Manchester set for Senior Champs

This weekend sees Manchester welcome those competing in the England Athletics AAA Senior and Disability championships. Incorporated into this event is the CAU Inter-Counties championships.

As well as England Athletics medals up for grabs, a number of the prestigious and historic AAA trophies will be awarded. Plus each winner will get automatic section onto the England team for the upcoming Manchester International.

It’s a packed timetable with plenty to watch throughout the two days at the Manchester Regional Arena. And if you can’t make it there, you can follow everything live on our twitter, facebook and Instagram, or watch the live streaming and on demand from Vinco. Scroll down for useful links.

Ones to watch

The first event on Saturday is the women’s 400m hurdles and what a start to the championship! After all the heats, the final may well see defending champion Hayley McLean (Chelmsford AC, Chris Zah) up against Commonwealth Games athletes Jessica Turner (Amber Valley & Erewash AC, Nick Dakin)and Jessica Tappin (Thames Valley Harriers). Plus second ranked Jessie Knight (Windsor Slough Eton & Hounslow AC, Marina Armstrong) and a number of other top ten ranked athletes are also entered. The men’s event is set to be just as dramatic, again with the defending champion Jacob Paul (Windsor Slough Eton & Hounslow AC, Marina Armstrong)entered, plus Chris McAlister (Thames Valley Harriers, Marina Armstrong), who has run sub-50 seconds three times this month, and Seamus Derbyshire (City of Stoke AC, Nick Dakin)fresh from a silver at the European Athletics U20 Championships.

In the one lap flat, defending champion Sadam Koumi (Birchfield Harriers, Tony Hadley)is likely to meet England U23 champion Lee Thompson (City of Sheffield & Dearne AC, John Henson)in the final, but there’s a great selection of other athletes hoping to get a position on the podium. The women’s 800m has a very evenly matched field entered, so it’s likely to be a very close finish – and with no pacemaker, brains and tactics as well as legs are going to count.

The male pole vaulters will be out first thing too with Harry Coppell (Wigan & District H & AC) and Joel Leon Benitez (Notts AC, Bob Phillips)separated in their best clearance by just 2 cm. With the majority of entrants having cleared 5 metres - including Britain’s number 1 decathlete Tim Duckworth (Liverpool Harriers & AC, Toby Stevenson)- the latter stages of the competition will be close.

In the Club throw we have both World Para silver medallist Stephen Miller (Gateshead Harriers & AC, Ros Miller) and World Para bronze medallist Gemma Prescott (British Wheelchair Athletics Association, Mike Wood) entered. Another is five time world record holder Stef Reid (Charnwood A C, Aston Moore), entered into the ambulant long jump. Also look out for BUCS champion Tommy Horton (City of Sheffield & Dearne AC, Bashir Hussain)in the steeplechase who pulled on an England vest at the Loughborough International recently, Commonwealth athletes Molly Caudery (Thames Valley Harriers, Stuart Caudery)in the pole vault and Sophie McKinna (Great Yarmouth & District AC, Mike Winch)in the shot put, plus England U23 Naomi Ogbeta (Trafford AC, Tom Cullen)in the women’s triple jump – freshly returned from the European champs in Sweden.

The men’s triple jump should be a really exciting competition with four or five athletes hoping to leap beyond 16m if conditions are right. This includes Jonathan Ilori (Blackheath & Bromley Harriers AC)hoping to retain his title, number one ranked and 2018 British champion Nathan Douglas (Oxford City AC, Aston Moore), 2015’s England champion Nathan Fox (Shaftesbury Barnet Harriers)and British indoor champion and last year’s English bronze medallist Michael Puplampu (Newham & Essex Beagles AC, Tosin Oke)entered in a quality field of 20 men. Continuing the action in the sandpit, the men’s long jump looks to also be a quality event. Reynold Banigo (Sale Harriers Manchester)will be hoping to retain his title, while Jacob Fincham-Dukes (Leeds City AC, Matt Barton), Efe Uwefo (Harrow AC, John Herbert)and former champion Dan Bramble (Shaftesbury Barnet, Jonas Dodoo)will be aiming far to beat him to top spot.

