Scorching & Sizzling Success.

I know I featured these photos in the last newsletter but as there are reports on both fixtures in this edition I thought they were worth repeating.

Above – Some of our Midlands League T&F team and below some of our Vets, although you wouldn’t know it to look at them!
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I’m away for a week now so I wanted to get this newsletter out early. With a couple of exciting and successful T&F fixtures to report on I didn’t want to leave them for another week and I’m pretty sure my wife wouldn’t look kindly to me getting the laptop out while we are away.

Both fixtures really were wonderful occasions although taking place in very different conditions. The first was in the scorching heat of last Sunday and the Vets was in much cooler conditions at the track last Wednesday. Needless to say they could not have taken place without our officials and volunteers, who helped make them both run smoothly.

There are also a few photos of Paul Hawkins taking part in the Queens Baton Relay for the Commonwealth Games on Friday, where quite a few members popped along to support him.

Have a good week.

Take care

David Jones
A couple of our relay teams.
Jess Sheppard, Maisie-Joy Spriggs, Niamh Hillard and Charlotte Gravelsons
Alex Adams, Caleb Spriggs, Taylor Stubbins and front – Ned Campbell

Midland Counties T&F League Division 3

Yate – Sunday 17th July

Report – David Jones

In searing heat our Midland League T&F team once again did the club proud in this vital fixture at Yate near Bristol.

There were multiple PBs and inspiring performances all round as Team Manager Mike Sheppard twisted arms and cracked the whip to encourage team members to compete in events they were unfamiliar with or in some cases had never competed in before.

With just 3 points separating the top 3 teams in the league and with just one fixture remaining it really was a case of every point counting.

It was also something of a family affair with members of the Campbells, Spriggs and Gravelsons families competing in some 30 events, half of the total events on the day. 

Many team members competed in multiple events, at time running straight for one to another with no time to draw breath.

Our busiest athlete of the day was Vicky Sharpe who competed in no fewer than 6 individual events. In the 400m she ran a PB of 81.12 to come 2nd, in the 2000m steeplechase she ran another PB with a time of 9:28.11 to secure 1st place. She achieved yet another PB of 8.14 in the triple jump, followed by PBs in the discus (15.78) and hammer (13.10), finally she threw the javelin 21.72 to come 2nd.

As is the norm in these type of events Paula Williams could be seen rushing from one event to the next as she competed in 5 individual events. She won the 100m hurdles in a season’s best time of  17.71, was 2nd in shot put with a throw of 10.44, it was another season’s best in the discus with a throw of 21.86. In the hammer she threw 17.19 and in the javelin 33.21.

Both Ned Campbell and Nick Butler competed in 4 individual events. Ned ran his 800m in 2:18.91, won the 400m B race in a PB time of 67.14, was 2nd in triple jump B competition with a jump of 10.10 and threw the shot 6.81. Sister Tilly also had a busy and productive day with 2nd place finishes in both 800m B race in a PB time of 2:56.59 and triple jump B (7.70m). Finally she threw a PB of 6.14m in shot put B. Not to be outdone by the kids, father Nick threw PBs of 14.21 in the discus and 12.30m in the hammer.

Nick Butler was victorious in the long jump B with a PB of 6.06m and also the triple jump A with a jump of 12.66m. He also ran a season’s best 11.77 in 100m and a PB of 24.10 in 200m

The Spriggs’ and Gravelsons’ were also hugely productive. Maisie-Joy Spriggs won the 100m B in a PB time of 13.85 and had another PB in 200m of 29.09. She aslo ran 5:09.69 in 1500m. Brother Caleb ran PBs in all 3 of his individual events –  400m (62.77), 400m hurdles (66.96), 2000m steeplechase (7:36.11). Father Chris Spriggs relished the chance to compete in the steeplechase with his son, running a PB time of 9:37.50. He also recorded a PB time of 5:45.75 in 1500m.

For the Gravelsons, Charlotte won the 100m hurdles A race in a season’s best 20.33, she grabbed 2nd place in the 400m hurdles A race with a time of 75.47. She also recorded a high jump SB of 1.25m to share 1st place. Brian Gravelsons, as well as timekeeping, found the time to gain valuable points in javelin (21.65m), shot put (5.38) and a PB of 14.42m in the hammer.

