This Sunday was the first meet of the season in the East Anglian League with athletes descending on the Sportspark from Peterborough, Colchester & Tendering, Diss, Southend, Braintree and newcomers Waveney Valley. It was a meeting where CoNAC led from the start. Encouraged by the regular score announcements, many of our athletes achieved PBs as we went on to a storming victory, finishing around 450 points ahead of second placed Peterborough. It was a hard battle for our U15 boys who finished equal first place with Colchester. We won all the other age groups won by a country mile. The rain managed to hold off for most of the day but, relays would not be the same without a downpour!
Many thanks to our hard working scorers Stuart and Andrea who were somewhat hindered from the start with the late entering of team sheets. Also a big thank you to our team of field marshals and track referees and our wonderful catering department who kept us fed & watered throughout the day.
These meetings are managed and delivered entirely by volunteers who give up their time to support the club. As the season goes on it would be nice to see a few more faces coming forward - please contact Suzy Ashworth for more details.
Well done CoNAC – let’s keep this motivation going and do more of the same this coming Sunday 19 May for the Eastern Young Athletes' League match at Ipswich.
The next East Anglian League meeting is at Braintree on Sunday 23 June - anyone interested in helping as an official please contact Tony Bradfield and to be part of our support team please contact Suzy Ashworth.
Team Norfolk had its first ever outing at the weekend and produced an outstanding performance at Woodford Green to win the opening match by almost 90 points.
We were competing in the Upper Age Group (U17 and U20) in the Southern Premier Division of the UK Youth Development League. In this league CoNAC combines forces with Diss AC, Thetford AC, West Norfolk AC and Ryston Runners. This combined approach paid dividends as a comprehensive match win was played out.
Our ever-faithful team managers Lorraine Brown and Jacqui Green filled most event spaces and the athletes did the rest. There were numerous outstanding performances, both on an individual and team level.
Please click here to view the full results.
This was a great start to the season for these key age groups - let's hope we can maintain this level throughout the season.
Please click here to download a copy of the Entry Form for these Championships.
Please click here to download a copy of the Entry Form for these Championships.
Over 180 turned out for our annual Track & Field Presentation Evening last night as members, their families and friends gathered at the Mercure Hotel in Norwich for a sit-down dinner, presentation and disco.
Paul Evans, Olympic athlete at the 1992 and 1996 Games presented the awards to our athletes with John Richardson, London 2012 Olympic torch bearer and paralympic Gamesmaker presenting the awards to our volunteers.
The top honours went to:
Please click here for a full list of this year's winners.
Special thanks go to Tanya Daniels for organising the evening. If you have any feedback that might help further improve the event for next year then please click here to send Tanya an email.
It has been great to have the club’s Olympian Barbara Parker completing her training in Norwich for the 3000m Steeplechase and 5000m in London. A club member since 1996 and competing in this her second Olympic Games expectations were high for a place in the final of the 3000m Steeplechase. Sadly it was not to be, as she missed out on a spot in the final by just one place with a sixth place finish in her heat.
Having also qualified for the 5000m, her secondary event, she had another bite at the cherry. It once again proved to be a tall order in a world class field. Sadly a place in the final was not forthcoming but Barbara had the consolation of running a personal best time recorded at 15min 12.18secs.
Not totally happy with her performances but Barbara vows to carry on to Rio. We all wish her every success for the future. It was great to see her down at the club training and mixing with the youngsters which hopefully will inspire them all to greater efforts to achieve.
The club's junior team competing on home ground completed a comfortable victory over league leaders Stevenage and North Herts AC in the penultimate National Junior League Thames Division fixture. On a glorious sunny day, a rare occurrence this summer, the club took the honours with a 71 point winning margin. An added bonus came with Iona Lake winning the Female Athlete of the Match Award. She made mincemeat of the opposition when recording a winning 5min 04.1secs in the 1500m Steeplechase, a time that places her third in the Under 20 UK ranking list.
Stevenage still hold pole position in the league and with one match remaining it will take a supreme CoNAC effort to topple them from the top spot. It will be a case of all hands to the pump if the club is to stand any chance of making it to the Eliminator Final for a chance of making it back into the Premier League for 2013.
At the other end of age scale the British Masters T & F Championships took place over the weekend at the Moorways Stadium in Derby. Carole Filer and Robert Cheverton made their long trip well worthwhile with Carole medalling in four events while Robert was happy to settle for a single silver.
Carole created a new British record when winning the Over 55 High Jump with a clearance of 1.42m. Her second gold medal came in the 80m Hurdles in which she recorded a pleasing 13.64secs. Silver medals came in the Long jump with an effort of 4.56m and in the 300m Hurdles in which posted a time of 52.65secs. Robert tackled the Over 55 5000m and he can be pleased with the result achieved; his time of 17min 27.98secs was good enough to give him the runners up position.
Also making the long trip to Derby was Melanie Brown who competed in the Over 40 200m and was delighted to take bronze in a time of 28.23secs.
Great Yarmouth & District AC are hosting a Network Day at Wellesley Road, Great Yarmouth on Sunday 22 July, including the final round of the summer Quadkids series - please click here for full details.
Barbara Parker's Olympic preparation continues at a pace with a solid run in the 3000m Steeplechase at the Aviva London Grand Prix held on a very damp Saturday at the Crystal Palace.
Barbara's intention was to improve on her British record of 9min 24.24secs but sadly this did not transpire. She was up against Romania's Ancuta Bobocel and Latvia's Polma Jelizarova who were always in contention throughout. The early pace was on record schedule but fell away latterly but Barbara still looked set to take the top honours. However, late into the final lap she was not able to conjure up a finishing spurt that should have taken her to victory. At the end of tough race she had to settle for third place in a time of 9min 29.22secs and confesses to be a somewhat disappointed and is very aware that she will have to be more competitive if she is to make the Olympic final.
In the Great Britain team that will compete in the London Olympics is club member Barbara Parker who received confirmation today of her selection for the 3000m Steeplechase. Additionally, as she has also achieved the "A" standard Barbara has been nominated to participate in the 5000m.
Barbara who is based in the USA and coached by husband Sean is at present back home in Norfolk and making regular appearances at Sportspark where she is training with many of the club's endurance squad. On Thursday she flies out to Paris where she will be competing on Friday evening in the Diamond League fixture in her favoured event the 3000m Steeplechase.
Many congratulations on your Olympic selection and all the very best from all at the Club!
There was acute disappointment for City of Norwich AC athlete Mitch Goose who was in Helsinki to compete for Great Britain in his first senior track representative honour. He lined up alongside team mate Mo Farah in the 5000m and was looking forward with relish to the challenge.
Expectations were high with Mitch mixing it with Europe's best until 4000m when disaster struck! A badly torn calf muscle reduced him to little more than a hobble. For a distraught Mitch dropping out was not an option and he gamely carried on to the finish.
Now on crutches Mitch has returned home for treatment in the hope that he will not be out of action for very long. Fingers crossed.
Conditions for the club’s competing endurance athletes at the Olympic Trails staged in Birmingham were far from perfect with very windy conditions prevailing throughout the weekend which resulted in races becoming slow tactical affairs.
Barbara Parker was annoyed with herself when she was outgunned by Jo Pavey in the final straight of the 5000m. Always in contention and looking extremely comfortable throughout the race coming off the final bend looked set for victory. However, Pavey had different ideas and dug deep to overtake Barbara over the final 25m to snatch victory. Barbara, who clocked 15min 55.57secs, by finishing runner up qualified by right at the distance for the London Olympics. Additionally she as British record holder at the 3000m Steeplechase and having attained the Olympic A standard at the distance is on the horns of a dilemma! Does she now settle to do the Steeplechase or perhaps double up!
Mitch Goose heads off to Helsinki on Tuesday where he competes in his first senior major championship for GB. Mitch will be participating in the European Track & Field Championships where he will team up with Mo Farah and Rory Fraser in the 5000m. He preceded his departure with a 5th place finish in the 5000m at the Trails when recording 14mins 09.70secs. With less than 800m to go he lost contact with the leading quartet and was disappointed at not being able to make up the lost ground.
In Iona Lake we may have another Barbara Parker in the making! Competing in the 3000m Steeplechase she proved that she has got what it takes to be a top flight steeplechaser. She recorded a modest finishing time of 10mins 36.06secs, albeit a personal best, and displayed a superb hurdling technique. Given that she is a novice at this event her potential to improve is considerable.
With just the winner of the six heats and two fastest losers to progress to the final of the 800m Paul Goodall and Rick Ward had a mountain to climb. In tactical races due to the windy conditions Paul recorded 1min 52.28secs while Rick managed 1min 54.58secs.
Michael Painter is Barcelona bound! Conditions over the weekend at the England Athletics Under20/Under23 Track & Field Championships staged at the Bedford Stadium were appalling with gale force winds gusting up to 40mph. Happily this did not distract Michael from producing a superb performance in the Hammer. Prior to the meeting he had already posted a personal best throw of 73.00m so was in confident mood. This he carried through to the championship when a mighty effort of 72.34m secured him gold and guaranteed him a place in the Great Britain team that will compete in the World Junior Track & Field Championships that are being held in Barcelona mid July.
Fellow Hammer thrower Callum Brown was hoping to join him as he had previously exceeded the qualifying distance of 71.00m but sadly for him on the day he was not at his best and could only produce an effort of 67.21m that placed him fourth.
In the Under23 EA Championships, James McLachlan, home from his studies in the USA, collected silver in the Long Jump with an effort of 7.23m. Next weekend James will again be testing himselfat the Olympic Trials that are being held in Birmingham. Endurance athletes Tom Hook (1500m) and Iona Lake (3000m Steeplechase) fell well short of their own high expectations in their respective events. They must now bury their disappointment, pick themselves up and produce the performances off which they are capable.
In hammer throwing circles CoNAC athletes Michael Painter and Callum Brown are certainly making their mark. Both competed in the Bedford International Games over the weekend in which Painter moved the 6kg Hammer out to a new personal best recorded at a massive 73.34m. His effort was good enough to place him firmly on top of the 2012 Under 20 UK ranking list. In the same competition Callum Brown also broke the 70metre barrier with a throw of 70.57m guaranteeing the club a top two finish.
Over next weekend they will be returning to Bedford to compete in the England Athletics U20 National Track &Field Championships where the prize could be a place in the Great Britain team that will compete in the World Junior Championships being staged in Barcelona in mid July.
However they face formidable opposition from USA based Nick Miller (Border Harriers) who has a personal best throw of 72.80m and is currently ranked second in the UK. It will be a fascinating competition to watch with the top two finishers almost guaranteed a place in the British team.
The Bedford international Games and the British Milers Club Grand Prix staged at Watford unfortunately clashed with the club's Southern Athletics League fixture at Chelmsford which meant that senior team was a little thin on the ground, the end result being a disappointing last place finish despite the sterling efforts of those who competed. However, mention must be made of James McLachlan who having just returned from his studies in the USA, competed in five events, winning the Long Jump with an effort of 7.00m and the Triple Jump when moving out to 13.13m.
At the British Milers Club Grand Prix held at Watford on Saturday evening a delighted Nick Earl knocked over 30secs off his previous best 5000m time when recording 14min 42.15secs. Tom Hook looked to be in better shape when completing his 1500m effort in 3min 54.45secs just a few strides away from posting a new personal best. Iona Lake, a novice at the event, tested herself at the 3000m Steeplechase. She was content to record a time of 10min 38.50 but knows that she is capable of a lot quicker and will look to improve in the England Athletics Championships this coming weekend.
Great news from Eugene, Oregon! Club athlete Barbara Parker racing in the Prefontaine Classic Diamond League meeting broke the British Record for the 3000m Steeplechase when recording a very fast 9min 24.24secs. Her time eclipsed the previous record held by Helen Clitheroe by over 5 seconds.
One of the club’s absent stars Mitch Goose (Iona University) continues to make his mark in the USA. Competing down in Jackonville, Florida he secured his place in the National Collegiate T&F Championships final at 5000m. His qualifying time of 14min 17.74secs, very modest by his standards, secured his final place after a last lap burn-up proving not only does he have the stamina plus the ability to change pace. Another USA based athlete Ruth Senior (New Mexico University) will also be testing herself at National Collegiate T&F Championships being held in Des Moines, Iowa in two weeks time. Competing in Austin, Texas over the weekend she qualified for the 3000m Steeplechase when clocking 10min 21.58secs, again a modest time but achieved in very windy conditions.
Ruth and Mitch have been invited to compete in the Olympic Trials that will be held in Birmingham over the weekend of 22-24 July along with Barbara Parker (3000m steeplechase), James Mclachlen (long jump), Paul Goodall & Rick Ward (800m) and Hollie Rowland (5000m). All bar Hollie competed for Norfolk at schools level so it is great to see them still in the sport in the senior ranks and competing in the top flight.
Please click here to view the results from the 2012 Eastern Veterans Track & Field League.
Please click here to view the results from the first round of matches in this season's Eastern Young Athletes' League.
Two of the Club’s long serving members are hitting top form in the USA. Barbara Parker and Mitch Goose competing at Stanford University California over the weekend produced performances right out of the top drawer. Barbara who has aspirations of making it to the London Olympics at the 3000m Steeplechase, on this occasion contested the flat 5,000m. Coached by husband Sean she produced a lifetime best performance when recording 15min 14.26secs a time that is well inside the Olympic “A” qualifying standard set at 15min 20secs. An added bonus for Barbara was that she was able to “pip” home based star Stephanie Twell in the run for the line.
Mitch Goose, based at Iona University, found himself in the toughest 5,000m race of his track career. With his personal best standing at 14min 02.44secs achieved in 2010 he was looking to post new figures. This he did with aplomb, when maintaining concentration and good form throughout the race to record a massive new personal best time of 13min 34.41secs. Selection for the European Track & Field Championships being held in Finland takes place in early June and with the “A” standard for the 5,000m posted at 13min 40secs, Mitch must now be in with a strong shout for selection for the Great Britain team.
In the same meeting Hollie Rowland produced a personal best performance over 10,000m when recording 34min 28.25secs while Ruth Senior making a comeback from injury posted a time of 16min 38.55secs for 5,000m
Please click here to find the results of our first East Anglian League match - which took place today at the Sportspark - along with the subsequent league table.
World Champions! We can now boast two! Carole Filer and Jane Clarke returned home from Jyvaskyla Finland with four gold medals between them after competing over a five day period in the World Masters Indoor Track & Field Championships.
Carole Filer hit the gold standard in the Over 55 Pentathlon in which she put 4,071 points on the board. She started the competition with a 10.38sec time in the 60m hurdles followed by a 1.42m clearance in the High Jump. A 7.47m effort in the Shot secured additional valuable points with her penultimate event the Long Jump moving her to the top of leader board, in which she recorded a leap of 4.48m. The 800m was the final event of her gruelling day which she completed in 3min 04.78secs, a time fast enough to ensure her place on top of the podium. In the individual High Jump a clearance of 1.37m was good enough for her to claim her second gold medal.
Competing in the Over 50 category endurance athlete Jane Clarke went for a double! Gold medal No 1 came in a hotly contested 3000m but she was happy to report that after a very tough battle against a strong Spanish contingent she held to take the title. After a two day break she took to the boards again in the 1500m and once again proved to be the best in her age category when securing her second gold medal on the championship in a time of 4min 59secs.
On home turf Hammer thrower Michael Painter is getting nearer to making the required qualifying distance of 71.00m in order to be considered for a place in the Great Britain team that will compete in the World Junior Track & Field Championships being held in Barcelona later in the summer. On Friday at the UEA Sportspark he closed the gap to under 2 metres when moving the 6kgs Hammer out to an impressive 69.22m.
Stateside, Mitch Goose continues to display promising form. Competing in Princeton New Jersey he tested himself over 1500m and was relatively happy when posting a time of 4min 46.81secs, not quite a personal best but certainly well within striking distance.
Club athlete Callum Brown is certainly making his mark early in the 2012 track and field season. Hammer thrower Brown throughout the winter months has been stringing together some impressive performances with the 6kg implement. Just two weeks ago in Cambridge he set a personal best with an effort of 68.55m and on Saturday in the Thetford AC Throws Meeting held at Bury St Edmunds he moved the Hammer out to a massive 71.16m. Not only was his effort a new personal best but significantly it passed the qualifying distance required to be considered for selection to compete for Great Britain in the World Junior Track & Field Championships that will be held in Barcelona in July.
Brown’s new mark places him second in the UK ranking list behind USA based Nick Miller (Border Harriers) who has recorded a throw of 72.80m. With just two places available for selection Brown is currently sitting pretty but for sure he will be looking over his shoulder at club mate Michael Painter who has already thrown 68.51m and must feel confident the qualifying distance is well within his capabilities. Hopefully both athletes can surpass Nick Miller’s mark as it would be wonderful achievement to have Brown and Painter representing Great Britain in Barcelona.
We have a new Volunteer Coordinator. Yvette McKillop has taken on this new role and we welcome her on board.
Yvette is very keen to hear from anyone who can help CoNAC be the best it can be - please click here to send her an email or call her on 07979 598097.
Please click here to read about a varity of roles in which you could volunteer your services to help at City of Norwich AC.
The results of the Open meeting held at the Sportspark on Saturday 24 March can be found here. We are now considering making this an annual event.
Athletes with a learning disability met in Manchester over the weekend of Friday 16 and Saturday 17 March at the 7th INAS World Indoor Athletics Championships.
The championships, hosted by Mencap Sport and Manchester City Council, took place at the Sportcity Athletics stadium in Manchester. They attracted 80 of the world's top athletes with a learning disability, representing 12 nations. CoNAC members Kimberley Aspland, Holly Durbridge, Declan Manning and Kimberley Aspland competed in these Championships and all came away with some superb performances.