Kimbely Baptiste (Crawley AC) is entered - hoping to do the sprint double again. With PBs throughout the field very close, and many combined eventers entered (including Ella Barrett (Chesterfield & District AC, John Henson), Holly Mills (Andover AC, Laura Turner-Alleyne)and Jessica Taylor-Jemmett (Sale Harriers Manchester, Joe Frist)), 200m the heats and final should all be exciting to watch. Edmond Amaning (Thames Valley Harriers) will concentrate on defending his 200m title this year, but he will have to contend with BUCS bronze medallist Jordan Broome (Sale Harriers Manchester, Ronnie Williams), Welsh champion Elliot Powell (Birchfield Harriers, James Hillier), and James Williams (Liverpool Harriers & AC, Paul Waters)and Sam Miller (Preston Harriers, Leon Baptiste)who both have a sub-21 second PB.

There is a quality field in the ambulant sprints too; Kadeena Cox (Sale Harriers Manchester, Matt Cullen)who medalled at both 100m and 200m at last year’s World Para Champs, she’ll be up against Eve Walsh-Dan (North Down AC, Kevin Dann)who won bronze and silver respectively at 100m and 200m last month at the World Para Athletics Grand Prix in Italy. Defending men’s 100m champion Zak Skinner (Loughborough Students AC, Aston Moore) and Ola Abidogun (Horwich RMI Harriers)who represented England at the Delhi Commonwealth Games and holds a number of medals from major Paralympic championships.

Some likely head-to-heads include defending 110m Hurdles champion Jake Porter (Birchfield Harriers, Andy Paul) up against last year’s silver medallist Miguel Perera (Harrow AC, Jerzy Maciukiewicz)who ran a new PB in Bedford in May. And with the defending champion not competing in the women’s event, the way is open for a new winner -a number of entrants are in the mid 13 seconds range and that includes England U23 champion Alicia Barrett (Chesterfield & District AC, Toni Minichello), Northern Ireland & Ulster champion Mollie Courtney (Cheltenham & County Harriers, James Hillier)and last year’s bronze medallist Megan Marrs (Windsor Slough Eton & Hounslow AC, Alex Nwenwu).

The men’s hammer will also see a three-way head-to-head; defending champion Craig Murch (Birchfield Harriers, Lorraine Shaw)will be trying to better the throws of the likes of nationally ranked number 2 Taylor Campbell (Windsor Slough Eton & Hounslow AC, John Pearson)and Chris Shorthouse (Birchfield Harriers, John Pearson)who has bettered 70m in the past. The men’s shot put pitches Scott Lincoln (City of York AC, Paul Wilson) – looking to earn his 4th England Senior title - against rival Youcef Zatat (Woodford Green AC with Essex Ladies, Scott Rider). And in the men’s discus we have four athletes entered who have thrown over 60m; 2018 champion George Armstrong (Newham & Essex Beagles AC, Zane Duquemin), Greg Thompson (Shaftesbury Barnet Harriers) who has bettered his best 2018 mark by over 4m this year to 65.56m, Loughborough International winner Nick Percy (Shaftesbury Barnet Harriers, Vesteinn Hafsteinnson)and 2015 champion Zane Duquemin (Shaftesbury Barnet Harriers, John Hillier). The women’s hammer has seven entrants who have thrown over 60m, with Jessica Mayho (Birchfield) looking a strong contender, having thrown two new 64m+ PBs last week in Portugal and Spain, and Pippa Wingate (Kingston & Poly) also throwing a PB just a fortnight ago in Kingston-upon-Thames.

And saving one of the best events for last, the women’s javelin is set to be very close with top 4 all entered and throwing over 54m. Emma Hamplett (Birchfield Harriers) will be there to defend her title, but on paper Freya Jones (Southampton AC, Dave Callaway)could beat her, and in the mix too are Welsh champion Bethan Rees (Cannock & Stafford AC, Mark Pinner), England U23 and BUCS champion Bekah Walton (Blackheath & Bromley Harriers AC) and 2017 champion Laura Whittingham (Sale Harriers Manchester, Tom Dobbing).

The England Athletics Senior 5000m championships take place this weekend at Milton Keynes. Jessica Judd (Blackburn Harriers & AC, Mike Judd ) is fastest on paper but Claire Duck (Leeds City, Mike Baxter) should be with her all the way. The men’s competition includes Adam Hickey (Southend, Eamonn Martin) and Jack Gray (Cambridge & Coleridge, Mark Vile) who battled it out for titles at the England 10000m Champs last month.

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