This week Bristol & West AC indicated their true strength for the first time this year with a magnificent ‘Team’ performance. We came 2nd to Birchfield and now have 6 points which still only leaves us in 4th place, so a lot to play for? So many people contribute to such a performance, the star performers, those who do many events, those who fill in where they are needed, the Officials who earn team points for their efforts and of course most of all the team management led by Chris Elson. So where do I start with a report where everyone contributed?
First of all let us honour those who rattled in the points by filling the gaps. Of these ‘try all’ people Team Manager Andrea Lock always takes the honours, this week she scored a pb in the Pole Vault, scored 3rd & 4th in two hurdles races, filled in at 200m and led off the 4x400m relay. Vanessa Brann always covers a range of events and this time it was 400m, 800m and both relays but to ‘try all’ and score pb’s in your main events must be very satisfying as Yannick Budd showed in both hurdles races coupled to a 2nd in the High Jump and fine runs in both relays.
In the sprints it was good to see Ben Coghlan out again after nagging injury and his 11.1 & 22.3 showed that he is in good form. Young find Leon Reid (U17) improved his pb in the 200m to 22.9 but then was disappointingly disqualified in the 100m guest race. Leon is learning lots of things fast and catching on to Athletics well. He did also get a valuable 2nd place in the Long Jump. On the female side we were very grateful to have Emma Heath continuing her return to Athletics with a fine 100m run.
Remarkably we scored outstanding points in the vertical jump events which is unusual for B&W. We won both strings in the Women’s High Jump with Hayley Pitman and Nicola Breaks and gained a pair of 2nd’s in the Men’s event with the very talented (nursing injury) Ding Yang along with Yannick.
Our real strength is in the throwing events with Christina Jones, Hayley Green and Nicola Breaks carrying all in the Women’s events and James Preston doing the same in the Men’s throws. A couple of other useful youngsters helped James though with Max Cresswell (U17) trying out the senior Javelin & Shot and Luke Bailey throwing the discus. Each scored valuable points.
Our distance competitors who really were our weak point in the first match made amends for everthing with outstanding runs in this match. Richard Peters matched all in the 800m & 1500m with confident wins and in each case newcomer Mike Willsmore followed up with ‘B’ string wins. In the Men’s 3km we had 2nd & 1st with Phil Wylie and Dan Woolford as we did in the Women’s event with Imogen Ainsworth and Vicky Tester. It was good to see Ruth Mitchell back in B&W colours again where she had brave runs in the 400m & 800m events.
Lucy Parker-Armitage was also a person that we welcomed back for the horizontal jumps. Lucy finished at Durham University last year and although not at her fittest she offered to compete and did well at the long & triple. Welcome back Lucy and please stay! Samantha Moore was one disappointed athlete who really always ought to be proud of her efforts for the Club. On this occasion she went with the intention of improving her 100mH time after some excellent trial runs in training. Sadly she lost rhythm mid-race and so was deflated with a slowish time. Nevertheless Sam grabbed valuable points in the Long Jump, 100m and sprint relay to justify her day. That’s team spirit.