Holly registered some new personal best in her individual events and then ran a storming leg in the 4 x 200m relay to help the British team gain the silver medal.
Declan competed in the shot and despite being the youngest in the field by some margin accredited himself very well when finishing 7th in a new pb of 10.07m.
Kimberley had a busy weekend running in three events and came away with two medals. In the 800m final she ran a controlled race to finish in 2:37.03 to collect the silver medal. To finish off the weekend she then ran in the 4 x 400m relay team that came away as World Champions.
The Norfolk County AAA Track & Field Championships will take place over two days this year. The bulk of the events will be held on Saturday 12 May at the Sportspark in Norwich wilth the balance happening two days later at Lynnsport in King's Lynn.
Starters, timekeepers, field judges, track judges - we need a continual stream of new officials to help run track & field meetings.
A level 2 course specifically for these disciplines has now been arranged for Sunday 1 April in Norwich - please click here for more details.
When you are ready to apply for a UKA officials licence, please click here for an application form.
If you would like any further information about becoming a track or field official, please contact Clive Poyner for more details.
Please click here to read all about the 2012 QuadKids programme for Norfolk and to download a registration form.
The new opening times for the athletic track at the Sportspark have now been published - please click here for full details.
Hammer throwing is one athletic activity that can only be contested outdoors! Braving the weekend's inclement weather Michael Painter and Callum Brown travelled to Loughborough to compete in the Winter Throws Trials. The duo certainly made their trip well worthwhile when recording a one - two finish in the Under 20 6kg event. Painter produced a fine personal best effort when moving the Hammer out to 67.05m to take the honours while on this occasion Brown had to settle for second place with an effort of 66.95m.
Brown and Painter now head the UK Under 20 ranking list by a huge margin and must be looking to qualify to represent Great Britain in the World Junior Track & Field Championships that will be held in Barcelona in July. The qualifying mark they are looking to achieve is 71.00m and this early form indicates that the distance is well within their compass!
Further afield in Youngstown USA, City club athlete James McLachlen representing Loyola University Chicago continues to impress indoors when filling the top spot and runners up position; in the Long Jump and Triple Jump in which he recorded 7.57m and 15.01m respectively. In Boston, Hollie Rowland representing Iona University competed over 5000m in which she finished 3rd in 16min 29.82secs - a time a little below her personal best.
The Club's young and up and coming track and field stars made their way to Birmingham at the weekend to compete in the England Athletics Under 15, Under 17 and Under 20 Indoor Championships held in the impressive National Indoor Arena.
While there was an absence of medal winning performances this national event proved to be a true learning experience for those competing club athletes. Sprinter Clieo Stephenson, a first year Under 20 found herself up against European Gold medallist, Jodie Williams in the final of the 60m. Her time of 7.82secs gained her a creditable 5th place.
Under 15 Boy Ashley Cooper put his disappointing Long Jump performance behind him when progressing to the semi-final of the 200m. To do this he had to create a new personal best time 24.96secs but sadly it was not fast enough to take a place in the final. Laura Johnson competing in Under 17 Girls 60m made it to the semi-final when posting a time of 8.14secs but was not able to progress further.
Pole Vault specialist Sasha Birrell cleared 3.10m in the Under 17 Girls competition an effort good enough to put her in 7th position.
Over in Albuquerque, USA, James Senior competing indoors in the Mountain West Conference Meet displayed much improved form over 800m. A heat time of 1min 53.09secs gained him a place in the final in which he was placed 6th when recording 1min 52.59secs, a time just short of his outdoor best.
This evening's meeting at the Sportspark set the scene for the forthcoming Track & Field season. Chairman Clive Poyner and general secretary Rob Kinge described the challenges and opportunites which lie ahead - please click here to view this evening's presentation slides.
The important thing now is how we move forward from here. Volunteers are needed in several crucial areas - please click here to see the various roles on offer and here for a Volunteer Application Form.
If you have any questions about how you can help with CoNAC Track & Field over the coming season, please contact Clive Poyner or call him on 07809 835019. Thank you.
Mitch Goose gets faster and faster! The USA based CoNAC-er's purple patch continues. A week ago competing indoors in Seattle he created a new lifetime best over 3000m when recording an impressive 7min 51.75secs placing him fourth on the UK ranking list.
On Saturday the Armory Track and Field Centre, New York was the stage for his latest exploit. Competing in the indoor mile, an event in which he had not previously posted a time and as a consequence found himself in a slower graded race. Unfazed, he took off from the gun and continued to open the gap on his fellow competitors. Mid race the capacity crowd got behind Goose urging him onto greater effort. Duly obliging and going on to lap a number of competitors he crossed the line over 20 seconds ahead of his nearest rival to record a time of 3min 59.26secs. Two hours later he was back on the track helping Iona University to take the honours in the Medley Relay. Running the 1600m leg he posted a time of 4min 07secs to round off an impressive day's work.
In the space of less than two weeks Mitch has rewritten the Norfolk record books. Since 1971 international star Mike Tagg has held the 3000m record with 7m 54.0secs; while 3min 59.36scs was the mile record time posted by GB international David Heath in 1989. Both records - held by two of Norfolk's finest ever athletes - had stood for quite some considerable time so it is to Mitch's credit that he has been able to create new figures at this early stage in his senior career.
His next race comes in three weeks time when he will compete in the National Collegiate Athletic Association Track & Field Indoor Championships in a quality field over 3000m. In his own words "It will be by far my toughest challenge to date but I am looking forward to mixing it with the very best".
Racing in the USA Mitch Goose produced the 3000m race of his life. Only a few days previously he had created a new personal best for the distance when breaking the 8 minute barrier for the first time. Happily his purple patch continues with a storming run in Seattle at the Husky Indoor Invitational. In a class field it was only in the final lap that Goose lost touch with the leaders but his courageous running produced a time of 7min 51.75secs a six second improvement on his previous best and a performance that now places him 4th on the current UK ranking list.
In the same meeting Hollie Rowland was contesting the 5000m with good effect. In a tough race she displayed much improved form to knock over twelve seconds of her previous personal best for the distance when recording 16min 19.69secs. In the Don Kirby Elite Invitational Indoor Meeting in Albuquerque, James Senior continued in his winning ways over 600m when recording a fast and new personal best 80.25secs for the distance. In the Long Jump James McLachlan had to settle for the runners up position in which he recorded a creditable effort of 7m 47cm.
Over the past weekend the Sheffield Indoor Arena hosted the UK trials for the World Indoor Track & Field Championships in which Rick Ward was competing over 800m. A pleasing time of 1min 51.82secs saw him safely qualify for the six man final but it was a very disappointed Ward who could not produce his best form, fading in the final 200m to finish fifth.
CoNAC athletes currently based in America are making their presence felt where they are producing some excellent performances. Long jumper James McLachlan presently studying at Loyala University, Chicago has put himself on top of the 2012 UK ranking list. Competing in the Tadd Metzger Indoor Invitational held in Kenosha, Wisconsin he produced a new personal best effort of 7.72m taking him that bit nearer to the magical 8.00m barrier. Home based coach Denis Costello was delighted to learn of this performance and is confident that as the year progresses there will be further improvement from James.
New York based at Iona University, Mitch Goose and Hollie Rowland travelled to Boston, Massachusetts to compete in the BU Terrier Indoor Invitational. Mitch racing over 3000m broke through the 8 minute barrier for the first time when recording a superb 7min 58.11secs, a new personal best by over 12 seconds and a time that places third on the 2012 UK ranking list. Hollie competed over a testing 5000m was pleased to knock four seconds of her previous best when posting a time of 16min 31.80secs a performance that places her second on the UK 2012 ranking list.
Much further south in Albuquerque, Ruth and James Senior currently based at New Mexico University were pounding the boards in the New Mexico Indoor Invitational. James produced a winning personal best performance in the 600m when recording 82.31secs while elder sister Ruth had to be content with a time of 4min 59.30secs for her effort in the 1 mile event.
The club’s Beijing Olympian, Barbara Parker now living in North Atlanta tells us that her preparations for London 2012 are progressing well. She is looking to qualify for the 3000m Steeplechase so for starters, later this month, she is looking to run indoors over the mile distance then she intends to tackle a 5000m indoors. For sure her progress to qualifying for London is well mapped out through the expertise of her coach and husband Sean.
Club athlete Scott Greeves was keen to equate the achievement of club mate Rick Ward who took the senior South of England 800m indoor title last week at the Lee Valley Athletic Arena. Greeves competing in the second weekend of the championships cruised into the Under 17 Boys 800m final when winning his heat at a canter.
A late Saturday afternoon final against tough opposition proved to be a true test of his ability to compete. He did not disappoint running a tactically sound race to secure a close victory in 1min 59.22secs. His clocking was a personal best and his first time under the two minute barrier.
Sunday saw him take to the boards again in the 1500m and he was delighted to secure his second medal of the championship when crossing the line in 4min 09.78scs, another personal best, to secure the silver medal.
Sprinter Clieo Stephenson has now progressed into the Under 20 ranks. Still only 16 years old she was well aware that her opposition would be from the top drawer. Competing in the 60m she successfully negotiated heat and semi-final to take her place in the final. Running to the best of her ability she was a pleased as punch to take the bronze medal in 7.82secs slightly slower than her heat winning time 7.80secs but nevertheless a very satisfying day’s work. Clieo now has the honour of creating a Norfolk County record over 60m as an Under11, Under 13, Under 15, Under 17 and now at Under 20 level - a very impressive record indeed!
Senior Carl Goose has never run quicker over 1500m. In his heat he ran 3min 56.77secs to qualify for the final as a fastest loser. As expected the final was a cracker with Carl mixing it with the best. At the end of a fast and furious race Carl had to settle for a sixth place finish and was timed at 3min 59.39, his second time under the 4minute barrier in the space of four hours.
Laura Johnson made her debut at the championships. Competing in the Under 17 Ladies 60m sprint she created a new personal best 8.09secs to move into the next round. Sadly her time of 8.13secs in the semi-final was not quite good enough to make it through to the final. In the Under 17 Girls Long Jump Kate Vickery’s effort of 4.87m placed her 8th in an event in which 22 competitors took part. For Ashley Cooper it is his first year as an Under 15 and he acquitted himself well in the 200m when timed at a fast 25.33secs, placing him second in his heat. Sadly it was not quite good enough for him to progress further.
The Lee Valley Indoor Athletic Arena, North London proved to be a happy hunting ground for athlete Rick Ward. Competing in the South of England Indoor Track & Field Championship over 800m he put an indifferent 2011 track season firmly behind him. Comfortably cruising through his heat in a winning time of 1min 55.8secs he lined up for the final in determined mood. Resisting the urge to move to the front he sat on the leader’s shoulder until the short home straight before moving ahead to snatch a fine victory in a time of 1min 52.82secs.
Sprinter Clieo Stephenson now competing in the Under 20 age group took on the 200m making the final when clocking 26.01secs. A time of 25.81secs in the final placed her just outside the medals when finishing 4th.
It was a sell-out at our annual track & field presentation evening on Saturday at the King's Head Hotel at Wroxham - please click here to view the full list of awards.
Message from Clive Poyner, CoNAC's chairman - the club is anticipating a significant increase in the number of prospective members early next year generated by Olympic fever. To meet this demand we will need to increase our volunteer workforce across all aspects of the track and field area.
Please click here to download more information about what will be needed. The download also contains information about a seminar for volunteers to be held on Friday 30 September at Easton College from 6.30pm.
The resurfacing of the athletic track at the Sportspark is now nearing completion and the track should be ready to re-open on Monday 26 September.
Please check with your coach to confirm when and where your sessions will take place from this date.
The final of the 2011 East Anglian League took place at Bury St Edmunds today - please click here to view the full results listings.
The expression “Dynamic Duo” best illustrates the achievements of Callum Brown and Michael Painter. These two young CoNAC-ers have both produced many outstanding performances during the summer months culminating in gold and silver medals in the Hammer at the Commonwealth Youth Games held in the Isle of Man earlier this month.
While both are proficient at the Shot and Discus, the Hammer event is where they really excel. As an Under 18 Callum Brown’s is the UK’s No 1 with a World ranking of 11th. A personal best was achieved early in the year when he produced a throw of 70m 69cm and in July broke the long-standing Norfolk Schools record of 21 years when moving the 6km hammer out to 64m 00cms. An outstanding effort and new personal best of 73m 86cms secured his selection for Great Britain at the World Youth Track & Field Championships held in Lille in July. In what proved to be his toughest competition to date with an effort of 67m 90cms he finished in a creditable 14th position from a starting field of 41 throwers. Moving on from this steep learning curve he had already secured his place in the England team to compete in the Commonwealth Youth Games. In this he was not to fall short of expectations when taking gold with a superb throw of 72m 19cms, a truly wonderful way to finish his best ever season.
Michael Painter was ranked 1st in the Under 17 age group for Hammer and filled the top spot the event in the Norfolk Schools and Anglian Schools Track & Field Championships. Gateshead in July proved to be a happy hunting ground for Michael when he took the Intermediate Boys title at the English Schools with 66m 08cms. A week later he made it a golden double when winning the UK Schools International in Cardiff with 66m 41cms. A call-up for Great Britain came next when he competed in the European Youth Games staged in Trabzon, Turkey where a personal best throw of 70m 85cms placed him in a satisfying 6th position. September saw him representing England and teaming up with Callum to take on the Commonwealth’s best in the Isle of Man. His effort of 68m 84cms was good enough to take the silver medal and to stand alongside his club mate on the victor’s rostrum.
Coached at the Club by John Painter, London 2012 will come a little early for the two boys but who is to say what they capable of achieving when the Olympic Games heads for Brazil in 2016!
Congratulations to all seven CoNAC teams who contested this year's East Anglian League - all seven have qualified for the League final at Bury St Edmunds on Sunday 18 September.
And many thanks to team manager Karen Wilson and her lieutenants for sterling work behind the scenes to coordinate this year's efforts. Please click here to view the final League standings and here for the League final timetable.
Over the weekend the Club’s up and coming stars made their way to the Bedford International Stadium. They were there to compete against the UK’s best in the England Athletics Under 17 Track and Field Championships.
After a busy two days Clieo Stephenson returned home a very contented young lady having filled the bronze medal position in both the 100m and 200m. On Saturday morning in her heat of the 100m she comfortably qualified for the afternoon final when recording 12.24secs. In the final against a strong wind she displayed her battling qualities when producing a time of 12.37secs to take a well deserved third place for bronze. Returning to the track on Sunday to take part in the 200m she equalled her personal best 25.31secs when making it to her second final of the weekend. An unhelpful lane draw put her at a disadvantage but once again her battling qualities came to the fore when she crossed the line in 25.41secs to take her second bronze medal.
Michael Painter was another busy athlete. On Saturday an effort of 46.17m gave him fourth place in the Discus while on Sunday in the Hammer a throw of 64.01m, somewhat below his best of 70.85m placed him in the bronze medal position. Michael will have an opportunity to recover his best form when in early September he competes for England in the Commonwealth Youth Games being staged in the Isle of Man.
Tom Hook surpassed his wildest dreams in the 1500m. Only qualifying for the final as a fastest loser however he toed the line on Sunday in confident mood knowing that he had to improve on his personal best of 4mins 01.40secs if he was to stand a chance of a medal. An opening lap of 61secs set him up for a fast time and put him in the leading pack. With 500m to go Tom was in a breakaway group of three and looking to challenge for a top spot. Despite his best effort he had to settle for a third placed bronze. However, to add to his joy of medalling his official time was posted as 3mins 53.79secs a huge personal best and a testament to his commitment and discipline to training
A four bronze medal haul from the Club’s youngsters in a National championship event is a wonderful achievement and for sure they can look forward to even better results in the future.
CoNAC athlete Barbara Parker headed off to Daegu, South Korea on Sunday where she will be representing Great Britain in the 3000m Steeplechase at the World Track & Field Championships. Olympian Barbara, currently based in Atlanta and a club member for many years, is a wonderful example for our young athletes. As an early teenager she took part in Sportshall athletics and attended numerous Startrack courses. When the club's Senior Ladies track & field team scaled the dizzy heights of the UK Women's League, multi-talented Barbara competed in numerous events including the javelin, high hurdles, high jump and 800m clocking up many valuable points along the way.
Having acquired a fine hurdles technique coupled with a very solid endurance base she then turned her attention to the the 3000m Steeplechase, a relatively new event for Ladies, with great success. She competed for Great Britain at the 2008 Olympics in Beijing and has also represented Great Britain in the World Indoor and European Championships. She currently heads the UK ranking list with a time of 9mins 35.46secs.
Prior to her departure to Daegu club endurance athletes Ruth Senior and Iona Lake nipped over to King's Lynn to give Barbara a help with her final preparations for the extremely tough assignment ahead. We wish her all the very best in her endeavours
Callum Brown (World Youth Championships) & Michael Painter (European Olympic Youth Festival) - Well done to both of you on your Team GB selection this year and also congratulations again to both of you for being selected to represent England 18's at the Commonwealth Youth Games on the Isle of Man in September.
While the all-weather track at the Sportspark is closed for resurfacing during July & August, many CoNAC training sessions will take place at the Henderson cinder track in Ivy Road, Norwich, NR5 8BF. Please park in the car park to the rear of the Henderson Business Centre.
Please click here to read what the Evening News had to say about us bringing the Henderson track back into regular use.
We have access to toilet facilites during coached sessions (your coach will know who has the key) but there is no trackside cover for spectators at this venue so please come prepared.
CoNAC athletes made a clean sweep at the Nationwide Eastern Region Athletics Championships for Disabled People at Northgate Stadium, Ipswich earlier today.
Taking part in the MLD (Moderate Learning Disability) category, our five athletes took part in 14 events between them and won gold in each and every event!
