The annual County Track and Field Championships took place at Wolverhampton on Saturday 13th May. A large contingent of City of Stoke athletes travelled to contest the medals in this first championship of the season. The weather was less than kind, gloomy, damp and cold contrasting with the warm weather of the early part of the week. Such is life I’m afraid for athletes just when you want the weather to be kind it throws a wobbly. For most athletes this is standard fare “control the controllables” is the order for the day and carry on regardless.
A total of 35 medals consisting of 14 golds, 17 silver and 4 bronze was the haul at the close of the championships with 14 individual personal bests in the bag. Best performances go to Anthony Douglas with a 100m/200m double in the U15 boys events, Bret Okeke 100m/200m double in the U20 mens events and 3 medals, 2 silver and 1 bronze, in the U17 women shot(8.01 PB), hammer and discus respectively for Rhianne Moore-Martin. A decent haul of medals and personal bests for early season.
Well done to al who represented the club at the championships.
Full results can be found here. Staffs AAA Championships Results 2017
Report from BMC Grand Prix at Solihull Saturday 13 May
In addition to the county championships the BMC held its first Grand Prix event of the season. Why is it necessary I hear you ask for the BMC to clash the first of their fixtures with the county championships. Surely we as a sport should be promoting and encouraging athletes to take part in their county championships, feel free to voice your opinion on social media accounts because the powers that be think that holding a BMC fixture on the same day doesn’t impact attendance at the county championships for middle and long distance athletes. Really! dream on.
There was a huge attendance at this first BMC fixture, conditions at the start of the meeting were quite windy but as the evening progressed the wind eased to provide good competition conditions. Alex Brecker and Kate Holt, our two young senior cross country internationals, were to contest the men’s 1500m and women’s 5000m respectively.
First up was Alex in the 1500m C race, a high class field as usual. Alex ran a tactically sound race throughout with good positioning from the start. At the bell in 2:49 Alex took the lead and maintained it until 100m to go. Down the home straight the race was on and Alex was narrowly beaten into 3rd place clocking 3:49 as he crossed the line. Tactically there was nothing more that Alex could have done he ran pretty much the perfect race, more focus on speed endurance for the event should put Alex in line for improvement later in the season.
Last race of the evening the women’s 5000m metres, 16 athletes lined up for this race with Kate taking up this event seriously for the first time. A previous end of season race back in 2014 as a toe in the water had resulted in a 17:12 clocking. The pre race plan was to run even paced laps 78-79secs which if maintained would result in a sub 16:25 time which would qualify Kate for the World Trials at the beginning of July. The pace maker was to set 74secs per lap and we expected Kate would be at the back of the field but must stick to the plan, ignore what was happening in front and run her own race. Kate executed perfectly and quietly and calmly progressed through the field as those who had gone with the early pace gradually came back to her and were passed. Finishing in a creditable 5th place and crossing the line in 16:20.26 a huge personal best it was job well done. Cue chicken nuggets on the way home.
Well done to both athletes who are showing that they have serious potential on the track as well as over the country.