Weekend Report - 18th/19th March 2017

Gordon, Wood and Saker plus Kent Indoor Gold Medal Performances and More!

The Club had success at a number of championships across the weekend, with competitions in Norwich, London, Liverpool and Oxford.

English Schools

The English Schools Cross Country Championships took place at Norwich, on Saturday with twenty-one Tonbridge AC members representing the forty-eight strong Kent team. The standout performance amongst them came from Fraser Gordon, who attends Hugh Christie School. He finished sixth in the Junior Boys event, for school years eight and nine and was subsequently selected for the England Schools team, to compete in the home international. With every race having more than three hundred competitors, high positions were difficult to come by, although Alasdair Kinloch showed a return to better form with 9th in the senior boys event. TAC Results can be found here.

Kent Indoor Championships

The championships were held at Lee Valley Athletics Centre, in North London, over both days of the weekend. Tonbridge athletes amassed a total of fifteen gold medals, although the highlight came from a bronze medal winner. Emma Wood raced in the senior women’s 400 metres and finished third in 59.73. However, Wood is in the over 45 age group and her time set a British Indoor record for this category, breaking the previous best that had stood for twenty years.

There were three wins for Tonbridge on the track, in the senior men’s events. Anthony Bryan set an indoor personal best of 22.82 to win the 200 metres, Kieran Eland won the 800m in 1.58.46, also an indoor pb and Toby Ralph was a convincing 1500m winner in 4.05.30. Lewis Church, with a Shot Putt of 11.76m, was the only winner from the senior men’s field events and Simone Baxter won the only senior women’s gold medal for the club, as she clocked 9.90 for the 60 metres hurdles.

Becky O’Hara had her first competitive outing of the year and won the under 20 women’s 400 metres title, with a new championship best performance of 57.42. In the same age group Una Laqeretabua won the 60 metres hurdles in 9.70. Henry Marshall won the under 20 men’s 400 metres in 50.24. Toby Seal captured the under 20 gold medal over 60 metre hurdles in 8.34, whilst, also at u20 level, Zac Skinner produced a winning Long Jump of 6.33m, an indoor personal best.

Lizzie Miller was the only under 17 age group winner for the club, as she won the 1500 metres in 5.00.59. Rebekah O’Brien was a double gold medalist, at under 15 level, pacing the 800m well to finish strongly in 2.21.71, which was a championship best. The following day she won the High Jump with 1.61 metres. The final two gold medals for Tonbridge came from Sebastian Brooks in the T20 disability 60 metres and Long Jump. Click here for the results.

National Masters Cross Country Championships

On Saturday, the National Veterans Cross Country Championships, were staged at Liverpool and the Tonbridge squad picked up two gold medals. The first came from Graeme Saker, in the over 55 men’s event and the second was from the women’s over 35 team of Sasha Houghton, Lucy Pitcairn-Knowles and Nina Ridge. The results can be viewed here. Click here for the TAC Masters report.

Other News

Away from the championship arenas Ben Cole finished 19th in the high class Reading Half Marathon with 68.40 and in the USA Ryan Driscoll, racing for the University of San Francisco won his first outdoor race of the season, over 1500 metres in 3.48.73.

Oxford City Athletic Club again hosted the Barrie Strange Memorial Open Throws Competition at Horspath where Lucinda White acheived a javelin throw of 35.15m. All throws were over 30 metres, with her second best throw over 34m, despite a cross wind, breaking the U13G club record, and also the Kent county record, moving to number 15 on the All-time list. Impressive for her first throw of the season.

Tom Bosworth competed in the Lugano Trophy, the 14th Memorial Mario Albisetti race, held in Switzerland on Sunday. Tom gained a silver medal with a time of 81:53, just 34s behind the winner.

This coming weekend on Saturday 25th March, the Club will have men’s and women’s teams in the South of England Road Relay Championships, at Cyclopark, Gravesend and Phoebe Barker in the U20 women's team at the IAAF World Cross Country Championships in Uganda taking place on Sunday 26th March.