Individual honours went to:
* Holly Durbidge (U20) - 100m, 200m, discus
* Kimberley Aspland (U18) - 100m (14.6secs, pb), 400m (70.9secs, pb), 800m
* Adam Szucs (U20) - 100m, 200m, 400m
* Declan Manning (U20)- senior discus (28.25m, pb), senior shot
* Lewis Pryke (U18) - senior javelin, U18 60m, U18 high jump (1.59m, pb)
Congratulations on these super performances and many thanks to all the CoNAC coaches who guide and support these athletes.
We took our place in the newly-formed Southern Athletics League at Ashford on Saturday and scraped into third place by just half a match point - please click here to view the full results card.
Will Smith flew out to Dubai on 12 April with the Great Britain and Northern Ireland Junior Paralympic team and returned home with a personal medal haul of four golds and one silver in the under-18 T54 wheelchair racing class.
An impressive opening ceremony on Sunday 17 April welcomed 220 athletes from 23 countries and was followed by the 1500m final in the presence of HH Sheikh Hamdan Bin Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoun (the Crown Prince of Dubai). A strong field of 12 athletes included Will's main middle distance rival, David Scherer of Germany. During the early stages of the race the lead frequently changed and entering the final lap Will held a good position in third pace on the outside of leader Niklas Almers of Sweden with Scherer boxed-in in lane 1. On the final bend Will made his attack for victory but as Almers moved wide to block this move a gap opened up on the inside lane allowing Scherer to power into lead over the last 20m taking gold in 3:45.72 with Will having to settle for silver in 3:45.93.
Monday evening saw Will taking on hot German sprint favourite Pascal Ansorg in the under-18 100m final. Ansorg made his usual fast start and was a chair length ahead after the first 25m. By mid race Will's fast hands and balanced pushing stroke were allowing him to close the gap and with 10m to the finishing line Will hit the front and surged further ahead to win his first junior world title in 16.26 followed by Ansorg in 16.44 with local United Arab Emirates racer Mahmood Albalooshi taking a popular bronze in 17.08.
Will's first event on Tuesday was a combined under-18/under-20 200m final in a race that included GB+NI team mate Dan Lucker. From the gun Ansorg made another flying start but as the racers came off the bend Will hit the front and drove clear of the field. Over the final 50m Will extended his lead to secure a second gold medal in 28.82 with Dan Lucker making it a GB+NI one-two with a late surge to take silver in 29.22 from the Finland's Tuomo Himanka who took bronze in 29.44.
Later on Tuesday evening Will lined up for the 800m against David Scherer in what was to prove to be the most exciting race of the Championships. Following a cagey first lap, with none of the large field happy to retain the lead, Will hit the front with 300m to go and made an early break for home in an attempt to take the strong sprint finish out of the powerful Scherer. Exiting the final bend Will had built a slim 5m lead as the German moved wide into lane 3 to make his final challenge. On the home straight both racers accelerated for the finish line with Scherer slowly closing the gap. However Will refused to concede victory and dug in over the final 10m resulting in both athletes crossing the line together. Electronic timing to 1/100th of a second and a finish line photograph were unable to separate these exceptional juniors athletes and both were awarded gold medals in a time of 1:54.96 with Mahmood Albalooshi taking bronze in 1:58.55.
Wednesday was the hottest day of the championships with Will’s final event, the 400m, taking places in temperatures approaching 30c. A confident Will took an early lead, powered ahead of the field and cruised to his fourth gold medal in a time of 55.28.
On the same evening Dan Lucker also secured his first gold medal of the championships in the under-20 400m final in a time of 56.57.
"Will’s performances were exceptional" said coach Jenny Archer "He has worked very hard in training on the build up to Dubai and fully deserves his under-18 world titles."
The Great Britain and Northern Ireland team topped the overall medal table winning a record 23 gold, 14 silver and 8 bronze medals comfortably ahead of Russia (2nd), Switzerland (3rd) and Germany (4th) with hosts UAE finishing 7th.
GB+NI team manager Paula Dunn was delighted with the performance of the team saying "We’ve had a very successful championships and this continues the good progress we are making at junior and senior level!"
Will now has a busy month of domestic competition building up to the Swiss Senior Open Championships in Pratteln over 28/29 May.
Will Smith has been selected by UK Athletics to represent GB and NI at the 2011 IWAS World Junior Athletics Championships. The event takes place in Dubai over 14-21 April 2011 with the team flying out of Heathrow on 12 April.
His events in Dubai will be 100m, 200m, 400m, 800m and 1500m in the T54 wheelchair racing class.
Last year at the same event in the Czech Republic Will won 4 silver medals for the GB and NI team in the 100m, 200m, 400m and 800m competing in the under-16 age group. This year Will steps up to the under-18 group despite being just 15 at the time of the competition.
Will looks forward to renewing his rivalry with German athlete David Scherer (4 gold medals in 2010) and the Australian Declan Young (4 bronze medals in 2010) who are both the same age as Will. There's also the prospect of racing against some of the older athletes in the under-18 age group.
Will has been training hard over the winter under the guidance of his coach Jenny Archer (based at Kingston upon Thames) and is now working on race sharpness at the UEA track in Norwich along with conditioning sessions at the Parkwood Leisure centre in Dereham.
With the 2012 Paralympics now on the horizon the 2011 World Junior Championships are a great opportunity for young athletes to set competitive times to catch the eye of the selectors.
The Lee Valley Athletic Centre, North London proved to be a happy hunting ground for members the Club competing in the Eastern Counties Indoor Track & Field Championships.
Young Ashley Cooper looks to be an up and coming star for the club. A relative newcomer to athletics he certainly made his presence felt when creating two Championship Best Performances. Competing in the Under 13 Boys Long Jump he produced a leap of 4m98 to take gold and then stormed to victory in the 60m Sprint in a very impressive 8.04secs.
Laura Green also produced two golden performances in the Under 20 Ladies Triple and Long Jump. Her Long Jump win came with an effort of 5m35 followed by victory in the Triple Jump with a personal best 10m88.
A 2min 02.29secs time in the Under 17 Boys 800m time was good enough to give Scott Greeves the silver medal. Happily he then went one better in the 1500m when comfortably winning gold in a time of 4min 29.71secs.
In the sprints Cleio Stephenson also grabbed a brace of medals. Under 17 Cleio took gold in the 200m when clocking 25.45secs having taken silver in the 60m, edged out of gold by the thickness of her vest. He time of 7.68secs proved to be an impressive new personal best.
Kiera Mooney picked up bronze in the Under 17 Girls 300m when equalling her personal best time of 46.61secs. Bronze came the way of Hannah Maher in the Under 15 Girls Shot with an effort of 8m04 and a leap of 3m54 also secured bronze for Madison Stubbs in the Under 13 Girls Long Jump.
The club’s athletes certainly know how to mix and match their activities. A week ago they were ploughing through ankle deep mud at the English National Cross Country Championships while over the past weekend they were displaying their talents in three important indoor track and field championships in Birmingham, London and Cardiff.
The National Indoor Arena in Birmingham hosted the England Athletics Under 15/17 and Under 20 Indoor National Championships. Making it to a final was a tough call so Clieo Stephenson’s weekend two-medal haul was an impressive performance. On Saturday, after making it through the heat and semi-final in the Under 17’s 60m Sprint she was delighted to take bronze in a fast 7.79secs. On Sunday in the 200m final she went one better when producing a superb time of 25.31sec to take the silver medal. Younger sister Ellie competing the same age group in time could be chasing down Cleio when making it through to semi-final of the 60m but sadly her time of 8.09secs was quite good enough for a place in the final.
Kiera Mooney produced a time of 2min 21.30secs when finishing third in her heat of the Under 17’s 800m, a position good enough to earn her a place in Sunday’s final. While improving her time down to 2min 19.09secs it was only good enough to place her in a respectable 5th place. Shot exponent Michael Painter was another to finish in 5th position. Competing in the Under 17 Division he moved the shot out to 13m22, which is a new personal best performance indoor and out.
Lee Valley Athletic Centre, North London proved to be a happy hunting ground for Carole Filer who was taking part on the British Masters Athletic Federation Championships. Competing in the Over 55 Division she collected three gold medals. A time of 10.56secs in the 60m Hurdles secured her first gold of the weekend. This followed by gold number two in the High Jump when clearing 1m36 a new age group British record. Number three soon followed when she created another age group British record in the Long Jump when moving out to 4m46. For Tessa Pike her weekend proved to be desperately disappointing. Closing in to secure a gold medal in the Over 50 1500m she severely damaged a calf muscle in the final 100m and sadly was unable to finish.
Junior GB International Rick Ward made his way to Cardiff for Saturday’s McCain Inter-City Indoor Challenge. Competing over 800m for North London Lions he took on the pace only to be badly “chopped” by Muktahr Mohamed (Sheffield Flames) who was subsequently disqualified. At the end of a torrid battle he had to settle for third place in a time of 1min 52.57secs. Later in the day he proved his racing fitness over the 800m distance when handing over the baton in the Medley Relay comfortably in the lead to the outgoing 600m athlete. It was disappointing that on the final leg the outgoing 200m runner failed to secure the baton within the takeover area and the team was disqualified.
Happily it did not have an effect on the final result as the North London Lions took the overall team title plus a winner’s cheque of £10000.00 that will be shared between the team members. Ward is eagerly looking forward to receiving his share of the prize pot!
On Saturday 8 January a group of young CONAC-ers were given the opportunity to be coached by Olympic gold and silver medallist Darren Campbell.
This was organized by Aviva, who are making a series of adverts promoting the 2012 Olympics; the kids were filmed over the morning running in different directions as Darren Campbell coached them and looked on.
The weather wasn’t great but the kids spirit wasn’t dampened, this was mainly down to the very friendly Darren Campbell, who was more than happy to engage with the kids, posing for pictures and signing shirts.
A great time was had by all, a big thank you to the children involved and the parents who got up early on Saturday morning to stand in the freezing cold rain.
The advertisements should be shown later this year on the national tv channels.
This year's Track and Field Awards Presentation Evening was held on 19 November at Roundwood in Taverham and recognised the performances from our athletes during an excellent season. Trophies were presented to mark outstanding achievement and commitment / endeavour for the club.
Please click here to view the full list of winners. The overall cups went to:
Laura McDonald - 2nd ESAA Champs, 2nd Schools International, County Record, UK Ranking 2 and 4th on the UK all-time list in the U17 Javelin with 47.52m.
Junior Men - joint winners
Callum Brown - 2nd ESAA Champs, 1st Schools International, County Record, UK Ranking 1 and 18th on the UK all-time list in the U17 Hammer with 66.18m;
Aaron Pitt - 1st ESAA Champs, 1st AAA Champs, County Record, UK Ranking 2 and 8th on the UK all-time list in the U15 400m with 49.99s plus 3 other Grade 1's; and
Oliver Bradfield - 1st ESAA Champs, 1st AAA Champs, County Record. UK Ranking 1 and 1st on the UK all-time list in the U15 Javelin with 65.87m + 12th UK Ranking in LJ.
Barbara Parker - European Champs selection - UK Ranking 2 in the steeplechase with 9.35.17s; World Indoors selection in the 3,000m.
James McLachlan - 1st ESAA, 1st Scottish U20, 1st Flanders International with a LJ best of 7.47m.
Congratulations to all our athletes and here's to another exciting season in 2011.
Our ladies track and field team just missed out on promotion from the Southern Women's League Division 3 after the final fixture was held at Watford. The team finished in fourth place in the league, a great achievement when you consider that this was the first time the team had competed for a number of years.
In the final match we had eleven ladies competing and all eleven recorded an event win as well as taking part in at least one other event at some point during the afternoon. Laura Green's long jump at 5.40m was the qualification distance for next year's English Schools, Carole Filer won the pole vault, Julie Zulu the shot and Iona Lake & Holly Cooper recorded a hard fought 1-2 in the 800m. Dani Nimmock 3000m, Natassaja Potgieter and Juliet Broster 1500m, Caitlin Bell 400m, Sophie Poyner triple jump and Jenna Cannell hammer concluded the event wins.
A big thank you to Holly Cooper and Sophie Poyner who competed in every fixture and covered more than forty events between them across the season. Many thanks also to David Pring and Steve Thomas who travelled to the match to officiate.
The team should be able to now build on this initial season and push for a promotion spot in 2011.
Our wheelchair racer Will Smith produced four silver medal efforts at the IWAS World Junior Games held in Olomouc in the Czech Republic.
Racing in the under 16 T54 wheelchair events in temperatures which on some days approached 35 degrees, Will delivered some excellent performances and was always in contention for the gold.
He returned 17.92secs for 100m, 31.14secs for 200m, a personal best 57.74secs in the 400m and 2mins 0.07secs for 800m. On each occasion, however, Will had to conceed the gold medal to the remarkable German David Scherer who prevailed in all four of Will's events.
Will is 14 years old and was born with spina bifida. He is now coached by Jenny Archer who numbers multi-Olympic and World Champion David Weir amongst her charges. Will uses a hand-made Draft racing wheelchair provided by the Get Kids Going charity.
This weekend as young CoNAC-ers competed at the national U17 & U15 championships in Bedford, the public address announcer broke the news that Sophie McKinna the charismatic young shot putter from Bradwell had taken 5th place in the Singapore Youth Olympics with a throw of 15.14m - not only a new personal best, but also a new British age group record.
Sophie competes as a higher-claim athlete for CoNAC and will join fellow club members Clieo Stephenson, Laura McDonald, Kimberly Aspland and Michael Painter all representing Team Birmingham at next week's UK School Games in Gateshead.
This past weekend the England Athletics U17 & U15 outdoor championships were held at Bedford International stadium and the very best young athletes from across the country came together to compete in one of the last major events of the season.
With no less than three National titles eventually coming home to Norfolk, as well as two championship best performances both on track and in the field, the quality of CoNAC athletes and the standard of coaching they receive at Norwich was once again evident on a national stage.
The event which is held over two days was blessed with remarkably good weather; at times it even seemed that the stadium was an oasis amongst the black rain clouds with circled around Bedford. Thankfully the weather held off and this helped deliver some excellent performances including a titanic battle in the U15 boy’s javelin.
Oliver Bradfield started strongly with 62.33m in the first round only for Thomas Peters from Sheffield AC to snatch the lead in round two with a throw of 64.74m. Bradfield - the current UK U15 record holder - then hit back in the fourth round with his third longest throw ever of 65.26m to regain the initiative and despite two futher 60m + efforts from Peters in the closing rounds the gold medal was Oliver's along with a new championship record. This was one of the most exciting javelin contests this season, and a credit to both athletes.
Another athlete to make his mark this weekend was Aaron Pitt who ran 50.42secs, the fastest qualifier in the U15B 400m sprint semi on Saturday. He then stole the show with an amazing 49.99secs in the final on Sunday. Taking the lead at the end of the back straight, Pitt moved three metres clear of the field as he rounded the turn and maintained this distance over Dereece Callaghan on the final straight, finishing nearly a second ahead of the opposition, taking the championship record along with the gold medal for the event.
The third national title was secured by Laura McDonald in the U17W javelin. Despite her event being delayed by more than forty-five minutes due to an overrun in the hammer competition at the opposite end of the field, McDonald still summoned enough adrenalin to take the national title with her first throw of 45.52m, eventually finishing around 5m clear of her nearest rival to take the gold medal and CoNAC’s third in the championship.
Other noticeable performances came from Callum Brown in the U17M hammer. Callum managed 60.43m in round 6 of the competition to win the bronze medal. Michael Painter also competing in the same event managed 52.44m to finish 12th overall. Michael also threw 42.86m in the discus on the Saturday finishing in 10th place.
Scott Greeves had a good run in the U15B 800m heats but, despite a huge personal effort on the final bend, was unable to make the final with 2mins 07.54secs.
Sprinter Clieo Stephenson ran 12.4secs on Saturday in the U17W 100m but missed out in the final later in the day. On Sunday Clieo competed in the 200m heats but, despite returning a brilliant 25.68secs against stiff competition, didn’t finish in the medals. Finally Gemma Vickery competing in the U15G hammer managed 32.32m to add to the brilliant set of results achieved by the proud CoNAC athletes.
The only slight disappointment was the overall reduction in the number of CoNAC athletes competing at this prestigious event compared with last year. But it's quality not quantity that counts and we certainly have bags of that!
Victoria Mitchell was thrilled to be part of the Welsh U18 4 x 100m relay team at the Celtic Games in Athlone, Ireland on Saturday.
Following a two-day squad session in Cardiff under the watchful eye of national coach David Lease (who can count Jason Gardner and Darren Campbell amongst his successes in the past) Victoria was delighted to be chosen in the U18 relay team at the age of just 15 and didn't disappoint.
The relay went well, in the words of a proud and emotional Dad, with Victoria running a storming 3rd leg to help bring the baton home in the gold medal position in 47.56secs.
The Celtic Games is held annually with juvenile teams competing from Scotland, Wales, Ulster and Ireland. For many athletes this is an important stepping stone to international athletics. Athletes such as Derval O’Rourke (Leevale AC) and Christian Malcolm (Wales) still hold Celtic Games records.
Three of CoNAc-ers brightest young stars took part in the prestigious McCain Throws Fest at Hendon on Saturday and all can be well pleased with their efforts.
Laura McDonald had an excellent series in the U17 girls javelin, culminating in a final throw of 47.52m which improved her own lifetime best by nearly 3m and also set a new County U17 record.
Callum Brown also impressed in the U17 boys hammer with two tremendous throws; 63.78m on his first attempt and then an excellent 65.02m on his fourth visit to the circle to set a new Norfolk U17 record and also a lifetime best.
Not to be outdone, Michael Painter hit 12.10m in the shot on Saturday and followed that with a 45.88m throw in the discus on Sunday. Well done all three of you!