There were some excellent performances in 400m, 800m,1500m and 3000m races. Taylor Stubbins was overjoyed with his almost 3 second PB in 400m with a time of 54.85, he also ran a SB time of 2:01.52 to secure 2nd place in 800m A race. Clare Goodwin ran PB times of 76.28 and13:40.83 in 400m and 3000m respectively. Emily Field ran a SB time of 2:21.39 to grab 2nd place in 800m A race. Niamh Hillard was 2nd in 1500m B race with a time of 5:15.16. She also recorded a PB of 29.49 in 200m and jumped a PB of 4.38 in long jump. 

Alex Adams recorded a PB of 4:11.04 in 1500m and also won the high jump B competition with a jump of 1.45m. Alex Pester had a superb 3000m A race finishing in 2nd place 10:07.53. Alex P also had his arm twisted to throw the discus for the first time. The thing about doing something for the first time is that you are guaranteed a PB, this he achieved with a throw of 8.63m.

The talented and versatile Emma Bexson was 2nd in the 3000m A race (12:30.60), she ran 400m hurdles in a SB time of 96.63 and was victorious in 2000m steeplechase A race with a time of 9:12.01.

In the relays, our ladies 4x400m team of Jess Sheppard, Charlotte Gravelsons, Niamh Hillard and Maisie-Joy Spriggs stormed to victory in 4:26.74. The men’s team of Alex Adams, Ned Campbell, Taylor Stubbins and Caleb Spriggs ran magnificently to grab 2nd place in a time of 3:45.48. The ladies 4x100m team of Emily Madden-Forman, Paula Williams, Jess Sheppard and Charlotte Gravelsons (running in both relays) also finished 2nd with a time of 54.14. Finally, the men’s 4x100m team of Alex Pester, Nick Campbell, Chris Spriggs and David Jones were instructed by the team manager to just get the baton round, this they achieved, finishing 5th in 62.5 seconds.

The A competition of the high jump saw a couple of superlative performances from our athletes. Emily Madden-Forman comfortably won her competition by some 33cms, with a PB jump of 1.78m. George Fox Rowe was overjoyed to jump 2m for the first time, his only regret being that he didn’t do it in the English Schools competition a week earlier. George also won the long jump A competition by 49cms with a PB jump of 6.30m.

Jess Sheppard ran a SB time of 13.37 in 100m and was 2nd in the long jump A competition with an SB jump of 4.79m.

I was delighted to break my own M70 club record for 100m with a time of 17.15, my quickest time for 8 years. I was also pleased with a SB time of 35.55 in 200m.

Last and absolutely not least was Paul Hawkins’ season’s best throw of 8.71 in javelin.

Huge thanks are due to our officials on the day:  Emma Sparrow, Alison and Brian Gravelsons,  Sandy Green, Graham Thompson, Nick Campbell and Paul Hawkins.

Ben Kruze in full flight.
Midland Vets T&F League fixture.

Stratford Track – 21st July

Report – David Jones

In temperatures far cooler than their fellow club members had to endure on Sunday, our Vets T&F team hosted the latest Midlands T&F League fixture at the Stratford Track last Wednesday.

This is a huge event to organise with 8 teams competing. Massive thanks are due to the very many volunteers and officials who made it such a resounding success. The league secretary told me after the fixture “you have quite an impressive group of enthusiastic volunteers and a great facility in Stratford” and one of the lead officials from outside of the club commented on the club’s professionalism. Huge congratulations are also due to Hannah Osborne who, in her first season as Team Manager, ensured that things ran smoothly. She also picked the team and competed in multiple events on the night. Well done Hannah.

The evening started with the 100m races and the club showed the benefit of regular training sessions under the tutelage of Elaine Ledden, the club’s Athlete of the Year. These sprints generated over 25% of our points on the night despite the strong headwind. There were victories for Dave Wilson (13.2), Elaine Ledden (15.5) and Paula Williams (14.9). There were 2nd place finishes for David Jones (17.5) and Andy List (14.5) and 3rd place finishes for Kate Sergent (24.5) and Simon Curran (14.8), this despite Simon having to compete in a younger age group, Also picking up valuable points in the sprints were Max Ross (14.4), Emma Bexson (18.3) and Team Manager Hannah Osborne (18.1)

The 400m saw a club record for Dave Battersby, finishing in 3rd place in time of 58.9.  John Peacock, Hannah Osborne and Clare Goodwin also finished 3rd in their races with times of 78.1,  79.6  and 77.1 respectively. The M40 400m unfortunately saw Adam Linforth pull up with an injury within a couple of metres of the start. Emma Bexson completed our 400m runners with a time of 82.8.

