Disappointing day at Leigh

The second of the Northern League Track and Field meetings(Division 2W) was at Leigh Sports Village. After an exciting first match the `unavailable’ list had lengthened and the Liverpool Pembroke Sefton club were struggling to cover events particularly the female ones. The male sprinters delivered with Adam Thomson(23.3) and Jesse Roberts(24.5) doubling up in the 200m and Luke Edwards(50.8) plus Danny Higham (49.7) doing likewise at 400m. Danny also had a win in the 100m with 11.9. Elsewhere on the track there were some good runner-up slots, Kyle Nicholls in the 3K Steeplechase(10.50.4). Jack Crook ran one of his best races ever with a time of 2.04.7 for 800m. James Loftus was sound in third in the 5000m with a time of 16.40.9 and Mark Wynne surprised with a B win of 17.02.1.

There were only two throwers, Dave Brown and Dave Readle but they amassed a pile of points most notably through Readle`s Shot Putt win of 11.88m. Although only 4th in the Triple Jump Dominic O’Hanlon is progressing with 11.50m leap and likewise training partner Matt Low, second in the B event with 10.94m. Billy Williams was third in the High Jump(1.80m). Although unfortunately disqualified in the 4 x 100m the sprinters came back to dominate the 4 x 400m relay.

The absences were particularly noticeable among the women. Emma Givens recorded a win, the 100m Hurdles in 17.0 and Jenny Pyatt took the Discus with 36.91m to add to second in the Javelin(33.63m). Thereafter there were a lot of courageous third spots and doubling up duties that kept hope alive but too many events were simply not covered at all. In the end LPS were in close battle with the St Helens club for fourth team overall and appear to have lost out by the tiniest of of scores. The club can recover from this, there is enough talent available, but the next match needs a bigger collective effort.

Kirsty Longley did not neglect her duties at Leigh with two third places, the 800m(2.27.3) and 30000m (11.08.4) but she was to have greater joy the following day. A field of 2700 faced the starter for the Mersey Tunnel 10K Race. No other woman was in Kirsty`s class and she tore through headwinds to record 37.58. Lisa Gawthorn, another who also had done her duty at Leigh, ran 41.31 for fifth female placing.

Middle distance runners shine at Trafford

The Trafford Grand Prix meeting offered LPS middle distance runners the opportunity to attack personal best times or assess their progress. While not setting a personal best at 1500m Rosie Johnson`s time of 4.18.21 was sufficient to haul her up to fourth in the UK rankings. A very satisfactory result.

Jonathan Bride must have had the broadest smile though,, as he at last broke the two minute barrier for 800m with a sparkling 1.59.47. Jack Crook is heading in the same direction as he posted a PB of 2.00.71. He`s developing this season into a mature and confident two-lapper. Another member of the same squad Korey Hallett-Blanch also PB`d, nearly sneaking under the two minute barrier as well with 2.00.13. Almost unnoticed there was a result at Trafford that matched that of older athletes. Under 17, Matt Richardson, ran a brilliant 2.03.34 for his 800m race. Clearly he will be one to watch as the season unfolds.

Charles Gains

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