Some of the most competitive track & field athletics ever seen at the Sportspark brought the curtain down on this season's Southern Premier Division of the National Junior Athletics League as CoNAC grabbed 4th place on the day to end the season in a very satisfying 5th place overall.
At stake was the security of not having to take part in the play-off match, thus ensuring our continued participation in the highest ranking U20 athletics league in the South of England, if not the U.K. With so many promising up and coming U17s, some already earning their first national vests this year, it was paramount that all the stops were pulled out right across the club.
Warm weather, a welcoming family atmosphere and large crowds seated around the embankments which form a natural amphitheatre at the Sportspark all helped galvanize CoNAC’s U20’s performances to new heights, as they battled (and held their own) with some of the best runners, longest jumpers and furthest throwers in the UK.
Some blistering displays from local athletes were achieved from the outset in all events and of particular note was the performance of James McLachlan who in the first field event of the day returned a fantastic 7.27m in the long jump to take a very close 2nd place. Adam Howard, jumping 6.21m in the ‘B’ string of the same event, later jumped 1.75m in the high jump, securing 3rd place.
Adam’s brother Ryan produced a brilliant 14.46m in the triple jump, just missing out on the 1st place slot by a mere 1cm. James McLachlan, not content with his long jump performance, later ran 11.2 seconds in the 100m sprint to win the ‘A’ string in the event.
James Senior ran in the 2,000m steeplechase, showing a clean pair of heels to a strong challenge on the penultimate lap at the water jump; James responded easily by quickening his pace to recover the lead by a good margin, ultimately winning the race in 6:07.3.
Jordan Ali won the 3,000m ‘A’ string in 9:05.6 with team mate James Jackson leading the ‘B’ in 9:33.4. Harry Newenham threw 48.71m in the javelin to take 3rd position and Ed Skinner threw 48.23m in the ‘B’ to take 2nd place in that string. A special mention also to Ed, for a new p.b achieved in the pole vault at a height of 3.95m.
In the ladies events, a number of performances stood out; not least that of Iona Lake and Hazel Wilson who competed in the first ladies 1,500m steeplechase ever to held at the Sportspark. With anxious parents watching from the sidelines, it was not with a little trepidation that the girls approached the water jumps. With the new adjustable barriers in place, it was left to Iona to show the crowd just how deep the water jump really was as she landed in the ‘deep end’ and virtually disappeared from view! Thankfully, resurfacing with a beaming smile on her somewhat wet face, Iona’s spirit remained undampened as she pushed on with her challenge to finish in 3rd place in the ‘A’ string. A ‘big well done’ also to Hazel, albeit finishing slightly drier than Iona, she took a very credible 3rd place in the ‘B’ string. If this wasn’t enough Iona had also won the 800m earlier in the day in 2:12.4 and went on to treat the crowd to a thrilling final lap in the 4x400m relay when she battled with Enfield and Haringey during the final 20m to secure 5th place in the event for CoNAC.
Jenna Cannell in the Hammer secured second place in that event with a terrific throw of 44.81m. Kiera Mooney also found good form also to take 3rd place in the ‘A’ string of the 400m in 59.5s and Caitlin Bell the same result in the ‘B’ with 62.3s. Clieo Stephenson secured 3rd in the 100m sprint in 12.5s and replicated that performance later in the 200m when she finished in 25.3s.
Finally Laura McDonald, who competed in her first international only last week, threw her best ever series of javelin throws culminating in a massive 44.80m, enough to earn the title of Female Athlete of the Match.
Here are the final scores: 1 - Shaftesbury Barnet 503pts; 2 - Enfield & Haringey 499.5pts; 3 Blackheath & Bromley 497pts; 4 - City of Norwich 459.5pts; 5 - Windsor, Slough, Eton & Hounslow 422pts; 6 - The Saxons 382.5pts; 7 - Woodford Green with Essex Ladies 302; 8 - Harrow 249.5pts.
Congratulations to team managers Lorraine Brown and Jacky Green on a job very well done; and to all officials, timekeepers and volunteers for their help and support throughout the day to ensure that we ended the season in such style. Please click here to view the full results from a super day of athletics.
Callum Brown, Laura McDonald and Sophie McKinna represented England in the Home Counties International Championships at Scotstoun Stadium in Glasgow earlier today. All were selected to represent their country following success at the English Schools championships the previous weekeend. In contrast to the very warm weather which the athlete’s enjoyed at Alexander Stadium last Saturday, low temperatures, high winds and rain all conspired to test the resilience of our young stars.
Wearing an England vest for the first time, Callum from North Walsham High School lead the hammer from the outset with a fantastic series of throws. With a best of 62.83m in round two, Callum ultimately ensured the competition was his, when his nearest rival’s final throw ended with the hammer burying itself into the netting on the hammer cage.
Laura McDonald from Wymondham High School was also making her first International appearance throwing the javelin from the northern end of the stadium. Hampered by strong winds and temperatures that made keeping warm between throws virtually impossible, Laura still managed a strong series of throws to ensure that 42.16m would ensure she would receive the silver medal.
Last to compete of the three Norfolk representatives was Great Yarmouth’s Sophie McKinna who goes to Lynn Grove High. Sophie who threw a colossal 15.08m in the shot at the previous weeks English School championships and with Great Britain representation at the Singapore Youth Olympics only a few weeks away, a fine performance was virtually guaranteed.
This charismatic young thrower and protégée of coach Geoff Capes always draws support as she competes, from both the spectators and fellow athletes alike. Sophie led the competition from her first putt with her best throw of 14.81m breaking the championship record, her last throw only just missing out on being even further, as she slipped in the throwing circle.
Sophie took a well-deserved gold in the event and captured the crowd’s admiration for another terrific performance. A much bigger audience will get a chance to follows Sophie’s progress in August, when the BBC are due to broadcast rolling highlights from Singapore on the BBC red button which will be updated twice daily at 8am and 3pm, as well as updates on the ‘Newsround’ programme.
Norfolk's run of success in the English Schools Track and Field Championships continued in spectacular style over the weekend. The Alexander Stadium in Birmingham was the scene for four individual victories and two new championship records.
Records for Norfolk athletes in these championships are very rare, so to get two in one year is completely without precedent. Perhaps the top performance came from Sophie McKinna in the intermediate (under-17) girls' shot. She was already the favourite for the event but her distance thrown was a massive 15.08m, an improvement on the old championship record by more than 60cm. It was also a new UK age group record - and destroying all opposition. The Lynn Grove HS pupil will compete for England this weekend in the schools international match in Glasgow; and next month she will compete for Great Britain in the World Youth games in Singapore.
The other athlete to set a new record was Oliver Bradfield of Gresham's. He was also a strong favourite to win, this time in the junior boys' (under-15) javelin. His throw of 61.28m was enough to win by several metres.
The run of victories continued in the junior boys' 400m, where Aaron Pitt (Hamonds HS) won in a fairly close finish, with a fine time of 50.78 seconds. It surely won't be long before this very talented athlete breaks the 50-second barrier. The fourth Norfolk victory came in the senior boys' long jump where James McLachlan (Wymondham HS) led from round one and finished with an outstanding distance of 7.39m. He will continue his studies in America next year.
Two other excellent performances came in the throws. Laura McDonald (Wymondham HS) had to be content with second place to the outstanding Freya Jone of Hampshire. Laura's throw of 44.88m in the intermediate girls' javelin was not surprisingly another Norfolk record. Another second place came from Callum Brown (North Walsham HS) with a fine hammer throw of 62m. Both Laura and Callum will also compete for England in Glasgow next week.
There were other good performances in Birmingham too. Clieo finished seventh in the intermediate girls 100m in 12.48, and John Phoenix with little real experience did very well to finish fifth in the junior boys' triple jump with 12.39m. Michael Painter threw the boys' discus out to 47m to finish sixth. Another newcomer, Ed Wilson, did very well to finish sixth in the junior boys' discus with a distance of 36.71m and Jenna Cannell, not quite at her best, finished fifth in the senior girls' hammer with a distance of 45.47m. And James Senior, in his final championships stumbled but still managed to finish seventh in the senior boys' 2,000m steeplechase.
Norfolk won the minor counties junior boys' trophy and finished close to Somerset in the overall minor counties competition.
Tim Newenham the club’s Javelin Coach has been awarded the title of “Coach of the Year” by Norwich City Council, at their annual Sports Awards ceremony held at the City Hall recently.
The javelin squad he has nurtured at the club since 2007 has proved to be so successful that it now recognised as a centre of excellence within the athletic community. Throughout the year his squad can be seen training at the Sportspark under Tim’s expert guidance. This weekend will see Oliver Bradfield, Laura McDonald and Stephanie Burt three of his talented squad competing for medals in the English Schools Track & Field Championships being staged at the Alexander Stadium in Birmingham.
Our congratulations go to Tim on his award and we wish his three charges all the very best at the English Schools Track & Field Championships.
Club international athlete Barbara Parker ran a barnstorming 3000m Steeplechase from the front at the European Trials and UK Track & Field Championships held over the weekend in Birmingham. On what proved to be the hottest day of the year she produced a winning time of 9min 37.77secs, which was just short of her personal best. One certain outcome of her performance is that she has now booked her seat on the plane for the forthcoming European championships that are to be held in Barcelona at the end of July. Please click here to view some pics.
Five other CoNAC-ers were cutting their “senior” national championship teeth at the same venue. Hollie Rowland displayed a return to better form when knocking a healthy nine seconds of her best 5000m time. Finishing in a pleasing 8th place she posted a time of 16min 34.58secs.
Ashley Harrell despite recording 9min 09.92sec in the 3000m Steeplechase expressed disappointment with his performance. His time although a little adrift of his personal best was nevertheless creditable, taking into account the extremely hot conditions. For James Senior the championships proved to be a baptism of fire but he stuck to the task in hand when recording 1min 54.74secs in his heat of the 800m. Paul Goodall having just recovered from a hamstring pull found the pace in his heat that little too fast and had to settle for a time of 1min 52.68secs. Sadly for Mitch Goose, competing in the 5000m, he had to pull out mid-race feeling decidedly unwell.
The sun shone brightly on matchday 3 of this year's National Junior Athletic League at Woodford today but the CoNAC juniors shone even brighter. At the end of the match a number of PB's had been registered, two club records had been broken and the team had all but ensured competition in this league again next year.
We only had one event winner, Steph Burt in the A Javelin with 34.87, but the numerous 'for the team' points totted up to ensure the team finished 6th again for the third time this year. With 9 league points and a home match to come, we are almost guaranteed Premier League competition next year. Everyone deserves a mention so here goes ...............
Jon Brown - 100m 11.39, 200m 22.62 pb, Shot 7.84
Ryan Howard - 100m 13.94, TJ 11.24
Martainn Ramsey - 200m 26.31, 800m 2.04.99, Javelin 16.22
Chris Marshall - 400m 58.92, 110mH 16.72, 400mH 60.51, Shot 5.39
James Senior - 400m 59.31, 800m 1.57.45, 110mH 18.74, Hammer 19.21
Tom Hook - 1500m 4.14.55 pb, HJ 1.60
Ben Stratton - 1500m 4.21.20, 400mH 64.83, Hammer 18.92
Jordon Ali - 3000m 9.04.83
John Fulton - 3000m 9.34.98
Ed Skinner - Discus 33.28, LJ 6.17 pb, Javelin 49.82, PV 3.65
Adam Howard - Discus 10.75, HJ 1.65, TJ 12.09, LJ 6.11
Clieo Stephenson - 100m 12.41
Vicky Mitchell - 100m 12.66, 200m 26.00
Caitlin Bell - 200m 27.95, 400m 65.44
Kiera Mooney - 400m 59.13 pb
Iona Lake - 800m 2.12.59 pb
Hazel Wilson - 800m 2.44.62 1500mSC 6.48.53
Juliet Broster - 1500m 5.16.11 Hammer 5.24
Esme Salmon - 1500m 5.35.02, 3000m 11.26.42
Grace Bird - 3000m 12.01.24
Jenny Milligan - 100mH 17.79 pb, LJ 4.46
Laura Green - 400mH 67.94
Anna Spratt - 400mH 72.55, TJ 9.31
Jenna Cannell - Discus 28.43, Javelin 27.82, Hammer 46.32 pb and Club record, Shot 7.25
Steph Burt - Discus 18.16, Javelin 34.87, Shot 8.44
Sophie Poyner - LJ 4.31, TJ 9.64
4x100m relay - Vicky Mitchell, Sophie Poyner, Laura Green, Clieo Stephenson 49.93 club record
The final match of the season is at home on the 25th July - this should be a very special day indeed, with a full strength squad it will be very interesting to see how we perform against the big London clubs.
Special mention needs to go to the travelling officials. David Pring, Graham Mitchell, Annie Mooney and Dave Willis did a superb job in blazing hot conditions. Jacqui Green as joint team manager must have covered more miles than many of the athletes and must be congratulated for her efforts in encouraging the excellent performances on the day. All in all a great CoNAC team performance.
Our senior men’s team travelled to Lee Valley in North London for their fourth Southern Men’s League fixture and got themselves back on track when taking second place against a strong Reading AC team.
It was good to have hammer thrower Sam Coe back competing for the club and he certainly proved his worth with an emphatic win when posting an effort of 62.55m. Ed Skinner was another successful field event athlete, taking first place in the “A” Javelin with a throw of 49.75m.
The endurance squad had a busy and successful day with wins from Stuart Huntington (4min 07.7secs) and Rick Ward (4min 14.8secs) in the “A” and “B” 1500m. Nick Earl (15min 59secs) and Wayne Utting (16min 31.3secs) contested the 5,000m and added to the points total with victories in the “A” and “B” races.
Paul Goodall dipped under the 50 second barrier when winning the “A” 400m in 49.1secs while Rick Ward made it a double when winning the “B” race in 50.6sec.
The final team scores were 1 - Reading AC 138pts; 2 - City of Norwich AC 119.5; 3 - Enfield and Haringey AC 117pts; 4 - Ilford AC 80.5pts; 5 - Portsmouth AC 79pts.
Matchday 3 looks like being the turning point of the season for our senior ladies track team who this year have returned to action in the Southern Women's League.
After two fixtures they languished in 14th place; now after today's home match they have moved up to 8th place and within striking distance of the promotion places. A great team performance with some excellent filling the places enabled the team to accrue 116 points ahead of Ryston Runners 78, West Norfolk AC 66, Watford AC 62 and Highgate Harriers 41.
Today's team members and results were:
Lisa Griffin - 100m B 2nd 14.7, 200m B 2nd 30.8, Shot A 1st 6.60
Megan Thomas - Shot A 1st 9.53 pb, Hammer A 1st 37.20, Discus A 1st 28.39
Becky Pike - Discus B 5th 9.99, HJ B 2nd 1.40, 400H A 1st 68.6, 100H A 1st 18.1
Carol Filer - PV A 2nd 1.55, 100H B 1st 20.2, 400H B 2nd 83.2, HJ A 2nd 1.40, Hammer B 3rd 16.92
Holly Cooper - 400 A 1st 63.0, 800 A 1st 2.20.0, Javelin B 2nd 14.44
Sophie Mullen - LJ B 2nd 4.20, TJ B 1st 9.21, 1500 A 1st 5.13.6
Miriam Arbach - 800 B 1st 2.28.9, 400 B 1st 66.0, 200 B 1st 27.9
Sophie Poyner - 100 A 1st 13.6,LJ A 1st 4.72, TJ A 2nd 9.57
Gillian Loughlin - 1500 B 3rd 6.09.4
Tessa Pike - 3000 B 1st 11.50.3
Dani Nimmock - 3000 A 1st 10.15.7
Laura McDonald - Javelin A 1st 41.66
Relays - 1st in both
After three matches the league table is as follows:
1 - Exeter Harriers 278 match pts, 10 league pts
2 - Thurrock Harriers 277 (11)
3 - Woking AC 253.5 (9)
4 - Vale of Aylesbury AC 221 (8)
5 - Andover AC 216 (9)
6 - West Norfolk AC 216 (8)
7 - Brighton & Hove AC 215.5 (10)
8 - City of Norwich AC 210 (7)
9 - Croydon Harriers 209 (9)
10 - Watford Harriers 208 (6)
11 - Bracknell AC 199 (7)
12 - Hillingdon AC 199 (6)
13 - Ryston Runners 196 (6)
14 - Highgate Harriers 153 (5)
15 - London Heathside 141 (4)
16 - Dorking & Mole Valley AC 122 (4)
17 - Orion Harriers 121 (4)
18 - City of Plymouth AC 72 (2)
19 - Southend on Sea AC 19 (1)
We now look forward to the next match on 7 August at Parliament Hills where another strong performance should see the team just outside the promotion places. With the final match on 4 September at Woodside, it should be an exciting end to the season.
Many thanks to all officials who helped on the day.
The team selected to represent Norfolk at the English Schools Track & Field Championships in Birmingham on 9 & 10 July is:
Elsa Buck JG shot; Stephanie Griffin JG shot; Lily Evans JG discus; Ella Stephenson JG 100m; Oliver Bradfield JB javelin; Aaron Pitt JB 400m; Scott Greeves JB 1500m; Ed Wilson JB discus; John Phoenix JB triple jump; G Sankoh JB 100m; Laura McDonald IG javelin; Clieo Stephenson IG 100m; Victoria Mitchell IG 100m; Sophie McKinna IG shot; Megan Thomas IG hammer; Freya Le Serve IG javelin; Michael Painter IB discus; Callum Brown IB hammer; Danny Clayton IB shot; Richard Taylor IB 100m; Jenna Cannell SG hammer; Stephanie Burt SG javelin; Iona Lake SG 1500m; James Senior SB 2000m steeplechase; James McLachlan SB long jump.
Once again CoNAC provides the vast majority of the Norfolk team. With a number of junior club members qualifying for what is possibly their first ever major national championship, this really will be a special moment to savour for these young athletes.
