04.Jun.12 England Athletics Closed Senior and Aviva Parallel Success Championships (2)
With a complete season's change in the weather following the scorching heat of Bedford for the Combined Events Championships last weekend, the cold, wet and windy weather did not dampen the enthusiasm of the spectators and of the athletes taking part. Results here.
Undoubtedly the highlight of the weekend in those conditions was Saturday's Championship Best Performance in the hammer for Sarah Holt; a qualifying standard for the European Championships and just half a metre short of the Olympic B standard. Also with a new CBP was Kate Avery (Shildon Running & AC) who shaved almost a second off the 1500m record.
For the men's event, Steve Mitchell won the prestigious AAA trophy for the 1500m from Jenny Harris, EA Coach Mentor for Youth Endurance – and would add his name to those such as Coe, Cram and Ovett on that.
The women's 800m saw an exciting finish with Jenny Walsh (Spenborough & District AC) diving through the line to take the title from Guildford's Adelle Tracey.
Another 1500m record was broken first thing - the Tom Pink Relays enabled teams of local young athletes to run 100m legs and try to beat Steve Cram's record (for the boys) and Dame Kelly Holmes UK record - which the girls did by a massive 9 seconds! Click here for full results.
The wind played havoc with the short sprints - ranging from -3.2 to +2.4. A noteworthy performance in these conditions was T35 Sophia Warner (Worthing Harriers) who won on points in the 200m Ambulant race, in a headwind of 3.2m/s against others who had competed in a following wind. She also took 100m gold.
Matt Hudson (City of Sheffield AC) cleared his 110m hurdles into the wind in 13.9, a season's best for him against a strong line up for the title with Edi Okoro, and Nick Gayle among others. James Forman (Southampton AC) delivered on his fast semi-final promise on Saturday by winning the 400m hurdles the following day, dropping just a couple of tenths on his semi time in torrid coniditions. Kent's Lawrence Wooldridge won the 400m in a big PB of 47.45 from Notts AC's Michael Warner.
On the field on Saturday, Nadia Williams took a sensational England Championship hat trick in the triple jump which was made even better by the fact that her 13.71m was just 6cm off her lifetime best.
Day two's field events saw the third round of the women's shot put produce most of the deciding distances, with Rachel Wallader winning with a best put of 15.30m. The men's discus was won by Beagle Abdul Buhari (53.09m) with the two other medallists both breaking the 51m mark, and in the hammer James Bedford took gold with a convincing 3m margin over Peter Smith - throwing out to 70.13m. The women's javelin saw a huge field with Izzy Jeffs (North Devon AC) taking and keeping her 11cm from the 3rd round lead over Sale's Rosie Semenytsh.
It was also a close result in the men's triple jump with the top three all leaping over 15m; Newham's Michael Puplampu taking gold with 15.41m. Birchfield Harriers' Amy Woodman was just shy of her 2011 long jump CBP but regained her title nevertheless, the only athlete to pass the 6m mark. There was also a PB for Fiona Clarke who won the ambulant long jump at her home track on points. Isobel Pooley cleared a further 8cm than her nearest high jump rival to win with 1.82m.
Under 17 Mitchell Dutton (St Albans AC) won his first national gold with a throw of 30.45m in the Ambulant Javelin. Coach Malcolm Wallace told us: "Mitchell's gold medal was achieved through his hard work and determination. I am so pleased that his dedication to training has brought him his first national title."
The youngsters continued to inspire: in the men's long jump came a breakthrough performance, as 17-year-old Oliver Newport smashed his lifetime best by over half a metre to win the long jump with 7.70m.
Also only 17, Sophie Papps (WSEH) beat a strong field in the 200m, one of only two athletes who ran under 24 seconds in both heat and final. She tweeted that upon receiving her AAAs trophy it was great to be associated with the likes of Katharine Merry and other great names already engraved on the silverware.
F40 (dwarf) athlete Sean Clare continued his run of success with victories in the shot and discus. His coach Shelly Holroyd told us, "I’m delighted with Sean’s performance. He is still on a high from breaking the British Record last week and throwing 85cm past the ‘A’ standard for London. He’s worked really hard over the winter, we’ve changed his discus technique and now we’re seeing the benefits. Although the weather wasn’t good for throwing this weekend he still managed to get a decent distance out. There’s more to come too so watch this space."
Also in the throws, this time the seated, a battle raged for world class throwers F57 Derek Derenalagi (competing for the Army) and F33 Kieran Tscherniawsky; Derek throwing further but Kieran eventually winning on points. Graham Condie improved his personal best by exactly 1.50m but finished behind Gateshead club mate Stephen Miller in the F32 Club Throw.
Both T46 (amputee) Ola Abidogun and Loughborough-based T12 (visual impairment) Libby Clegg based also ran in the sprints.
Promising youngsters Isaac Towers and Ben Rowlings dominated the wheelchair 100m, 200m, 400m and 800m, taking gold in each between them. You can listen to their podcast with us below this report - along with podcasts from other athletes incuding hammer thrower Sarah Holt, Sam Ruddock and Jenny Walsh. Use the small red arrows to scroll through.
EATV video coverage of all the events are available to view exclusively on EATV.
Thanks to the coaches and spectators and especially the officials who braved the inclement weather throughout the championships! One of the parallel Success athletes commented, "The officials were lovely, and in spite of the weather as well. This is what adds to the competition." Despite that weather, many PS athletes returned for the second day of competition - a great signal that the athletes value the championship and having closely run events.
Photos by Mark Shearman
(apart from Mitchell (Malcolm Wallace) and Sarah (Gwen Harris))
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