Weekend Report - 15th/16th July 2017
Skinner and West in GB Teams
Zak Skinner and James West both competed for Great Britain last week. Both were unlucky not to make the finals as they did not progress beyond their respective championship heats.
Zak Skinner earned his first senior British vest at the World Para Athletics Championships, held in the Queen Elizabeth Stadium, London, the first major global event held at the venue since the 2012 Olympic Games. Skinner, who at 18 is still a junior athlete, was competing against more experienced seniors, having been selected due to his rapid improvement in both sprinting and long jumping, over the last year. He spent the past two weeks with the British squad in Paris and London preparing for the championships, a totally new and inspiring experience for him, training alongside world para and olympic gold medalists.
He competed in the T13 (visually impaired) 100m heats on Sunday morning in front of a partisan British crowd of 10,000 and recorded a lifetime best of 11.15 to take 4th place, missing out on qualifying for the final, by the smallest margin possible, 0.01s. After the race he said, “That was crazy, that London crowd, they were amazing. They cheered me on the whole way and not many people can say they had an experience like that.”
Skinner is now looking forward to competing in his main event, the Long Jump, on Saturday (22nd July), where he will be aiming to improve on his personal best of 6.54m.
James West travelled to Bydgoszcz, Poland for the European under 23 championships and was disappointed to miss out on a place in the 1500 metres final, by just 0.34 seconds. West finished 8th of 14 starters in his heat with 3.44.72.
The Tonbridge under 13 and 15 squad finished second in their final match of the UK Youth Development League, on Sunday at Bedford. The performance secured promotion back to the Premier Division, as they finished runners-up, of the six clubs, in the division.
There were nine A-string wins for Tonbridge athletes with under 15, Rebekah O’Brien, securing two of them, at 800m (2.20.5) and High Jump (1.60m). In the same age group Catherine Davies won the Pole Vault with 2.40m and there was also a victory in the 4x300 metres relay. O’Brien combined with Maisie Rixon, Maria Bragin and Eliz O’Donnell to win in 2.56.8. This took more than four seconds from the two-year old club record.
There was also a victory and club 4x300 metres relay record from the under 15 boys squad, who ran 2.40.6. James Mardon, Fraser Gordon, James Crawley and Guy White combined to shave a tenth of a second from the record set earlier in the season. The only individual under 15 boy A-string win came from Joshua O’Brien, in the High Jump, with 1.63m.
At under 13 level there were wins from Lily Stewart (High Jump 1.40m), Caitlin Ebbage (Shot Putt 9.21m) and Lucinda White (Javelin 33.15m).
Race videos are available by clicking here.
On Wednesday evening there were a good number of Tonbridge middle distance runners in action at Watford. Ryan Driscoll (3.46.74) was third in the British Milers Club 1500 metres, with Chris Olley (3.47.83) not far behind, running a seasons best. The fastest of the 800m runners in action was under 17, Simon Coppard, who ran a personal best of 1.54.69.On Sunday, Charlie Joslin-Allen finished second in both the Golden Mile and the five kilometre road race, at Eastbourne, recording times of 4.20 and 16.05, respectively, the latter starting forty five minutes after the mile.