For those that can't make the meeting, the Saturday afternoon finals are to be televised live on Sky Sports and you can visit www.esaa.net for further details. Our congratulations go to everyone who has qualified to compete for your county and we will all keep our fingers crossed for you on your big day.
It was a very windy Bedford International Stadium that hosted the England Athletics Aviva Under23 and Under 20 Track & Field Championships over the weekend in which a contingent of the club’s athletes tested themselves against England’s best younger generation athletes.
Rick Ward competing in the Under 23 800m, after comfortably negotiating his heat was confident about his chances in the final. As is often the case these days it proved to be a tactical affair with the competitors relying on their kick over the latter part of the race. On this occasion, Ward renowned for his fast finish didn’t quite cover the break for home and had to be content with securing bronze in a time of 1min 53.00secs. Tommy Carroll, a surprise finalist, was placed 7th in a time of 1min 53.7secs.
Under 23 competitor Rachel Stringer in only her second 800m race of the season displayed an improving competitive edge and was therefore pleased to secure a bronze medal in a modest time, by her standards, of 2min 09.29secs. Hollie Rowland contested the Under 23 5000m and found it to be a tough call but as always stuck to her task to finish in a creditable 4th place in 17min 16.74secs.
Ashley Harrell tackled the Under 23 3000m Steeplechase in which he was less than satisfied to finish in 6th position in a time of 9min 22.47secs. James Senior took on the Under 20 3000m Steeplechase but sadly came to grief when placed third with a spectacular fall at the water jump that forced his withdrawal from the race.
Mitch Goose cruised through his heat in the Under 23 1500m in a time of 3min 50.92secs but was very disappointed with his below performance in the final. With a best of 44.96m to her credit Under 20 javelin thrower Stephanie Burt was another to feel the pangs of disappointment when she was eliminated from the competition after three throws.
This coming weekend the UKA European Track & Field Trials take place at the Alexandra Stadium Birmingham. For a number of the club’s athletes it will be a further test of their ability to compete at the highest level with Barbara Parker wanting to confirm her place in the Great Britain team for the European Championships over the 3000m Steeplechase.
No sooner had USA-based Barbara Parker landed on home turf last week than she found herself packing her bag to fly off to Bergen, Norway to compete for Great Britain in the European Team Championships.
Barbara competed in the 3,000m steeplechase where she currently tops the UK ranking list. Barbara, the former British record holder and a little travel weary, was pleased to record 9min 44.81sec, a time within eight seconds of her personal best.
Afterwards she said "The hurdles were scrappy and I struggle with confidence in a busy race, but I came off the final water jump just thinking "team points" and that spurred me on”. Barbara was predicated to finish no lower than seventh so was delighted to cross the line, following a barnstorming home straight effort, in a high fourth place.
Barbara's next challenge is the Euro trials this weekend in Birmingham and then she turns her attention to the Diamond League in Lausanne on 8 July and the Lord Mayor's 5k City Centre Classic on 10 July.
Currently based in the USA, Barbara Parker opened her season’s account in her favoured event, the 3000m Steeplechase with a resounding win. Her solo effort in the Jim Bush Invitational Meet in California was rewarded with a fast time of 9min 38.23secs that her places firmly on top of the UK rankings.
Barbara travels back across the "pond" on 15 June to compete for Great Britain in the European Cup in Norway, followed by the trials for the European Track & Field Championships that will be held in Birmingham.
Our Senior Men's team trekked down to Worthing on Saturday to contest the third of six Southern Men’s League fixtures. Little if anything was gained from the trip as the team finished a disappointing last although, it must be said, those who attended gave of their all in the cause for points. So much so that two of our “old timers” Gordon Slater and Denis Costello were required to double up in the Hammer and Discus.
James McLachlen, winner of the “A” Long Jump produced a superb effort of 7.39m, giving him a massive new personal best and the added bonus of placing him on top of the UK Under 20 rankings. Rick Ward was the only other individual winner on the day when taking the “A” 400m in fine style in a time of 49.9secs giving him the satisfaction of dipping under the 50sec barrier for the first time. In the final event the 4 x 400m Relay team had the consolation of recording the club’s third win of the day before heading for home.
Final scores: 1 - Worthing AC 141pts; 2 - Tonbridge AC 130pts; 3 - North Devon AC 118pts; 4 - City of Norwich AC 107pts.
Thankfully the final three fixtures are a little nearer to home, Lee Valley, Bexley and Peterborough, so it is very possible for the team to climb above their current mid-table position in the league.
Events in Ashford and Manchester required the club’s athletes to travel far and wide over the past weekend. The South of England Under15 & Under 17 Track & Field Championships were staged in Ashford, Kent and it was Oliver Bradfield who topped the achievement table when taking gold in the Under 15 Boys Javelin. His prodigious throw of 60.73m created a new championship record. Callum Brown was another to hit the gold standard when winning the Under 17 Boys Hammer with a mighty effort of 64.44m. Both of these young men, for sure, can now look forward to further successes during the course of the summer season.
Clieo Stephenson’s time of 25.65secs in the Under 17 Girls 200m final secured her the silver medal while Laura McDonald mirrored that position in the Under 17 Girls Javelin with a throw of 42.63m. Michael Painter’s 43.33m effort in the Under 17 Boys Discus was good enough to gain him the bronze medal. However he had to settle for a creditable 5th place in the Shot with a putt of 12.70m. Scott Greeves was another to display improving form with a 5th place finish in the final of the Under 15 Boys 1500m when recording 4min 21.6secs.
Sports City Manchester hosted the British Milers Club meeting on saturday evening and proved to be a successful trip for three of the club’s endurance athletes. Competing in the 5,000m, Mitch Goose produced a super time of 14mins 02.44secs - a personal best by almost 16 seconds. His aim was to break the 14-minute barrier for the event but a lapse of concentration during the penultimate lap cost him his goal and the opportunity to eclipse the club record currently held by Guy Amos. Also competing over 5,000m Ashley Harrell felt he should have done better but still managed to knock a sizable chunk of his previous best when recording 14min 38.74secs. Iona Lake managed to tweak her best 1500m time down to 4min 37.16secs and now sees this as her best option in July’s English Schools Track & Field Championships.
A very small team travelled to Croydon today to wave the CoNAC flag in match two of the Southern Women's League. The three athletes who went along all proved they had the 'right stuff' and did the club proud.
Holly Cooper came away with victories in the 800m and 400m and secured points in the javelin and discus with pb's. Gillian Loughlin bagged a number of seconds in the 3000m, B 800m, B shot, B Javelin and completed the day with the discus. Sophie Poyner recorded a victory in the long jump before joining Donna Fraser on the start of the 100m finishing second. A second in the 200m followed and the day was completed with a very competitive third in the TJ and third in the shot.
Rick Ward and Keith Povey must be thanked for officiating for the club on a very hot day in south London.
Needless to say with such small numbers the team ended the day in last place and after two matches CoNAC now finds itself in the unusual position of propping up the rest of the table.
The next match is on 26 June at the Sportspark when we take on, amongst others, local clubs Ryston and West Norfolk - let's hope that we can get more interest from prospective team members so that we can put on a winning performance and start to move up the table. Please contact Clive Poyner or call 07809 835019 to register your interest.
Now that the summer has arrived the Wednesday evening meetings staged by the British Milers Club at Woodside Stadium, Watford are proving to be a popular draw for the club’s endurance athletes. If you want to achieve a new personal best time then Woodside Stadium is the place to visit as the trackside conditions are - more often that not - ideal for fast times.
Young Scott Greeves was one to benefit significantly from the experience when competing over 800m. Toeing the start line with a personal best of 2min 16.8secs he finished his two-lap stint in a time of 2min 07.49secs. As they say in football “he was over the moon” but at the same a little disappointed as he had just missed out on achieving the English Schools qualifying time of 2min 07secs. For sure, his time will come.
Ben Stratton was another to benefit from the Watford experience. Competing over 3000m he made great strides towards breaking the 9minute barrier for this event when recording 9min 07.34ses, knocking almost 20seconds off his previous best time.
Experienced campaigner Mitch Goose doubled up in the 1500m and the 3000m. With a top flight 5000m race on the horizon he wanted to test his level of fitness. It proved to be a worthwhile course of action when he posted a time of 3min 46sec for the 1500m a time just shy of his personal best and then went on to record 8min 19.27secs for the 3000m a time that shaved ½ a second of his previous best. Ashley Harrell also contested the 1500m and was pleased to knock almost 4 seconds of his previous best when producing a time of 3min 52.79secs. 800m specialist Rick Ward took the decision to built on his stamina base when taking part in the 3000m. He recorded a respectable 8min 50.44secs but post race vowed not to tackle the event ever again!
Please click here to view the league tables after Round One of this year's East Anglian League which took place today at Chelmsford. We currently sit in eighth place overall with plenty to do in the remaining rounds.
Competing in the second of six Southern Men’s Track & Field League fixtures today our senior team made amends for a disappointing result in the opening round with a comfortable win on home turf at the Sportspark.
In the field events James McLachlen mopped up the points in the both the “A” Long Jump and Triple Jump when clearing 6.90m and 14.13m respectively. To his great disappointment in the Long Jump a breakthrough 7.10m jump was adjudged to be a no-jump. Two of the club’s up and coming youngsters took centre stage in the Hammer and Javelin. Callum Brown with a fine effort of 48.27m took the victors laurels in the “A” contest while in the “A” Javelin Harry Newenham proved to be the leader of the pack with a winning effort of 49.30m. Ed Skinner was another youngster to make his mark with a winning effort of 48.05m in the “B” Javelin, this after a 3.80m clearance in the “A” Pole Vault that secured him second place.
In the combined 3000m Steeplechase Nick Earl and Steven Cannell teamed up well to leave the rest of field trailing. Earl was delighted to produce a new personal best 9min 37.0secs for victory in the “A” race while Cannell had to be content with 9min 43.0secs that secured him a very comfortable win in the “B” race. The 800m races proved to be fruitful for the team with Tommy Carroll stamping his authority from the start to win the “A” race in 1min 55.3secs. Tom Love played the waiting game in the “B” event moving away in the final straight to take maximum points in a time of 2min 00.3secs.
Rick Ward, James Senior, Tom Love and Tommy Carroll teamed up for the final event of the day the 4 x 400m Relay and the after a exciting battle had to settle for the runners-up spot behind a strong Newbury quartet.
The final points score was 1 - City of Norwich AC 137pts; 2 - Luton AC 117.5pts; 3 - Newbury AC 106.5pts; 4th - Harrow AC 85.5pts; 5th - Newham & Essex Beagles AC 78.5pts.
We are pleased to announce that a dedicated sports scientist from Lucozade Sport will be working with us over the coming months to provide nutritional & hydration advice and support for all CoNAC members.
Intially, Chris McManus from Lucozade Sport will be holding three drop-in clinics at the Sportspark from 6.30pm to 9pm on the evenings of Tuesday 11, Wednesday 12 and Thursday 20 May - please click here to read more about this exciting development.
Great performances from the club’s athletes were in abundance at the weekend with Loughborough student Paul Goodall taking pride of place. Competing over 800m in the British Universities Track and Field Championships at a cold and very windy Bedford he produced the performance of his life. Goodall, a 47sec 400m athlete, made the decision to increase his endurance base over the past winter months and move up to the two-lap discipline. To the surprise of many he cruised through his heat and semi to take his place in the final. A pedantic first lap by a supposed experienced field played right into Goodall’s hands. Taking everyone by surprise he took off with 300m to go, worked his way quickly through the field and held on down the home straight to record a superb victory. Although his winning time was modest (1min 56.1secs) the manner of his victory was right out of the top drawer and bodes well for his future success as an 800m specialist.
At the same meeting club member Same Coe representing Imperial College London produced his best ever Hammer throw of 61.71m to take the bronze medal.
Stateside-ers Barbara Parker and Ruth Senior are producing some excellent results on the track and it is pleasing to note that both athletes currently head the UK ranking list for the 5000m. Over the weekend Parker when competing in Stanford recorded a personal best 15min 39.76secs while a week earlier Senior had produced a fast time 15min 57.82secs for a new personal best for the distance.
On the home front, while there were some excellent individual performances, the club’s senior men’s team struggled in their opening fixture of the Southern Men’s League when finishing a below par fourth. Winners were in short supply with James MacLachlen taking maximum points in the Long Jump with an effort of 6.78m. Tim Newenham’s son Harry looks to be following in his father’s footsteps when winning the Javelin with an impressive 51.71m while in the 3000m Steeplechase James Senior, looking to make his mark produced a winning time of 9min 42.3secs. The next fixture is on home ground in two weeks time when the team will look to produce an overall performance of which they are capable.
In what can only be described as appalling conditions our young athletes did themselves and the club proud today. The rain fell from the moment of arrival at 10.30am right through to 4.45pm with only the relays to run. The outfield resembled a cross country course by mid afternoon and the temperature didn’t get into double figures, not ideal conditions by far for a track and field meeting.
The whole team pulled together with magnificent spirit which was clearly indicated at the end of the day as we were the only club that managed to field a full complement of relay teams.
And when the final scores were announced we'd earned an excellent second place behind host club Blackheath and Bromley - please click here to view the full results.
There are several senior club members who made a massive contribution to the points total and helped the match to be put on. Our team of officials - David Pring (track), Mike Utting (timekeeping), Lorraine Brown, Lorraine Leggett, Graham Mitchell, David Stansbury and Jacqui Green (field) - all deserve a special mention as they were stuck out in the atrocious weather conditions all day.
We now look forward to the next match in a couple of weeks on 16 May and hopefully better conditions to compete in. The target for the team is the regional finals on 1 August when the top 8 clubs in the Southern Premier go head to head in what should be a match to remember - let's hope we can get there, with repeats of the spirit seen today I am sure we will.
CoNAC's women returned to senior track and field team competition at Watford on Saturday after an absence of several years. A team of nine, mostly U20’s, between them covered almost all the events with several "maxing out". All battled well throughout the day and really came together as a team. As they returned home a third place finish had been secured with some very encouraging performances in the bag.
Abi Martins recorded victory with a clearance of 2.50m in the B pole vault. She also added discus, high jump and a relay leg to complete her contribution to the team performance. Georgie Lake was everywhere. Starting with a second in the A pole vault of 2.60m, then hammer, followed by second in the B 100m with 14.4s, third in the javelin and concluding with a relay leg.
Caitlin Bell started with the hammer, then contended a hard fought 400m finishing with a time of 65.2s for fourth, produced an excellent second in the 200m in 27.9s and finished with a relay leg. Holly Cooper returned to competition with a flourish. Looking to drip below 2m20s for the 800m she just missed out with a time of 2m20.5 to claim third, a second followed in the 200m clocking 28.3s and to finish the day produced an excellent longer relay leg.
Hazel Wilson was trying something new. Known as a 3000m runner she produced an excellent first outing over 400m when recording 70.7s to take second position in the B event. The shot followed, Hazel then filled a gap in the 1500m before completing a relay leg. Recent recruit Gillian Loughlin produced two excellent performances in the 1500m and 3000m and anchored the 4 x 400m relay team.
Sasha Bernard recorded a second in the B long jump with 4.41m, threw the discus, triple jumped and ran the back straight relay leg. Sophie Poyner collected a bag of seconds in the A long jump with 4.56m, a triple jump of 9.72m and 100m in 13.7s. Shot and relay completed Sophie’s events for the day. Laura Green collected a second in the 400m hurdles in 69.9s and threw the Javelin 18.59m to record third place.
Many thanks go to Steve Thomas, our travelling official who led our ‘spectators’ judging team.
On the day the strength in numbers of the Exeter team was clearly demonstrated as they recorded 108 points to Working’s 68 and CoNAC third on 58, Southend and Orion completed result. The next match is on the 22nd May and clashes with the NJAL were most of these athletes will be competing. We will therefore need a team of ‘true’ seniors for the next match.
Please also book 26 June in your diaries when we host this league in Norwich. We are still searching for a team manager for this team - please contact email@example.com for more details.
The opening match in the Southern Premier Division of the National Junior Athletic League saw a tremendous CoNAC performance when finishing in sixth place at Barnet Copthall. Great team managing by Jacqui Green and Lorraine Brown enabled the athletes to amass a total of 368 points.
The ladies shone in particular and achieved an individual match score of 212 points to finish in fourth place, ahead of the mighty Woodford Green with Essex Ladies and Enfield & Haringey. The ‘field’ team raked in the points with superb contributions coming from Steff Burt, Sophie McKinna, Jenna Cannell and Laura McDonald. Please click here to view the full results.
Let's hope that the great team spirit witnessed at this match can carry forward into the next fixture on 23 May. We should be able to field another strong team as the mens team can draw on the ‘volcano’ squad and the distance squad now that the cross country season is at a close.
Oliver Bradfield set a new UK U15 javelin record at Lee Valley Park Stadium on Saturday with a massive throw of 65.60m, improving on the previous UK mark set in 2007 by almost two metres. He now holds the UK U13, Age 13 best and U15 records.
Under the guidance of England Athletics javelin coach mentor Tim Newenham, Oliver has made an excellent start to his 2010 season. He produced a personal best of 63.17m in his first outing at Chelmsford and now this throw of 65.60m places him over 7m clear of his nearest rival in the national rankings.
Afterwards, he said "I knew I was capable of achieving 65 metres as Tim had witnessed my throw at Chelmsford in challenging conditions and thought I could have thrown 65m there had the conditions been better. At Lee Valley I had a good opening throw of 62.75m and felt very comfortable and relaxed. As soon as I released the javelin on my second throw I knew it was going to be a big one and when 65.60m came up on the board I was just so pleased".
Following advice from UK Athletics, important new safety procedures are being introduced at the Sportspark's athletic track with immediate effect.
