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Athletes shine on the final day of the Essex Championships
South Essex athletes wrapped up the Essex Championships at Chelmsford’s Melbourne Park on Saturday with another haul of medals. RYAN GOAD looks back at the best of the action.
THE under-17 men’s hammer was arguably the highest quality field event of the championships.
Southend AC’s Billy Praim-Singh recorded the seventh-best throw in the country this year with a personal best (PB) of 56.22m and Castle View School’s Levi Causton – ranked eighth in the UK – threw 54.57m.
But those throws were only good enough for silver and bronze respectively, as Chelmsford’s Alex Reynolds threw a massive 58.96m to win it – the fourth best throw in the country this year.
It seems that Essex is particularly strong in the power throws at the moment, with Castle View School’s Victor Adebiyi (under-15) another high up on the national rankings.
His shot putt of 13.31m was enough for the gold medal and the third best effort in the country this year, with Southend High School for Boys’ Michael Buckley finishing second in 11.93m.
Adebiyi also got a bronze in the discus (34.56m) – with Southend High’s Spencer Owen getting silver (34.62m) – and a bronze in the hammer (27.88m).
That hammer competition was won by Alex Skingle (Southend High) with a throw of 45.03m, which was the sixth best throw in the country this year.
Josh Porter made it two hammer wins for Southend High, picking up gold in the under-13 boys event (24.97m) ahead of team-mate Freddie Clark (23.18m) and Cecil Jones’ George Istok (20.26m).
Palmer’s College’s Thomas Head, meanwhile, won the under-20 men’s hammer with 63.08m.
Joshua Colvill (Southend High) won the under-13 boys shot with a putt of 8.94m with Cecil Jones College’s Thomas Milton the bronze medallist (7.33m).
Katherine Ellis (Basildon AC) picked up a silver in the under-20 women’s shot (8.06m) and a bronze in the discus (18.25m).
Lois Wightman (Southend High School for Girls) won silver in the under-17 women’s shot (9.33m), Thurrock Harriers’ Madeleine Cannell was the bronze medallist in the under-17 women’s discus (24.52m) and Southend AC’s Lachlan Doyle won a bronze medal in the under-13 boys discus (16.21m).
FitzWimarc School’s Kris Brown threw 45.40m to win a silver medal in the under-17 men’s javelin, the same colour medal as Tilbury’s Sam Harrison (second in the senior men’s javelin 44.07m) and Basildon AC’s Chloe Eayrs (second in the under-15 girls javelin 25.11m).
Finally, Southend AC’s Eleanor Butt wrapped up a fantastic personal championships by picking up her third gold medal when she won the under-13 girls javelin in a championship record of 28.05m, adding to medals won on the first day in the discus and shot. Thurrock Harriers’ Megan Smith was second in the javelin (17.87m) and FitzWimarc School’s Emilia Krise third with 14.16m.
Jade Packer winning the under-17 women's 200m
SPRINTS AND HURDLES
SOUTHEND HIGH School for Girls’ pupils did a 200m double with Jade Packer and Uchenna Okafor both winning gold medals.
Packer, representing Southend AC, stamped her authority on the under-17 women’s race from the outset, winning in 25.86s with her team-mate Shereen Raouf finishing in third place in 26.96s.
Okafor, meanwhile, took the honours in the under-13 girls race, clocking 28.31s,
Southend AC’s Jake King won a silver medal in the senior men’s 200m (22.19s) ahead of Chelmsford’s Markus Hunt (22.53s), while Nicole McKechnie was the bronze medallist in the under-20 women’s 200m (25.93s).
Thurrock Harriers’ Chay Clark won the under-20 women’s 400m hurdles (66.79s) ahead of Basildon’s Georgia Sleep (81.40s), with Clark’s Thurrock team-mate Michael Shortall relying on a perfectly timed dip to win the senior men’s 400m hurdles (59.03s).
Southend High School for Girls’ Michelle Hughes won the under-17 women’s 300m hurdles (45.48s) while Jack Avery (Basildon AC) won a silver medal in the under-20 men’s 400m hurdles (61.97s)
Mason Webb (780) won the under-15 boys 3,000m
IT was a good day for Basildon AC’s Webb brothers, with Mason winning the under-15 boys 3,000m in the fastest time in the country this year (9m 28.32s) while his older brother Grant got his hands on the impressive county trophy for winning the senior men’s 5,000m in 15m 44.51s with Billericay Striders’ Crispian Bloomfield third (15m 52.64s).
