Track & Field Bulletin – 15th February 2011

16 Feb

USA results dominate this bulletin after our Under 23 athlete Richard PETERS broke the illusive 4 minute Mile barrier this weekend.  Furthermore Richard did it indoors and this must be an outstanding Club Record for him when you consider the great talent that we possess from the past at middle distance events.  Even the great Nick Rose did not go sub-4 indoors? (4:00.2)   I will step aside here and take in the following words from Mike Down that were included in this week’s ‘Endurance’ bulletin:-

Few British middle distance runners, let alone Bristol and West members, can have made such a remarkable start to their indoor careers as Rich Peters has done in the US over the past week.

He kicked off last weekend, by smashing his previous best 3,000m best outdoors by more than 20 seconds when scoring a decisive victory for Boston in an inter-University meet at Harvard in 8:10.53, and then followed up by cracking the four minute barrier for the first time in an even more spectacular debut over his specialist distance the Mile at his University’s annual BV Valentine Invitational meeting on 12 February.

Admittedly he did not win this time, having to be satisfied with third place in a tight finish, but his time of 3:58.26 was the equivalent of some five seconds faster than he has run over 1,500m outdoors. What’s more it was a new Boston University record and qualifies him for next month’s NCAA championships, which is a considerable achievement in his freshman year. The time may well be the fastest by a British runner this year and is less than a second slower than Nick Rose’s outdoor club record of 3:57.49.  (MD ends)

Chasing Richard we have Dave BISHOP also at University in the States.  David produced a top class Mile time of 4:03.83 last week and then followed up with 8:06.63 3k in Seattle this weekend.  That is 4 secs faster than Richard’s time the previous week so that shows just how close these two are.   Other USA indoor results included another improved Club Mile record for Steph BARNES now down to 4:50.98 but the real joy was to see that Emma REED has returned to competition after injury to run 10:15.33 for 3,000m in Albuquerque (MN).

Steve MITCHELL was I believe our only representative at the UK Trials at Sheffield.  With a 3:49.02 under his belt from the previous week hopes must have been high for a good placing in the final.  Unfortunately for Steve his still very fast 3:50.24 for 6th place in his heat was not quite good enough to make the final. After shadowing Nick McCormick, the eventual UK Champion, for most of the race, Steve kicked on with 400 metres to go and paid the price in the last 200 metres. Steve will have learnt from this experience and will hopefully run faster in the Inter-City Challenge in Cardiff in a week’s time.

At Birmingham for the Midland Champs pride of place must go to Scott BAJERE who won the U20 Championship race with a magnificent 6.93 clocking in the final (7.03 ht).  At last the breakthrough to go sub 7.00 secs has happened for Scott.  There is no looking back from here and we look forward to a magnificent summer season from you Scott.

Coach Joy Bray had great hopes for Hayley PITMAN this weekend and she was not let down.  Hayley matched the winning height with a great indoor pb of 1.70m to take 2nd place in the Senior High Jump.  Hayley has jumped 1.73 outdoors so as with Scott we look forward to a fine summer from Hayley.  Incidentally that jump of 1.70 would have placed her 7th in the UK Trials so we can measure her UK standing from that.  Joy also had a big breakthrough with another of her ‘Packers’ High Jump group with Mark Brown from Coventry clearing 2.00m for the first time.

Emma HEATH looked good in the blanket finish for the Women’s 60m with a Midlands bronze medal in 7.95s.  These Championships also doubled as the South West Champs and Emma carried off the Gold Medal for our region.  It was a pleasure for me to see you in fine form again Emma.

Andrew DEAN-YOUNG has put in tremendous effort to step up from 400m to 800m over the past couple of seasons and this all paid off with a fine indoor pb of 1:56.74 to take the bronze medal. Well done as well to Andrew’s Coach Cy Knibb.

Alex FIELDS has stayed with 400m and now trains at Bath Univ.  After a disqualification last week Alex looked for better things at these Midland Championships.  Sure enough after just failing to make the ‘A’ final in 51.15 Alex came back to take the ‘B’ Final in an indoor pb of 50.77 sacs.  Alex was so happy with this time that is only 0.01 off his outdoor pb.  

Theo CAMPBELL concentrated on his main event (Triple Jump) and came away with a season’s best of 14.49m to take 4th place in a very high standard event.  Theo looked very commanding on the runway and we hope he can have an injury free 2011 to make up for 2010.

Kwame FORDWOR improved his 200m time to 23.38 in the U20 age group which is extremely pleasing when you think that he still has 2 full years to establish himself before moving to the next grouping.

Dean Garrett our ‘return to the Bristol fold’ Coach had good success with his Under 11 ‘Fun in Athletics’ (Jnr Sportshall) teams who won their South West (North) Championship event at the weekend.  The star performer Ben Jefferies has just joined B&W and achieved a noteable Standing Long Jump of 2.27m.  Ben is remembered for his past success in the Street Sprints races that we promote as part of the Run Bristol celebrations in September.

Congratulations also to Team Managers Dave Turner, Hilary Nash & Sue Jones who steered all four age groups to the Finals at Birmingham of the UKA Sportshall Championships.  It is an outstanding achievement for all four groups to win their South West Qualifier at Torbay as they did last weekend.

One big result missed from last week’s bulletin was another Club Indoor pb for Nicola Breaks at the McCain City Challenge at Sheffield.  Nicola (the only B&W athlete selected for the London South Sharks team) improved to 11.63m to take 7th place in a really top class field.

Mike Strange