Accordingly, all track users - both coaches and athletes - are asked to read carefully and fully abide by our revised Track Etiquette policy. Click here to read it and please encourage others to do so as well. Thank you for your cooperation.
800m specialist Rachel Stringer is back on the golden trail! Competing over the past weekend in the British Universities Indoor Track & Field Championships that were held in Sheffield she took to the boards for Loughborough University and proved to be a comfortable winner.
Despite the ups and downs of coughs and colds she has wintered well and was out to make her mark at the championships. She cruised through the heat and semi-final into the final in which she was confident that she would produce a winning performance. This she duly did with aplomb. On the pace at the 400m mark reached at 66.4secs she then moved away from the chasing field to cross the line a comfortable winner in a time of 2min 10.98sec.
Rachel who has received funding from the Norfolk Sports and Cultural Foundation, which supports young talented athletes and artists on the road to London 2012, is now looking forward to the summer track season in confident mood.
Club mate Dani Nimmock who has been struggling with injury over many months made a return to competition in a slightly unusual way when she took part in the British Universities Biathlon Championship that was held in Oxford at the weekend. She is an excellent swimmer and even better runner so it seemed to be the ideal way to make a return to competition. The event included a 3km run followed by a 200m swim. At the end of her duel effort it was a delighted Dani who picked up a bronze medal and equally delighted that her injury problems appear to be behind her.
Barbara Parker's quest for glory in the 3,000m at the World Indoor Track & Field Champs in Doha, Qatar ended with fifth place in the slower of two heats on Friday afternoon. She ran 9mins 01.52secs, missing qualification for the final by just eleven hundreths of a second.
We're very proud of Barbara's latest achievement - another CoNAC-er in a GB vest at a major championship. Well done, Barbara!
This past weekend, athletes from this region attended the highlight of the 2010 indoor athletics calendar, namely the national age group championships in Birmingham. This year's event was possibly unparalleled by the number of Championship and National records that were broken during its two days. Eight CoNAC athletes competed at the National Indoor arena in disciplines ranging from sprints, jumps and throws. Please click here to view the photos.
Katie Vickery started proceedings on Saturday with the U15 Girls long jump, finishing in 6th place with a distance of 4.79m. Katie also managed a good run of 8.5s in the 60m sprint heats later in the day. Ellie Blunt in the same event ran a new pb of 8.13s with Ella Stephenson stopping the clock at 8.2s in the heats and also achieving a new pb in the semi-final with 8.13s.
In the U17 Women’s 60m Victoria Mitchell turned in a time of 8.5s with team mate Clieo Stephenson passing through the heats and semi-final, equalling her lifetime best of 7.88s in both, then taking fourth place in an extremely close final with 7.91s. Clieo just narrowly missing out on a Bronze medal after officials had to consult the photo-finish in what was a fantastic final.
The second day of the competition started with Clieo Stephenson competing in the U17 Women’s 200m semi-finals, which for those not familiar with indoor athletics is one complete lap of the banked indoor oval circuit. Clieo acquitted herself very well running 25.75s, this against the backdrop of running no less than three 60m races the previous day, but just missing out on the crucial qualifying time for the final.
At five past two, Aaron Pitt took to the track for the U15 Boys 400m heats. Aaron stormed the first lap at such a pace that at one time he had a 15m lead! Aaron eased off on the final 30m to take the heat easily in 53.94s.
Laura McDonald competing just after Aaron’s heat, in only her second U17 Triple jump competition, managed 11.17m with her first jump to take the Silver medal in the championships, and CoNAC’s first medal at this year’s event. Then Sophie McKinna, closely watched by her coach Geoff Capes and boosted by her success earlier this year at the Southern indoor championships, threw a colossal 13.24m in the U17 Women’s shot to take a well deserved gold medal. Sophie competes for Great Yarmouth and District AC with CoNAC as her higher claim club.
The last race of the day was the U15 Boys 400m final, Aaron Pitt the relative newcomer to athletics amazed the crowd with a fantastic sprint from the start. Finishing 2.58s ahead of his nearest rival, Aaron recorded an unbelievable 51.01s to take the gold. To put this in context, this was the second fastest time ever run in the UK for the U15 age group. Surely a UK best is within reach for this young lad this season?
What a fantastic finish to the competition which marks the imminent start of the new outdoor athletic season for City of Norwich AC.
Clieo Stephenson, Laura McDonald and Sophie McKinna receive support from the Norfolk Sports and Cultural Foundation and Clieo and Laura are also sponsored by the Norse Group.
A CoNAC club member has earned yet another international honour! Currently based in the States, Barbara Parker following her recent indoor performance over 3000m in which she recorded a personal best 8min 52.90secs has been selected to run for Great Britain over that distance in the World Indoor Track & Field Championships to be staged in Doha, Qatar in mid-March.
At the weekend she competed over two miles in the Aviva Indoor Grand Prix against the great Ethiopian Tirunesh Dibabu and Kenya’s Vivien Cheruiyot, which in anyone’s language is a tough call. On her own admission Barbara set off too steadily and was playing "catch up" all the time and had to be content with finishing in 6th place. However her time of 9min 35.83secs was a new personal best and her run did enough to confirm to the selectors that she is in very good shape and worthy of a place in the Great Britain team that will travel to Doha.
Barbara tells us that she hopes to be back in the UK during the summer months and hopes to make it down to the Sportspark for a few training sessions.
England Athletics has announced the performance coaching team who will work with the England Athletics Team for the 2010 Commonwealth Games in Delhi. Athletics will be one of 17 sports contested at this year's Games with competition from 6-12 October.
Team Leader John Brierley said: “We are delighted to confirm the performance coaching team to work with the England Athletics Team at the 2010 Commonwealth Games in Delhi. We are particularly pleased to announce Tim Newenham as the Lead Coach to support the Team in the lead up to and during The Games.
He added “We have been through a careful selection process involving England Athletics, UKA and Commonwealth Games England and are confident that we have a well balanced team of coaches capable of supporting and motivating the Team to medal success in Delhi.”
Lead coach Tim Newenham commented, “I'm honoured and proud to be Lead Athletics Coach for the England Team in Delhi. The Commonwealth Games provides a great opportunity for our top athletes to perform in such a significant international competition where we will be training and competing alongside 16 other sports, in what will be an amazing two week celebration of sport. These Games have seen some remarkable successes over the years and by helping to create to an environment that is professional and supportive out there, we can help our athletes perform at their very best and add to these historic achievements.”
Welcoming Tim's appointment, CoNAC chairman Clive Poyner said "This is marvellous news and we send Tim our hearty congratulations. His more recent coaching successess include CoNAC's own Laura McDonald and Oliver Bradfield both winning gold medals in the U15 javelin at last year's English Schools Championships. Tim's appointment as Lead Coach to the England team in Delhi is a well-deserved honour and we're very proud of his achievement. Well done Tim!"
Joining Newenham in Delhi will be an experienced team of coaches including Tony Hadley, Clarence Callender, Lloyd Cowan, Steve Rippon, Peter Stanley, Lorraine Shaw, George Gandy, Dave Sunderland, Martin Rush, Peter Eriksson and Christine Bowmaker.
Olympic athlete Barbara Parker, currently based in California, is making a name for herself on the USA indoor circuit. Competing in the Reebok Boston Indoor track meet last weekend she annihilated her previous best 3,000m indoor & outdoor time by a massive eight seconds. When finishing fourth, she produced a superb time of 8min 52.90secs which places her at the very top of the UK rankings for 2010.
Coached by husband Sean, Barbara is now planning to return to the UK to compete in the Aviva Grand Prix event on 20 February at the Birmingham Indoor Arena. She will be racing in the 2-mile event and hopes to impress the selectors who will be picking the Great Britain team to compete at the World Indoor Championships in Doha, Qatar in mid-March.
The weekend of 9 & 10 January was the start of the 2010 track and field athletics season for many club members in the region. They were competing in two SEAA Indoor Championships held on consecutive weekends at the Lee Valley stadium in east London.
Many well known competitors attended the Championships in order to gain qualifying times and distances in readiness for national and international competitions later in the season.
The first event on 10 January attracted CoNAC four runners. Callum McLaren, Jack Harrison and Martainn Ramsay competed in the U17 800m heats with Callum returning 2:14.44, Jack 2:16.95 and Martainn qualifying for the final with 2:06.67. Martainn running against incredible competition could only manage 2:12.36 in the final, missing out on a medal.
Aaron Pitt competing in only his second year of competition ran an unbelievable 400m straight final in a time of 52.63s which shattered the previous championship record by over half a second. It looks like another fantastic season ahead for this relative newcomer to the sport.
The weekend of 16 & 17 January marked the final competition of the series. Taking gold in her first ever U17 event was Laura McDonald who was last year's top UK U15 for both javelin and triple jump. Laura added nearly half a metre to her triple jump personal best to win with 11.4m, a distance that would have placed her second in the under 20 ladies competition. U17 sprinter Clieo Stephenson battled her way through heats and semis to record 25.96 seconds in the 200m to take a well earned bronze medal.
Great Yarmouth AC shot putter Sophie McKinna - who competes for CoNAC as a second claim-er - threw a series of massive throws culminating in a championship record breaking 13.18m to take the Gold in the U17 Women’s event.
On the Sunday, Iona Lake ran an excellent U20’s 1500m and was narrowly piped at the post to take the silver medal in 4.53.42. Laura McDonald and Clieo Stephenson both competed in the U17 60m sprint on the second day of the Championship with both winning their heat and qualifying through to the semi finals in 8.1s and 8.3s. Two younger CoNAC athletes, Ella Stephenson and Katie Vickery took part in the U15 60m shortly after, with Ella winning in 8.24s and Katie proceeding to the semi-finals with 8.61s.
Please click here to view a few snaps taken at this event.
The 2009 track & field rankings and club records for all ages have now been published - please click here for more details and to view the provisional 2010 fixture list. We will update this list when all the venues are confirmed.
Held in the new Curve facility at the Forum in Norwich, the annual EDP Active Norfolk Sports Awards evening once again recognised the success of CoNAC athletes and coaches alike. This year, against stiff opposition, CoNAC was again well represented amongst the finalists.
Tim Newenham, recently selected as England Athletics javelin coach mentor, took the converted title of ‘Coach of the Year’. The trophy was collected on Tim’s behalf by javelin prodigees Oliver Bradfield and Laura McDonald. Laura gave praise to Tim’s commitment and coaching methods, and gave thanks on behalf of CoNAC and the UK’s most successful javelin squad.
The title of Young Sportsperson of the Year was also hotly contested, with both Oliver Bradfield and Laura McDonald reaching the final three finalists. Those receiving particular mention of their nomination, but not quite reaching the final, included Aaron Pitt, Clieo Stephenson and Sophie McKinna. In the end, Oliver Bradfield took the title, helped by his World best throw for his age group this year of over 62 metres.
Also recognised at the event were the recipients of grant funding from the Norfolk Sports and Cultural fund. This year nine CoNAC members have received assistance from the fund in recognition of their performance in 2009, these include Mitch Goose, Rachael Stringer, Steph Burt, Michael Painter, Vicky Williamson, James McLachan and Sophie McKinna.
In addition, Clieo Stephenson and Laura McDonald have received specific sponsorship from the Norse group who are based in Norwich. Clieo and Laura accepted their awards from the directors of Norse and the chief executive of Norfolk County Council.
Following unprecedented success in track and field this season, we celebrated in style the Top of the Terrace restaurant at Norwich City FC. This season has seen an amazing number of CoNAC-ers taking national titles and topping the national rankings across a wide range of events.
Special guests included James Cudmore from England Athletics; Danny Nobbs, GB Paralympic shot thrower; and Paul Evans, Olympic 10,000m runner and Chicago Marathon winner. The evening recognised the accomplishments of those who get regular mentions in the press and on the internet as well as lesser known athletes who compete as part of the squad to gain vital points for their team through grit and determination.
The evening began with James Cudmore presenting two awards on behalf of England Athletics; firstly the "Junior Club of the Year - East" award in recognition of our achievements this season at regional & national level as well as our progressive links with local schools and the community through Sportshall athletics. Then James presented endurance coaches Tim & Pauline Ash with their "England Athletics East - Services to Sport" award in recognition of their dedication and help over many years that has helped produced international stars such as Rachel Stringer and Mitch Goose.
Individual trophies were kindly provided by event sponsor Wynsport www.wynsport.com to recognise excellence and achievement across all age groups:
U11 girls: track - Isabelle Chrysafi; field - Lauren Stansbury; U11 boys: track - Sam Forder; field - Alfie Linstead
U13 girls: track - Ellie Blunt; field - Ellie Blunt; achievement - Alice Cheverton & Lucy Cradley; U13 boys track - Ross Gilbert & Marvin Iseghehi; field - Ross McLachlan & Sam Green; achievement - Ashley Waterson
U15 girls: track - Clieo Stephenson; achievement - Victoria Mitchell & Kiera Mooney; field - Laura McDonald; achievement - Honor De Winton & Abi Martins; U15 boys track - Aaron Pitt; achievement - Steven Hadley; field - Oliver Bradfield & Michael Painter; achievement - Zino Mhae
U17 girls: track - Iona Lake & Laura Green; field - Stephanie Burt & Jenna Cannell; achievement Megan Thomas & Chloe Smith; U17 boys: track Ben Stratton & De La Re Weenendaal; field Callum Brown; achievement - Ed Skinner, Danny Clayton & Adam Howard
U20 women: track - Rachel Stringer, Becky Pike & Dani Nimmock; U20 men: track - James Senior; field - James McLachlan
Senior women: track - Hollie Rowland; Senior men: track - Ashley Harrell; field - Sam Coe
Masters: women - Jane Clarke; men - Gordon Slater
Special cups: high jump - Zino Mhae; most improved - Holly Durbridge; senior ladies - Hollie Rowland; senior men - James Senior & James McLachlan; junior ladies - Laura McDonald & Clieo Stephenson; junior men - Oliver Bradfield
The British Athletics League qualifying match at Abingdon on Saturday proved a step too far for the Club’s senior men’s team. It was an under-strength squad in some departments that made the long journey to Oxfordshire and despite their best efforts it was the overall strength of Mansfield Harriers and Glasgow City AC which prevailed to leave the City club with too big a mountain to climb.
Individual victories for the team were limited, with Ashley Harrell proving to be the best of the bunch with an outstanding run in the “A” 3000m steeplechase. Taking the lead early on in the race he powered his way round the seven and half laps to record 9min 08.10secs, a time that lowered his previous best performance by almost 14 seconds. Paul Goodall was another to impress when cruising to victory in the “A” 400m in a fast time of 48.56secs, as did Sam Coe when notching up the club’s only win in the field in the “A” Hammer by launching an effort out to 57.56m.
Rick Ward won a tactical “A” 800m race in a modest time of 1min 54.66secs while in the “A” 5000m Stuart Huntington dug deep to finish runner up in a time of 15min 23.70secs. The final event of the day was the 4 x 400m relay and this saw the team try and redeem some lost pride and finish on a high note but again were disappointed and had to settle for the silver position.
The 2010 track and field season will now see us compete in the Southern League Division One which will give some of the club’s youngsters the chance to move up and compete at senior level and in due course help the club to make that step back into the British Athletics League.
At the end of a season featuring 220 clubs across three national league structures and five matches blighted by fixture clashes, injuries and holidays, CoNAC finished runners up at Saturday's NYAL Auxiliary Final after a massive effort throughout the year and at the final itself. This was the first time that we had been to the final as a combined girls and boys team of U13's, U15's & U17's.
Two coaches packed with athletes and supporters departed for Birmingham from the Sportspark before most other people had even thought about rising and another day to remember was about to unfold. A fuller report will appear here soon to tell the story of some extraordinary performances.
As well as many personal bests, on Saturday we also broke three match records through Marvin Iseghehi in the U13B 75m hurdles and Oliver Bradfield & Laura McDonald in their respective U15 Javelin events; we won two 'Athlete of the Match' awards via Sam Green in the U13B Shot and Laura McDonald in the Javelin; and we ran, jumped and threw with everything we had, and more!
At the end of the day when the full team results were announced we had finished as runner's up to Reading AC - another result of which we can all be extremely proud, especially when one considers that another ten of the usual squad were unavailable on this occasion. This result ranks us tenth out of the 220 clubs competing across the whole country - a brilliant performance at the end of a long & tiring season.
Well done to all athletes, team managers and officials - now the challenge is.... can we go one better in 2010?
National Junior League premiership status retained! For the Club’s Junior (Under 20) team their disappointing track and field season ended on a high. Having finished the summer league programme in the lower reaches of the premier division the team required a top two finish in the promotion match held at Copthall Barnet on Sunday to retain their premiership status. After a great day of athletics that ebbed and flowed the goal was achieved with a degree of comfort.
Each and every athlete gave of their all for the cause. None more so than Michael Fraser who despite a very badly blistered foot he contested the “A” 100m 200m, 400m and both the 4 x 100m and 4 x 400m relays with his best result coming in the 400m in which he finished a creditable third in 51.6secs. James Senior was another who travelled home a very tired athlete. A fine win in the “A” 2000m Steeplechase when timed at 6min 11.8secs was preceded by a personal best in the “A” 400m Hurdles in which he placed second in 57.2secs and a fourth place in the “B” 110m Hurdles. He wrapped his day up along Michael Fraser in the 4 x 400m Relay team that finished in a close order second. In the field Ed Skinner and Harry Newenham notched up a double in the Javelin. On this occasion Skinner prevailed over his club rival taking the “A” contest with an effort of 45.41m with Newenham mopping up maximum points in the “B” with a throw of 43.98m. Earlier in the day Ed Skinner had displayed his talents in the “A” Pole Vault when clearing 3.72m to fill second place.
