Birchfield Harriers are hosting a Club Challenge at The Pingles Stadium in Nuneaton on Sunday 23rd August. The event is one of the recipients of the recent funding grant scheme from England Athletics to help enable independent competition organisers to stage events in Covid-secure environments.
Birchfield Harriers (BAL Men’s Champions 2019) take on Thames Valley Harriers (UK Women’s League Champions 2019) in the new combined team format that would have been introduced as the National Athletics League in 2020. Local opposition comes from Coventry Godiva. And the fourth team is a composite “Nuneaton Nomads” made up of some of the athletes who have used Nuneaton to train and compete during this difficult summer.
There are also guest races which have attracted some of the country’s top athletes who are preparing for the British Athletics Championships two weeks later in Manchester.
With the home of Birchfield Harriers being redeveloped for the 2022 Commonwealth Games, the events is being held at The Pingles Stadium in Nuneaton – a venue that has been instrumental in getting Track and Field competitions restarted under the new guidance as we return to competition out of the Covid-19 lockdown period.
Birchfield Harriers will have European 400mH Bronze medallist Meghan Beesley running in the shorter 100m Hurdles and the sprints.
World relay medallist Danny Talbot, coming back from injury, runs in the 200m whilst Efe Okoro, who has recently set PBs in both 400m flat and 400m hurdles, is hoping to run both events.
Multi-eventer Katie Stainton is due to compete in the hurdles, long jump, and javelin. After disappointment in the Gold Coast, she is working towards Birmingham 2022. She will face fellow heptathlete Niamh Emerson (Amber Valley) in at least 2 events on the day.
Several other Birchfield athletes with Commonwealth potential are also competing. In the hammer, Craig Murch and Jessica Mayo lead off the Birchfield challenge – Jessica takes on Pippa Wingate from TVH in the women’s event.
Coventry Godiva have Internationals Yasmin Liverpool in the 400m and Alex Farquharson in the men’s long jump.
There are 2 races for Para-athletes – 400m for wheelchair classes – including GB internationals Ben Rowlings and World Para Silver medallist Kare Adenegan.
The team event is a simple points-based competition – 1st (8pts) 2nd (6pts) 3rd (4pts) and 4th (2pts) – the only gimmick being each team having 2 Joker cards to double the points in an event for one man/one woman in their teams.
TVH – also have the 2019 leading GB Javelin thrower Gavin Johnson-Assoon, Chris McAlister in a very competitive 400mH, Jess Tappin in the 200m, and Laurensa Britane in the javelin.
Angela Barrett is also recently added to the Triple Jump.
Other guests include double Olympian Nathan Douglas in triple jump, leading Discus thrower Nick Percy (Shaftsbury Barnet) and International Sprinter Harry Aikines-Aryeetey.
The event will be streamed live on Vinco Sport – click here for the link to the live stream.
Support comes from England Athletics, JPhealth, and APsportsconsulting.