Racewalking has become bit of a speciality for us as a club and it is often a source of many points. So it proved on Wednesday, earning us 30 out of a maximum 32 points. There were victories for Malcolm Bowyer (13:48.7) and Paul Hawkins (13.53) with 2nd place finishes for Gemma Smith (14.12) and Kate Sergent (14.10).

In the 1500m there was a club record and PB for Ben Kruze. His time of 4:10.4 was a massive 35 seconds ahead of the next placed finisher. This time puts him comfortably inside this year’s top 20 UK rankings for his age. Also enjoying a successful night in the 1500m were Matt Burdus-Cook who had a 2nd place finish in a time of 4:39.8 and Jim McMorran ran a club record time of 5:19.5.

There was a 2nd place finish in the 1500m for Christine Coote (8:10.2) in her first outing at this distance. There were also 3rd place finishes for Hannah Osborne (6:17.9) and Emma Bexson (5:44).

In the 800/400/200/200 medley relay our men’s team of Ben Kruze, Max Ross, Simon Curran swept to victory in a club record time of 4:02.9. Our ladies relay team of Clare Goodwin, Hannah Osborne, Elaine Ledden and Paula Williams finished in 2nd place with a time of 5:21.2.

In the men’s field events there were 2nd place finishes for Andy List in the high jump with a new club record clearance of 1.30m and Dave Wilson in triple jump (8.76m). Mark Illingworth was a last minute replacement in the shot, finishing in 4th place with a throw of 7.30m, also in 4th place in the long jump was Peter Sugden (3.76m).

In the ladies field events Paula Williams won the javelin with a throw of 28.46, some 4m 46cms ahead of the next placed thrower. Elaine Ledden finished in 2nd place in both the triple jump and  high jump. In the triple jump she jumped 7.42 and in the high jump she finished on the same height as the winner (1.10) but was placed 2nd after a count back. Liz Manzella should be pleased with her 4th place finish in the long jump, with a jump of 2.61m.

The provisional  results show that our ladies finished in 1st place on the night with 122 points against Worcester’s 117. Positions were reversed in the men’s competition with Worcester finishing on 137 points against our men’s tally of 115. 

The final league fixture of the season is on 10th August and our ladies have a real chance of finishing 1st over the whole season. They are currently just 1 league point behind Worcester – 22 v 23 and 16 match points behind – 378.5 v 362.5. Our men’s team is also placed 2nd overall but with 20 points against Worcester’s 24, they will not be able to catch Worcester.

The Queen’s Baton Relay

As mentioned last week, Paul Hawkins took part in The Queen’s Baton Relay on Friday where quite a few members, young and not so young, together with various parents, turned up to give him a cheer and some moral support
Team Hawkins
The full squad
More Photos from the two recent T&F League fixtures
Midland League T&F

Yate – 17th July
Emily Madden-Forman
The handover – Alex Adams to Ned Campbell
Nick Butler
Jess Sheppard
Alex Pester
George Fox Rowe on his way to a PB and his first 2m jump.
Paula Williams and Charlotte Gravelsons
Vicky Sharpe – The hardest working member of our team on the day.
Emma Bexson (left) and Charlotte Gravelsons (right)
Nick Campbell
Niamh Hillard passes the baton to Maisie-Joy Spriggs
Alex Adams
Emily Field
Above Ned and below Tilly Campbell
Chris Spriggs
Nick Campbell
Father and son Chris and Caleb Spriggs tackle the water jump in the steeplechase.
Maisie-Joy Spriggs being watched by yours truly, Chris & Toby Spriggs and Nick Butler.
Taylor Stubbins
Midland Vets T&F League

Stratford Track – 21st July
Matt Burdus-Cook
Jim McMorran
Elaine Ledden
Yours truly. According to Mr Bearman I need to be more upright, my shoulders need to be more relaxed, I should have high hips and I should be looking where I’m going and not down. Apart from that everything is okay apparently!
Dave Wilson
Max Ross
I’m not sure what the collective noun is for a group of racewalkers is but here we see Gemma Smith, Paul Hawkins and Malcolm Bowyer.
Andy List on his way to an M60 club high jump record.
Dave Battersby centre
Team Manager Hannah Osborne with that determined look on her face.