For the ladies Steph Burt produced a throw of 36.22m in the “A” Javelin that was good enough to place her second. She teamed up with Yarmouth based Sophie McKinna in the Shot in which Sophie finished second in the “A” contest with 11.69m while Burt mirrored that position in the “B” event with 8.19m. Jenna Cannell went one better in the Hammer when securing the top spot in the “A” contest with 43.12m. Megan Thomas’s effort of 33.60m in the “B” event was good enough to place her a clear second. On the track for the ladies Rachel Stringer proved to be a comfortable winner in the “A” 1500m in a modest time of 4min 35sec. Juliet Broster proved her worth when taking maximum points in the “B” race in 5min 11.5secs. Claire Pring while still displaying the form of which she is capable came home a gutsy second in the 3000m.
The competition format is that there are “A” and “B” string competitors in each event and it is more often that not that the “B” string athletes victories and runner-up places that make the difference between success and failure. Sunday’s competition was no exception with Ben Stratton winning both the “B” 1500m and 2000m Steeplechase, Sam Cheverton the “B” 1500m and runner-up in the 800m while Sophie Poyner took the honours in the “B” Triple Jump. Holly Slater cleared 1.45m to win the “B” High Jump with Laura Warman taking the spoils in “B” 400m Hurdles. Callum Brown just missed out on winning the “B” Hammer by the smallest of margins when throwing 31.35m.
The final points tally that delighted the club’s team and supporters was 1st Saxons AC - 499pts; 2nd CITY OF NORWICH AC - 456pts; 3rd Basildon Beagles - 419.5pts; 4th Medway & Maidstone AC - 410pts; 5th Team Southampton - 379pts; 6th Tonbridge AC 350pts; 7th Brighton & Hove AC 257pts; 8th Kingston & Poly AC 245.5pts.
It can be said that the team travelled to North London feeling less than confident of success but their “never say die” attitude prevailed throughout the day. Their total commitment to retaining their premiership status was duly rewarded and they can now look forward to the 2010 track and field season with a more than degree of confidence. However, they are under no illusion and know that against the might of the London clubs life will be tough, but with many of the club’s very promising and talented younger athletes available for selection 2010 will prove to be a very exciting albeit testing time.
The trip to the Lee Valley Athletic Centre in North London on Sunday proved to be a disappointment for the club's youngsters who were fighting to survive in the top-flight of the National Junior Athletic League.
Despite their best efforts the team could not lift themselves out of the bottom two positions so they will now have to go through the drama of a “play-off” match if they are to retain their current premier league status.
Due to holiday commitments and injuries it was a depleted team that travelled to compete against the might of the London clubs. James Senior recorded the club’s only “A” string win in a tactical 800m when clocking 1min 59.5secs. He kept himself busy when taking maximum points in the “B” 400m Hurdles and then going on to pick up valuable points in the “B” 100m Hurdles and “A” Shot.
Due to the lack of numbers there was considerable doubling up and in some cases athletes did three events. Jenna Cannell contested the “A” Hammer, Discus and Javelin with her best result coming in the Discus when her effort of 38.09m placed her in a creditable second place. Yarmouth based Sophie McKinna produced a putt of 11.72m which was good enough to give her the runners-up position in the “A” Shot.
Becky Pike was rewarded with a new personal best time of 63.9secs in the “A” 400m Hurdles in which she finished second. It was good to see Claire Pring back in action. Although, by her own high standards, her time of 10min 44.3secs was a modest one it was good enough to put her in second place in the “A” 3000m.
While each and every athlete gave of their all for the cause it proved to be an impossible task for the club’s gallant youngsters with survival in the top-flight diminishing as the day’s events progressed. When the final points score was announced the team’s worst fears were confirmed. They were placed 7th on the day and this position was replicated in their final league position. A top two position in the “play-off” fixture is team’s only hope of retaining their premier league status.
We were in action again this weekend at Bedford International Stadium for the second of this year's National Championships and this time it was the throwers who brought home the medals.
U15 javelin throwers Laura McDonald and Oliver Bradfield both won their respective National titles against stiff competition and after a three-week rest period from their last major competition in London. Laura recorded her best distance of 41.89m with her final throw of six, while team mate Oliver achieved 52.53m to take the boys' title. Under guidance from coach Tim Newenham, both now hold their respective the English Schools, AAA and County titles for their age groups as well as being ranked number 1 in Great Britain.
Another brilliant performance came from U15B Michael Painter who took silver in the hammer on Saturday with 60.91m and then threw a magnificent 42.95m in the discus on Sunday to earn his second silver. He also finished 7th in the shot with 12.33m; a truly outstanding all round display of throwing.
Other noticeable achievements came from U15G Clieo Stephenson who finished 4th in Saturday's 100m in a time of 12.27s and then 5th in the 200m with a new pb of 25.33s. Callum Brown took 7th position in the U17B hammer with 56.05m, Kiera Mooney ran 2:19.58 in her heat of the U15G 800m but just missed out on the final. Ben Stratton took 6th place in the U17B 1500 steeplechase and Iona Lake finishing 8th place in the U17G 1500m in a time of 4:41.50.
Jenna Cannell finished 9th in the U17G hammer with 42.35m while Laura Green just missed out on a place in the U17G 80m hurdles final when finishing fourth in her heat with a time of 12.17s. Katie Vickery (U15G long jump) and De La Ray Veenendaal (U17B 400m, 50.94s) completed the CoNAC athletes on display.
Congratulations to all 12 athletes for meeting the qualification standard and achieving such wonderful performances over the weekend.
CoNAC-er Sean Watson, in his best performance to date, secured a place in the Great Britain team for the World Biathlon Championships in Monaco next month with an emphatic third individual place in the UK Championships held at Salford Quays in Manchester at the weekend.
Watson, 14, competed in the boys' group C category which involves a 500m run, a 100m open water swim and then another 500m run. Sean got away well and came off the first run phase in second place. After a very cold open water swim he was still third but lost another place in transition.
But in the second 500m run the race unfolded as the competitors vied for a top six finish which would secure a place at the World Championships. As the athletes came out of the final run phase, the fast-finishing Watson moved into a medal position and booked his place in the GB team.
Watson, who swims with Dereham Otters, clearly put his 2007 disappointment aside when he finished an agonising seventh to miss out on GB selection by just one second. Now he deservedly sets his sights on the World Championships in Monaco on 20 September 2009.
Our senior men’s team travelled to Kings Lynn to compete in the final Southern Men’s League Division 2 fixture of the season. Promotion back up to the first division was already in the bag but it was important that they finished the summer campaign with a flourish. This they duly did with a degree of ease.
With throws specialists Sam Coe and John Painter making a welcome appearance, maximum points were secured in the hammer, shot and discus. In Coe’s preferred event, the hammer, he produced a winning effort of 60.47m while Painter’s best effort came in the Discus with a winning throw of 33.81m.
Yarmouth based Jahmal Mills notched up an impressive double when winning the “A” Long Jump with 6.78m before going on to clear a winning 1.80m in the “A” High Jump. Graham Stark and Chris Marshall scored maximum points in the “A” and “B” Triple Jump when moving out to 12.41m and 11.06m respectively. Daryl Martin produced a winning 57.6sec in the “A” 400m Hurdles while Chris Marshall took the honours in the “B” race in 60.1secs. Martin also produced a winning effort in the “A” 110m Hurdles when timed at 17.0secs.
The endurance athletes also made hay in ideal racing conditions when taking full points in the 800m, 1500m and 3000m Steeplechase. Rick Ward and Jonny Quint eased their way round the “A” and “B” 800m races not needing to break the two-minute barrier for victory. The “A” and “B” 1500m races went the same way with James Jackson and new recruit Albie von Gordon proving to be comfortable winners in modest times of 4min 05.1secs and 4min 09.5secs. In the “A” 3000m Steeplechase, Ashley Harrell livened up proceedings when he produced a fine solo run to win in an impressive 9min 22.7secs and James Senior took the honours in the “B” race with 9min 46.4secs.
The team rounded off the afternoon with comfortable victories in the 4 x 100m and 4 x 400m relays. The only disappointment on the day, albeit minor, was that team was not promoted as champions. In the league’s round robin set-up the club although sharing the same league points as Harrow Athletic Club, the team had to settle for the runners-up spot as Harrow had accrued 17½ more match points overall.
The final points score on the day was: 1st) CITY OF NORWICH AC 161pts; 2nd) Ryston Runners 136pts; 3rd) Stevenage & North Herts AC 80pts; 4th) Colchester Harriers AC 68pts; 5th) Chichester Runners & AC 40pts.
CoNAC's youngsters now hold a very teuous grip on their place in the Southern Premier Division of the National Junior Athletic League and it will take a supreme effort in the final fixture to avoid the drop.
The weekend trip to Bromley saw them finish a disappointing seventh despite the valiant efforts of those who turned out. Injuries and non-availability due to holiday commitments decimated the team and gave the team managers a real headache.
Still in the Under 17 age group De La Rey Veenendaal contested the three sprints where he found the competition to be extremely tough against the power of the London club’s sprinters. His praiseworthy times of 11.4secs for 100m, 23.3secs for 200m and 50.6secs for 400m could only place him in the lower half of the field.
In the middle distance events James Jackson produced two good results. In the 800m he broke 2 minutes for the first time when recording 1min 59.9secs to finish third then going one better in the 3000m when crossing the line in 8min 58.8secs. The club’s star performance on the day came from James Senior. Competing in the 2000m Steeplechase he left the opposition trailing when posting 5min 53.8secs, a time that places him top of the UK junior ranking list by a wide margin.
Stephanie Burt's effort of 32.53m in the Javelin was good enough to place her second a position mirrored by Sophie McKinna in the Shot in which he produced a fine effort of 11.82m. Chloe Smith cleared 1.55m in the High Jump a performance that was good enough to place her third while Jenna Cannell produced a throw of 42.24m in the Hammer to fill third place. Iona Lake achieved two third places in the 800m and 1500m when recording 2min 20.6secs and 4min 48.9secs respectively.
Despite the very best efforts of the team members, overall it was a disappointing day for the club that left them firmly placed in the relegation zone. Even with a full turnout for the final fixture it will a take a minor miracle to survive the drop so the only way to retain their premiership status could be by route of the play-offs.
The final scores on the day were: 1st) Shaftsbury Barnet Harriers 521pts; 2nd) Blackheath & Bromley Harriers & AC 519½pts; 3rd) Enfield & Haringey AC 481pts; 4th) Woodford Green with Essex Ladies AC 442pts; 5th) Windsor, Slough. Eton & Hounslow AC 430pts; 6th) Harrow AC 352pts; 7th) CITY OF NORWICH AC 324 ½ pts; 8th) Team Cambridge 301pts.
Super vet Jane Clarke continues to impress when breaking her own British record for the mile in the Cambridgeshire Development fixture at St Ives earlier this evening.
It was at Peterborough during the summer of 2008 that she first broke the British record when recording 5min 19.00secs in the Mizuno Mile Series so she was delighted that almost a year later she was able to improve her time down to an impressive 5min 15.9secs.
Of course, it's not becoming to state a lady's age so it's suffice to say that Jane competes in the 45-49 year category! Congratulations to Jane on a super performance.
What a brilliant day for our club at Norman Park, Bromley on Sunday as every single CoNAC-er pulled out all the stops in what was an uterly amazing performance. We were pitched in a battle royal with those London "giants" from Blackheath & Bromley and Enfield & Haringey, not to mention Aldershot Farnham and District AC.
To meet our ambition of getting to the auxillary final on 5 September we had to finish in the top two places, unless we finished third and Southampton failed to win their event.
With that in mind, CoNAC fielded what must be one of our best junior track and field teams for a long time, despite some familiar faces being absent on the first weekend of the school holidays. The day started with mid sprints, progressing through middle distance, then back to the short sprints and hurdles. We knew that both the London clubs were tremendously strong over the shorter distances, but CoNAC's athletes dug in deep and held their own across the board.
One young lady who excelled in such fantastic competition was Ellie Blunt, a truly brilliant 150m sprint in 20.3s (G1) to finish in second place, then completing the 70m hurdles in 12.2s (G1). To top that, Ellie then took a deep breath on the finish line and immediately walked over to the high jump to win with 1.35m. Ellie typified the quality of competitor that ran, jumped and threw their way through what became a gigantuan day long effort.
As the day progressed, our middle distance runners took to the track and extraordinary performances came from every age group. Iona Lake won both the U17W 800m and 1500m showing form that would stand her in good stead in a national competition. Harry Simmons, James Steel and Ashley Waterson - all wonderfully promising middle distance runners - took the 800 and 1500m in the U13 boys. And then there was Aaron Pitt in the U15 boys 800m who ran what is quickly becoming his signature race, hanging back in the middle of the pack before storming the last 100m to take the win.
We lost a little headway in the short sprints with incredible competition coming from the London clubs, but we battled on. Clieo Stephenson ran a fantastic race when pitched against Desiree Henry and Dina Asher-Smith to finish third. With Blackheath and Enfield neck and neck at the top of the scoreboard, we then unleashed our field offensive in the hammer, shot and javelin with long jump and high jump adding more points to the pile.
The day was not without its casualties however, an extremely busy time over the last five weeks meant that at one stage we were losing competitors to injury at an unsustainable rate, this despite being offered the use of Blackheath’s physio to help patch up our "injured soldiers".
With the final races of the day being the relays, the attrition of the event started to show. However, despite disqualifications in both the U17 boys and U17 girls 4x100m, the spirits were truly lifted by monumentus runs from both our U17 and U15 boys 4x400m relay teams. Aaron Pitt, Alex Lubbock, Sean Watson and Ben Steward running a text-book 3:50.9 to take the U15 event, and De La Rey Veenendaal, Jack Harrison, Callum McLaren and Ben Stratton drawing screams from the CoNAC supporters as they fought so bravely for the U17 boys, just missing out on the win as they took second place in 3:39.50.
We knew as the day finished that we could have done no more; it was a magnificent effort from every single CoNAC-er against two of the strongest clubs in the UK. It wasn’t until we were on the bus on the way home that the call came through that we had indeed got 3rd place, but how had Southampton fared in their match?
Well it wasn't until 11am on the Monday that we knew, Southampton had been beaten into third place! So we're off the the auxillary final on 5 September. Well done all you junior CoNAC-ers, we're truly proud of what you have achieved for this is the first time that we have ever had a combined team through to the finals.
Final scores (after 82 events) - 1 Blackheath & Bromley H & AC 458pts; 2 Enfield & Haringay AC 448.5pts; 3 City of Norwich AC 431 pts; 4 Aldershot Farnham & District AC 218.5pts.
For many young athletes, the annual individual highlight is probably the English Schools Track & Field Championships every July. With one of the largest individual entries of any championship in the UK, competitors are drawn from the Area, County and Regional school competitions all over England. Age groups are junior (under 15), intermediate (under 17) and senior (under 19) as at 31 August at the end of the current academic year. Team sizes are dependant on the number of children in secondary education in each county, so although Norfolk has a large geographical area we are sparcely populated when compared to the more urban areas of the country. This limits us to a team of just 25 athletes; well - as they say - "it's quality not quantity that matters" and this year's event was to prove that point! With no less than 19 young CoNAC-ers in the Norfolk squad, another hurdling for Suffolk and one more jumping for the Northamptonshire team, the club was particularly well represented when proceedings started both on the track and in the field at 10am on the Friday.
Day 1 - First out of the blocks was Tom Hook in the 1500m junior boys who ran a spirited 4:27.75 in heat 2 to finish in 8th place. At the same time in the adjacent Woodburn Stadium, Jenna Cannell competed in the first qualifying round of the inter girls hammer and - with a throw of 40.23m - achieved fourth place in the initial rounds to qualify for Saturday's final.
10am also heralded the start of a hotly contested inter girls Javelin with Steph Burt, one of three CoNAC javelin throwers at these championships, taking to the field. With the first three throws complete, Steph moved forward to the second round and acquitted herself well with 38.74m to finish in 6th place overall.
Turning back to the track, junior sprinter Clieo Stephenson lined up for her heat of the 100m, the result of which can only be described as incredible. With intense concentration on her face the young athlete settled down on the start line awaiting the gun. And with an instantaneous explosive response, virtually predicting the gun, Clieo burst from the ground to lead the race from the instant it began and finish 0.4s ahead of her nearest rival in a time of 12.21s; the fastest qualifier for Saturday's final and a new pb.
A few minutes later Michael Fraser took his place on the start line in the senior boys 100m, but despite a good start he missed out on the final with a time of 11.10s. Closely following, Laura Green ran in the inter girls 80m hurdles on the opposite straight, completing the distance in 12.15s and finishing 6th in her heat.
Next up was James Senior who took to the track in the heats of the senior boys 800m to place a disappointing 6th in a time of 1:55.29. The final had seemingly eluded him, but an objection for unnecessary pushing during the race was upheld to see James through to tomorrow's final. Chloe Smith competing in the inter girls high jump managed 1.54m, but unfortunately not enough to place her in the medals.
At midday Oliver Bradfield stepped onto the Javelin run up, the second of Tim Newenham’s squad to throw this weekend. All eyes were on Oliver as the stadium had great expectations of this young lad in his first year of competition at English Schools. With a demonstration of sheer brilliance, he launched his distictive spiral painted javelin towards the blue sky – and did it glide, landing 60.42m away to shatter the championship record by almost 6m. The crowd acknowledged Norfolk’s first gold of the championship and yet another superb throw from this gifted athlete.
At the same time in the nearby Woodburn Stadium, Callum Brown (one of three CoNAC hammer throwers at this event trained by John Painter) threw a tremendous 53.54m in the inter boys to secure 7th place overall.
