This is it – the week that possibly sees this great Club return to National League Competition. We have won the Midland (joint Men & Women’s) League for the past two years and feel confident to make the big upward move.
In 1979 our Women reached the highest club pinnacle by winning Div 1 of the UK Women’s League. Yes we beat Birchfield, Sale, Glasgow etc and walked away with the glory. About the same time (1978) our Men reached their high point by competing in Div 2 of the British (Men’s) Athletic League. We have been there before and know what it is like. If we want to be recognised nationally we have to be in there fighting. Good luck to both our Men’s & Women’s Teams on Saturday at Abingdon (Oxfordshire), bring back the goods chaps.
One interesting athlete to highlight for Saturday is Caroline Powell. Our Women’s World Veteran Champion was in that great team of 1979 amongst some famous international stars from Bristol. On Saturday she again represents us at 400m.
A truly remarkable achievement for this great athlete.
Competing in the Men’s match are :- Alba AC, Ashford, Bedford & County, Brighton & Hove, Medway & Maidstone AC, Nene Valley Harriers & Reading AC. We may have the pleasure of competing against one of the mainstays of our sprints and hurdles team from the past as Dave Brown now competes for Nene Valley.
In the Women’s match we are against Basildon AC, Crawley AC, Notts AC & Liverpool Harriers. Both matches should be exciting and close. Come on Bristol & West.
The two leading teams in both matches will automatically be invited to compete in the respective leagues in 2011. We need to be there, good luck to all. After all Bristol & West need to justify two brand new tracks for next season!
Sadly I have not had time to report for the past few weeks particularly due to my commitment to the organisation of the Bristol Half Marathon and the Bristol Mile races. Consequently some outstanding performances have gone un-reported.
Emily Diamond returned from the World Junior Championships with an impressive 6th place in the final. Her new pb of 23.47 legal was set in the semi-final. All this from the little girl that we first saw in Sports-hall Competition all those years ago. Well done Emily
Close on Emily’s heels we of course have the remarkable under-17 athlete Lucy Bryan. Lucy’s record is unblemished this year with wins in all of her competitions and Lucy did all of the Championships events open to her so there was no hiding. With an outstanding PB of 3.90m to win the South West Inter-Counties Championship, Lucy won the England Athletics Under 17 Championships at Bedford in a Championship best performance and then went on to Gateshead to win the UK School Games in attrocius wind conditions. Truly remarkable. To impress her tender age Lucy is still too young to compete for our Senior Women’s team at Abingdon this weekend!!
Even Lucy has someone closely on her heels – another remarkable athlete Bella Hatch. Bella began Pole Vaulting after converting from gymnastics over the winter period. I first saw her at the National Indoor Arena (NIA) in February 2010 and she was looked promising then with an outstanding vault of 2.50. Since then Bella has gradually progressed to the dizzy heights of 3.10 at the Young Athletes League but momentously on the way she came 2nd at Bedford in the England Athletics Under-15 Championships. A National Silver Medallist, wow. We look to great things in the future from Bella. Well done to Neil Winter and the whole Pole Vault Squad for bringing the Club such glory.
The other great YA Squad in the Club is Coached by Dave Taylor. Just mention his athletes led by Olivia and Miranda Sadler & Lily Owsley in the South West and everyone talks of their great feats. Olivia competed at the UK School Games (UKSG) and came a gallant 2nd in the 1500m with her second best time of the year 4:33.88. Remember the wind was very strong at Gateshead (and everywhere else) that weekend. Lily was also at the UKSG but unfortunately she was in the Hockey squad!
Miranda travelled to Exeter last Tuesday and almost topped her older sister with a great 1500m 4th place of 4:47.4. This was an improvement of 3.4 secs to her PB.
Gustav Klingstedt returned to the UK from Finland and competed in the 10 in 100 Cup competition clocking a PB in a B&W vest with 48.55 in the final. Gus’s main event these days is 400m Hurdles, he is a Finland International athlete for those who don’t know him so we look to him for great things in this week’s qualifier.
Also in the Cup Christina Jones nibbled away at her PB Hammer Throw with a new mark of 50.30m; Nicola Breaks won the Triple Jump and was 2nd in the Javelin. Carol Powell continued that great vein of form that she finally achieved at the Veteran Championships with a 62.97 2nd place clocking in the 400m. On the track match that great Club stalwart Imogen Ainsworth won both the 800m and 3km with ease. On the Men’s side we were treated to an excellent 3km PB win from Steve Mitchell in 8:16.6 and we won the Medley Relay but our sound 4th place (out of 8) was down to great team work from all those who competed.
Tom Kingsnorth really attempted a difficult task by completing a 100 mile race back in mid Summer over Multi-Terrain. Wow the thought of running that far hurts, well done Tom.
We had a reasonable Club turn out in our mile races last weekend on College Green with Naomi Speake excelling by winning her U17 event by 30 seconds and then she went on to compete in the Senior event finishing just 15 secs slower than in the U17’s. It was good to see Hannah Alderson in a B&W vest (this is a road race so she was 1st claim to B&W) and she turned in a great run to finish in 2nd place Laura Parker from Wells. Remarkably Miranda Sadler almost emulated Naomi’s time in the U15 race (just 2 secs slower and 1 age group lower) and was about 25 sec clear of the field. On the male side Zac Tobius chased the NSAC lad home in 4:49 in the U17 race and Ben Stephenson, Lewis Nightingale and Anton Mills picked up sound third places.