TREBLE TRIUMPH AT INTER AREA CHALLENGE:
The club achieved the unprecedented feat of winning all three trophies at the indoor Inter Area Challenge, held atthe illustrious Lee Valley Athletics Centre. Here, Team managers Matt Long and Elaine Mee report on that memorable day of Sunday March 1- 2020.
200m TRACK TRIUMPHS
The team picked up a fabulous five podium places, with one first, one runner-up and three third places in the 200m. Dominic Bradley blasted to a new CBP in 22.96s, whilst there was a silver lining for Ellena Ruddock (W40) 27.26s. Jill Roginski (W60) and Fiona Palmer (W50) placed third with 33.54 and 30.32 respectively whilst mens’s skipper Lawrie Dunn (M70) used his experience for a top 3 finish in an eye catching 32.09s. Phil Clayton (M60) and David Wilson (M50) finished in 4th and 6th respectively and ran well to notch up invaluable team points
CHAMPIONSHIP BEST PERFORMANCE FOR TINA
Hats off to terrific Tina Wickens (W50) who stormed to a fantastic championship best performance of 65.06s in taking the spoils over 400m. Richard White (M60) looked a class act in record 59.18s to win his event. This deadly duo were backed up by brilliant Bruce Hendrie (M70) who bagged a sliver andevergreen Elaine Ledden (W60) who took bronze. Whilst outside of podium finishes, Gemma Knight (W35) 4th, Nathan Moore (M35) and Kevin Pye (M50) – both 5th – all notched up invaluable points for the collective cause
MIDDLE DISTANCE MARVELS
Midland Masters took the spoils in no less than 3 of the 8 races over the 4 lap 800m races. Thumping the opposition by a staggering 9 seconds was awesome Angela Copson (3:20.62). Having to battle harder for their respective victories were terrific Tina Wickens (W50 1st 2m30.63) who narrowly headed Lisa Thomas of VAC and David Jones (M70) who edged out EMAC Kenneth Bowman by just 7 tenths of a second in a barmstorming finish which had the team dancing in delight in the Lee Valley aisles. These victories inspired follow ups from Lucie Tait-Harris (W35), Graham Moffatt (M50) and David Oxland (M60), all of whom took brilliant bronze medal positions. Running a perfect tactical race was M35 Phil Gould, who inspiringly set aside considerable emotional pressures to run a blinder in tactical terms, moving from the rear of the field late on to take an unexpected but welcome 4th in bagging invaluable points for the collective cause.
MAJESTIC METRIC MILERS’
Continuing on from the massive successes had by our 800m squad, were the Metric Milers’ who attacked one of the track and field’s blue riband events with gusto. M60 David Bedwell (4:59.34) was magnificent in holding off Richard Holland (VAC) as was W35 Lucy Wallace (pictured) whose 4:55.86 saw her head a class field.
A brave and committed front run from M35 Kristian Watson (4:21.01) saw him finish up as runner up to Simon Coombes of EMAC and the inspirational Jane Pidgeon ran a superbly judged race to finish W50 runner up behind VAC’s Anna Critchlow.
Two men who barely had time to sit down all day due to their commitment to bagging points were M50 Conrad Watson who climbed off his sick bed for an unexpected and fine 4th in a new PB (5:00.77) andDavid Jones (M70) who also placed 4th but who would of course take gold over 800m
RECORD RACE WALK
Carolyn Derbyshire set a barnstorming New W35 Championship Best Performance (10:32.77-pictured left) over the 2k circuit at Lee Valley to destroy the opposition. Her M35 counterpart Paul Hawkins (12:30.47) took gold in his race as did wonderful Wendy Kane (11:45.68- pictured right) in comfortably beating Helen Middleton of EMAC.
M50 Conrad Watson (see separate report which follows shortly) took a fine 3rd with M70 showing Peter Boszko unlucky to be given a DQ but nevertheless showing his metal in attempting to compete with men more than a decade his junior in the M60 race
M50 Donald Brown strode to a new Championship Best Performance and British record of 8.94 in the 60m hurdles. His grace under pressure was enough to hold off Barrie Marsden (8.97) from SCVAC. Meanwhile women’s captain Paula Williams ran a fine 9.72 take runners up spot in the W35 race with SCVAC’s Diana Norman just edging it.
DYNAMIC DAVE COWLEY GIVES HIGH JUMPERS A LIFT OFF.
M70 David Cowley cleared 1m24 in taking gold to hold off the challenge of Geoff Kitchener (VAC) who trailed him by just 3cm. Captain marvel Paula Williams displayed her versatility with a fine 3rd in the W35 event, with an impressive 1m30 and a podium spot was also claimed by M70 Mick Edwards who bravely stepped up to the challenge of competing against considerably younger athletes in the M60 event. This proved to be an inspiration for M60 Quentin McQuillan who placed a creditable 4th in the M50 event. Debutant Jack Poxon was understandably pleased with a solid outing which saw him take 4th as an M35 and he will clearly be an asset to the squad in the years to come
PAYNTER’S THROWS A WORK OF ART
M35 Mathew Paynter took gold in the shot, 11m13cm, more than 2 metres ahead of his nearest rival, Gary Smith of EMAC. Women’s Captain Paula Williams continued to lead by example on the day, with a comfortable W35 win over Julie Machin from SCVAC. Susan Frisby (W50) and Jill Roginski (W60) pushed their rivals all the way in taking silvers with W70 Sally Hine also taking a fabulous runners up spot. M50 Donald Brown and M70 David Cowley took bronze. In competing with men a decade his junior, M60 Mick Edwards placed a fine 4th
RELAY RUNNERS SEAL THE DEAL
By late afternoon in Lee Valley on Sunday 1st March, just seven 4 x 200m relay races stood between Midland Masters AC and an unprecedented treble of titles, as both men’s and women’s teams held slender leads over a powerful EMAC outlet. M70’s, skippered by Lawrie Dunn took a fantastic win with David Cowley, Bruce Hendrie and David Jones all rising to the occasion to collectively clock 2m12.83s. Their considerable exploits were matched by the W35 quartet of Karen Gomes, Janelle Quinn, Paula Williams and Ellena Ruddock who romped home in 1m55.35. With the M50, W50 and M60 teams all finishing runners up and the M35 team taking bronze, the tension in the stands was palpable as the support team realised the squad stood on the precipice of a unique trio of wins. Sprint relays are that most unpredictable of events and one slip and a dropped baton in the very last event of the day would have meant a long and empty handed trip back up the M1 that evening. With hearts in their mouths and a roar from the wider squad, the W60 dream team of Sally Hine, Ellen Ledden, Jill Roginski and Angela Copson (pictured) did not bottle it and finished the job off in style with a marvellous win in 2m21.24s. As they wrapped themselves in the club’s flag and the whole squad joined in a merry jig, the voice over the tannoy proved to be music to the ears of the red and whites- a 27 point overall victory over EMAC, with the men winning by 19 points and the women by 18 points. It had been some day out in London!