Grant Webb won the men's 5,000m
There was plenty more success for Basildon AC athletes in the middle distance events to add to the golds won by the Webb brothers.
Isobel Ives made it a county middle-distance double by winning the 800m (2m 16.78s) to add to the 1,500m title she won a week earlier while Kaylee Dodd looked in good form as she out-kicked Thurrock Harriers’ Gemma Holloway to win the under-20 women’s 1,500m (4m 35.14s). Holloway finished in 4m 39.37s with Chelmsford AC’s Georgia Tuckfield third in 4m 46.13s.
Karen Whitmarsh won a gold medal in the senior women’s 1,500m (4m 47.44s) with team-mate Emily Ballard third (5m 28.63s) while Stephen Strange won the senior men’s 1,500m in 4m 9.20s.
George Elliott finished with a PB of 1m 55.18s and the seventh fastest time in the country in the under-17 men’s 800m, but still had to settle for a bronze medal as Woodford Green pair Dan Rowden (1m 53.94s) and Canaan Soloman (1m 54.20s) posted exceptional times.
Elliott’s Basildon AC team-mate Joe Wakerley won a bronze in an entertaining under-15 boys 800m race in a PB of 2m 5.91s, one place behind Southend High School for Boys’ Mosope Oyelola (2m 5.31s).
The final Basildon AC middle-distance medal went to Adam Houchell who won bronze in the under-20 men’s 1,500m (4m 9.18s), finishing just behind Callum Charleston (Chelmsford AC, 4m 8.19s) in a race won by Colchester Harriers’ Jordan Rowe (3m 59.68s) who this year has signed to compete in the British Athletics League for Southend.
Jodie Judd (384) leading the under-17 women's 3,000m
Jodie Judd, competing for Castle View School, added to her medal collection by winning the under-17 women’s 3,000m in 10m 37.12s and there was double medal success for Thurrock Harriers in the under-13 1,500 metres.
Harry Parker won a silver in the under-13 boys race (4m 56.14s) while Hayley Instance won bronze in the under-13 girls 1,500m (5m 16.64s).
Keith Palmer (Southend AC) picked up bronze in the 3k walk (20m 07.42s).
Poppy Lake (centre) on top of the podium for the under-20 women's high jump
POPPY Lake improved her own championship record to win the under-20 women’s high jump in 1.75m.
Lake, a student at Southend High School for Girls, will be off to Loughborough University next year but says she is keen to come back in 2015 and extend her record even further in her final year as an under-20.
Thurrock Harriers’ Chay Clark won bronze behind Lake (1.60m) while her team-mate Lucy Howes won gold in the senior women’s high jump (1.50m).
Rayleigh’s Robert Runicman (1.75m) finished behind Chelmsford team-mate Thomas Hewes (1.80m) in the under-15 high jump. The pair are the two top-ranked jumpers nationally this season.
In the under-13 boys high jump, there was gold for Cecil Jones College’s Ren Mansfield who cleared 1.35m with Southend High’s Michael Akhigbe finishing third with 1.25m.
Just two centimetres separated winner Fluke Ladphanna (12.22m), from Castle View School, and Southend AC’s Inigo Iruskieta (12.20m) in an extremely tight under-17 men’s triple jump final while, also in the triple jump, Basildon AC’s David Abiona won silver in the under-20 competition (13.16m) and Iona Doyle (Southend AC) picked up bronze in the under-15 girls event (9.21m).
Billericay’s Terry Lucas (Chelmsford AC) won gold in the under-20 men’s long jump with a leap of 6.73m.
Lucas was a former pupil at Mayflower and a current pupil at the Billericay school, Connie Forman, won the under-15 girls long jump with a leap of 5.09m.
Basildon AC’s Kiera Bainsfair leaped to a silver medal in the under-13 girls long jump (4.51m) while Cecil Jones College pupil Kieran Pottle won the same colour in the under-17 men’s long jump with 6.23m.
In the pole vault, ex-Basildon AC pole-vaulter Shannon Connolly cleared 3.25m to win the under-20 women’s competition.