Back on the track, Vicky Mitchell settled down to run her heat in the junior 200m. Her fantastic effort of 26.01s placed her just outside the qualifing time for the next round. Next up was Kiera Mooney in the junior 800m. Running in a very tight pack on the first lap tucked into third position, Kiera finished in a time of 2:21.89 to take a respectable 5th place in the heat.
Another intermediate 800m competitor was Aaron Pitt, a relative newcomer to the club. Aaron’s performance in this race completly stunned everyone at the event! Running a good steady race, Aaron sat halfway in the field until the final straight when he unleashed a ferocious finish to sprint past the entire field and become the joint fastest qualifier in 2:02.43.
Iona Lake took part in the inter 1500m at her first ESAA Championship and had a fine run of 4:52.45 to secure 7th place in her heat. The penultimate performance on the track on Friday was Anna Spratt, representing Suffolk in the heats of the inter girls 300m hurdles. Anna managed 48.62s but missed out on a qualifying place in the final.
Michael Painter, one of CoNAC’s multi-talented heavy throws athletes, brought to a close the field events for Friday with a fantastic effort of 56.28m in the junior boys Hammer to earn him a well deserved silver medal. Michael, Jenna and Callum are all exceptional throwers and it's a real shame that their events had to take place at Woodburn Stadium, away from the main arena. The standard of competition was exceptional and it's regretable that they were missed by the large crowds in the Don Valley Stadium.
With the last event of the day being the relays, it was all eyes on Norfolk's junior girls squad of Emma Tilbrook (West Norfolk) and CoNAC’s Laura McDonald, Vicky Mitchell and Clieo Stephenson. The girls acquitted themselves well with a run of 49.96s - the second fastest time of the day - and they were rewarded with lane 4 for the final, beside Kent the fastest qualifiers.
What a day - with a gold and a silver already under Norfolk's belt and a mass of talent waiting in the wings for Saturday, the scene was set for what would become a historical milestone for the county and the club.
Day 2 - Saturday started with a great air of expectation, bright blue skies and a light breeze greeted the athletes as they arrived. The crowd had doubled in size and the Sky Sports tv crews mingled with officials setting up on the field. First off was the junior girls javelin with Laura McDonald looking to improve on the silver she won in 2008 at Gateshead. A full field of 23 competitors lined up for the first three throws. With practice over, the crowd’s eyes were drawn to the sound of the official warning that the event had begun. The first two throwers ranged between 30-34m; then Laura walked out to the second lane of the track, tightened her hair band and stood staring at the field. Bouncing in her stride as she accelerated towards the line, she snapped her hip forward and formed a perfect crescent as her right arm hurtled the javelin past her head. Beyond the 40m line it went, hitting the ground with a dull thud. Officials with the EMD were quickly on the scene and all eyes turned to the scoreboard - 43.13m, a new pb for Laura and the second longest throw ever in her age group. With 90 more trials left in the event, she'd won gold with her first throw!
Jenna Cannell travelled over to Woodburn Stadium again to compete in the final of the inter girls hammer. Throwing a very solid 43.88m, Jenna finished 5th overall. James Senior, having qualified for the senior boy’s 800m final on Friday after an appeal, now took to the track. Running roughly in the centre of the pack for the first lap, James was to finish 6th in a time of 1:54.14.
Honor De Winton, representing Northampton, then competed in the junior girls long jump and achieved 5.32m to finish in 5th place. James McLachlan, having recently competed for England in the World Schools Cup, contested the senior boys triple jump. He recovered well from two initial 'no jumps' to record a colossal 15.26m to take a well-deserved silver.
It was now time for Aaron Pitt to return for the final of the junior boys 800m. Aaron was virtually unknown on the track until his awesome heat the day before, just what could this young lad come up with now? Tucked into the front of the pack for the first lap, Aaron ran a sensational race moving up to second on the last bend and threatening the leader all the way down the final straight to finish in 2:02.10 and take a well-earned silver medal.
Zeno Mhae from Wymondham College has quite literally just appeared on the scene at CoNAC and along with Aaron his talent is obvious to those that enjoy watching sport. Zeno started the junior boys high jump at a relatively safe entry and was quickly moving up in height. There were some heart stopping moments as he took the bar off along the way, but he always pulled the jump back and progressed to the next height. A large entry took time to cycle through, but Zeno stood the test and with the competition favourite failing on three attempts, Zeno progressed on to 1.87m to take the gold medal position. With regular coaching, just what performance awaits us here? At the same time as Zeno was jumping, Ed Skinner was across the other side of the track competing in the intermediate pole vault. Ed was clearly frustrated having topped out at 3.65m but a good effort nontheless.
At 3.10pm, the highlight of the day's track events was about to take place - the junior girls 100m. Clieo Stephenson, now allowed to use blocks in the final, adjusted them to her feet. A clear, calculating expression filled her face, as she knew that 'this one could be hers'. Her coach Mike Utting had travelled up to Sheffield with CoNAC chairman Clive Poyner early that morning and you would have thought it was Mike who was about to run the race, not Clieo - but he had prepared her well. The starter called the girls to order, adding just a few seconds for the two TV crews who were working across the start line to squeeze that extra little piece of fear from the runners' eyes. Despite this, Clieo stood perfectly still. 'Take to your marks' - now a complete silence of expectation enveloped the stadium. 'Set' – the silence was quickly broken by a sharp crack from the starter's pistol and the roar of the crowd. Like an enactment rehearsed a thousand times before in training, Clieo ripped away from the blocks, her body inclining upwards as she accelerated away from the start. With only Kate Wasyliw from West Yorkshire staying with her through the first 30m, Clieo clenched her fists and threw every once of her strength into the race. The next six seconds passed in a flash with the field dropping back; Kate was now well outside Clieo’s vision and she piled on the power. From someone looking through a telephoto lens from the finish line, I can tell you a smile beamed across Clieo's face five metres from the line as she realised the gold was hers! An utterly awesome spectacle, recorded for prosperity by the throng of cameras at the finish. 12.24s in a person's lifetime is a blink of an eye, but it's 12.24s and a gold medal engraved ‘junior girls 100m’ that Clieo and Mike Utting will treasure for the rest of their lives.
The final event for Norfolk was the junior girls 4x100m relay. Having qualified in second place to Kent on the Friday the four girls assumed their stations. It may not have been the cleanest run ever by the team but 48.71s is certainly the fastest time ever recorded by any Norfolk womens team in any age group and - with a splendid burst on the last leg from Clieo Stephenson - the silver medals were claimed in some style.
The icing on the cake came at the end of the Championships when Norfolk was awarded the junior boys and junior girls trophies for group C, as well as the Minor Counties Trophy.
Gold medals: Clieo Stephenson, Junior Girls 100m; Laura McDonald, Junior Girls Javelin; Oliver Bradfield, Junior Boys Javelin (and new CBP); Zeno Mhae, Junior Boys High Jump.
Silver medals: Michael Painter, Junior Boys Hammer; Aaron Pitt, Junior Boys 800m; Emma Tilbrook (West Norfolk AC), Laura McDonald, Vicky Mitchell & Clieo Stephenson - Junior Girls 4x100m relay; James McLachlan, Senior Boys Triple Jump.
Afterwards, a delighted CoNAC chairman Clive Poyner summed up the fantastic performances of our athletes. "Sometimes superlatives are not enough" he said. "These tremendous performances came together to aid Norfolk in capturing three trophies - the Junior Girls and Junior Boys won their categories and the Minor Counties Cup was retained - having won it last year for the first time in 40 years. There were some genuinely proud long serving supporters around at 6.30pm on Saturday. Well done to one and all of our athletes for a great weekend's athletics that will long be remembered."
While the younger CoNAC-ers were successfully representing Norfolk at the English Schools Track & Field Championships in Sheffield, the senior men’s team travelled to Windsor to compete in the penultimate fixture of the Southern Men’s T&F League where they were looking to consolidate their position in the promotion stakes to Division 1.
The day proved to be a real test of character for the team with every point scored making an important contribution to the overall result. Once more Paul Goodall proved his worth when winning both the “A” 200m (22.5secs) and 400m (49.2secs) to which he added a pleasing third in the “A” 100m (11.4secs). In each of the “B” sprints Goodall was ably backed by Tom Pegg in the 100m (11.6secs), Chris Marshall in the 200m (23.8secs) and Graham Stark in the 400m (55.0secs), who rallied to the cause when all were placed second in their respective events.
In the field Sam Coe was another to make his mark when taking on the “A” Shot, Discus and Hammer. His best result came in the Hammer in which he produced a massive 60.13m winning throw.
On the track it was good to see Steve Cannell back in action in the 3000m Steeplechase. Racing for the first time in ages he won the “A” race in a comfortable 9min 46.3sec. James Jackson took the “B” race in 9min 57.9secs, this after just missing out on dipping under 2 minutes for the first time in the “B” 800m when winning in 2min 0.3secs.
With only the relays to complete the day’s athletics the points tally was extremely close with CoNAC, Harrow AC and Thurrock Harriers very much in the mix. And after a workmanlike second place in the sprint relay it was left to the 4 x 400m squad to pull out the stops to secure a win. This they duly did with plenty to spare winning by the considerable margin of 20 seconds.
It was a nail biting time before the final points score was announced that we had won the meeting by half of one point from Harrow AC. The final scores were 1st) CITY OF NORWICH AC 122pts; 2nd) Harrow AC 121½ pts 3rd) Thurrock Harriers 121pts; 4th) Aldershot Farnham & District AC 101pts; 5th) Newquay & Par AC 65½ pts.
The final league fixture of the season will take place in Kings Lynn on 1 August, which for the club is almost on home turf and - barring a total disaster - we should be able to confirm our place in Division 1 for next season.
Two of City of Norwich AC's rising stars made their mark internationally when competing for England in the World Cup for Schools Track & Field Championships that were staged in Tallian, Estonia last weekend.
James McLachlan competed in the 100m and his favoured event the Triple Jump. A creditable time of 11.38sec placed him sixth in the 100m. But it was in the Triple Jump that he produced a medal winning performance when placed a close second to Algerian Faycal Medourene when moving out to 14.57m, just 16cm off the top spot on the podium.
James Senior admits that he should have performed better. Competing in the 800m he failed to display the form of which he is capable and at the end of a hard fought race he had to settle for fifth place in a time of 1min 55.97sec.
A huge consolation for the boys was that they had the satisfaction of being part of the winning England team who pushed the host country Estonia into a distant second place. This coming weekend both will be competing for Norfolk in the English Schools Track & Field Championships that are being staged in Sheffield and will have the honour of leading the parade of teams in recognition of the England victory in Estonia.
Six athletes from the Ashley School and ex-pupil Adam Szucs, now at Otley College, took part in the 2009 Open National Athletics Championships for athletes with a learning disability at Watford on Saturday. These Championships came a year on from competing in their first National Championships in Manchester last June and their superb efforts then were matched with another set of excellent results this year. Approximately 300 athletes took part across a full range of athletic activities from under 15‘s through to senior level. All athletes entered a maximum of three events.
Chelsea Dixon, Holly Durbidge, Kimberley Aspland, Declan Manning and Lewis Pryke along with Adam have been training since last September with City of Norwich AC plus local gym training, swim training and extra training sessions at school, attending National squad training sessions all over the country and in May competed for England in Paris at the French Open National Championships. After this full year all the athletes were in good shape and feeling confident about their own levels of performance prior to Saturday’s event. They were joined by Antony Warne a year 9 pupil from the school who had met the qualifying standards in PE lessons and at the EASS competition and showed potential. The group - along with teachers Jackie and Roger Milton, parents and grandparents - travelled to Watford on Friday evening. The group totalled 20 with some parents travelling down independently so there was great support for the athletes on competition day. The group met up on Friday evening with some of the England squad athletes they had met in Paris, having kept in touch through msn and texts. “Meeting other athletes from across the country & keeping in touch is really important for social development and team identity”, said PE teacher Jackie Milton.
It was an early start on Saturday with Lewis having to check in for his first event the 80m hurdles at 10am. It was an excellent start for Lewis winning his event in a new National Record time of 14.91secs smashing the old one of 16.10secs. He then went on to win the javelin with a throw of 32.90m, not quite as good as his National Record of 35.10m but setting a new Championship record. With two golds under his belt his final event was the long jump for which he holds the National Record at 5.12m. However this did not go as well as planned and he finished with a silver medal.
Adam was in one of the toughest events, the Under 20 sprints. Having qualified for the final after a PB time of 12.41secs in the heats he came home in the final in 3rd place gaining a well deserved bronze medal. The 200m was a tough event with Adam finishing in 5th position but coming through the finishing line very strongly. The 400m was a straight final and again a very tough field of sprinters. Adam secured another well deserved bronze in a time of 60.38secs.
Declan started the day with his 800m and kept with the lead runner who pushed Declan through a good first lap in 64 seconds, he kept the pace going and finished with a PB of 2.30.42, knocking 2 seconds off the PB he set in Paris. This time should also be ratified as a new National Record. He followed this excellent performance with a gold in the discus and bronze in the shot.
Antony Warne, new to the group, had to wait until after lunch for his three events. Starting with the long jump he secured his first National Champion title and in the shot put he threw well and finished in a fine 3rd position. He was very determined going into his sprint event the 200m and after running a fine bend extended his lead and finished over 20m in front of the rest securing his second gold of the day. He hopes now to be invited to attend the next England squad training session in Manchester in September.
Holly Durbidge was in fine form for her three events. Starting with her weakest, the shot, she put in three good attempts and finished with a silver medal. Her next event was the 200m where she stormed round the bend leaving the field behind her finishing in a PB of 30.98secs taking her first gold and followed this with another gold in the discus, dominating this event as she had in Paris where she set a new National Record of 21.32m.
Kimberley Aspland was determined not to be beaten in any of her three events, starting with the 800m where she had set a new National Record in Paris. She was only just outside this time despite having to run from the front with little competition behind her. In the Long Jump she set a PB and took another gold medal. This left the 200m where she was pushed to the finish line in her heat, but after a longer recovery pulled away from the field to win by 20m, securing her 3rd gold medal of the day.
Chelsea Dixon started her events with the Long Jump where she was current National and Championship Record holder; she was victorious again and beat her own record set in Manchester last year. In the 100m she ran with strength and came across the line to take gold in a fine 14.40secs. Her favourite event the 3000m was timetabled for 1pm and in the blistering heat was a gruelling race. Despite the weather she ran a very solid race just outside her own National Record and secured her 3rd gold of the day.
"Last year's medal tally from Manchester was impressive but that was extended even further this year. Out of 21 events the group took 14 gold, 2 silver and 4 bronze medals and all were very well deserved and a result of a year of constant training" said Mrs Milton. "Between them these athletes now hold 10 National Records and their names are becoming well known on the national scene. Paul Burns, head coach for the England squad, was delighted with their performances and based on these and other fine performance in Paris and other local events, all 6 along hopefully with Antony will get their call up and be reselected for the England squad. We could not have hoped for a better year and I am very lucky and proud to be able to work with such a talented group of young athletes who all - if they continue to train hard - have a very positive athletic career ahead of them."
She added "Many thanks go to Kingsley Healthcare whose sponsorship has enabled all this to happen, to the parents and grandparents for their continued help and support, to the coaches at City of Norwich AC and to the school for support with transport etc. We now embark on another year of hard work but are very excited as to what opportunities and successes will be ahead of us."
It was a depleted senior men’s team that travelled to Perivale, West London yesterday to compete in the fourth Southern Men’s League Division Two fixture of the season. But despite their lack of numbers, this proved to be a successful trip for the team.
Loughborough student Paul Goodall made a tremendous contribution to the club’s tally of points, which even included a points scoring appearance in the Pole Vault. However, it was in the sprints that Goodall made his greatest impact when winning the “A” 400m in 49.1secs. His second win of the day came in the “B” 200m in which he recorded a pleasing 22.5secs. And sandwiched between this was a runners up position in the “B” 100m when clocking 11.4secs. Michael Fraser made it a club double when winning the “A” 200m in a time of 22.9secs.
Young Harry Newenham also proved to be a very busy athlete when contesting all four throws. His best result came in the “A” Javelin in which he finished second with an effort of 42.38m. Sprinter Tom Pegg helped make up for the shortfall in the throws department when taking second place in the “B” Javelin and fourth place in the “A” Shot as did Team Manager and ex-international long jumper Denis Costello in the “A” Hammer and “B” Discus which he followed with a 1.70m clearance in the “A” High Jump to take fourth place.
On the track Daryl Martin was another to do his bit for the cause when winning the opening track event the “A” 400m Hurdles in 57.2secs, which he followed with a second place in the “A” 110m Hurdles crossing the line in 16.5secs. Chris Marshall took the honours in the “B” 400m Hurdles when timed at 60.2secs. Jonny Quint covered the “A” 800m, “B” 1500m and “A” 5000m with his best result being achieved in the “A” 800m in which he finished second in a time of 1min 59.7secs. James Jackson, a 1500m athlete by trade took on the 3000m Steeplechase to secure a comfortable victory in the “A” race when recording 10min 37.5secs.
The team rounded off their busy day with hard fought victories in both the 4x100m and 4x400m relays; these two results made sure that when the final points were tallied up we came out on top. The final scores were: 1st City of Norwich AC 122pts; 2nd Ealing, Southall & Middlesex AC 114pts; 3rd St Mary’s AC Richmond 106pts; 4th Guildford & Godalming AC 94pts; 5th Croydon Harriers 91pts.
This close victory now lifts us to third place in the league standings. With two fixtures remaining and five teams gaining promotion into next season's Division 1, the omens look good.
For eager athletes and parents alike, the meeting of the Norfolk selection committee on Sunday evening was sure to bring either disappointment or great relief. Well, those who made it onto the list will know by now that they are off to Sheffield to compete on 10 & 11 July. Hopefully parents and family are already searching the internet for their accommodation over that weekend. And if you are travelling as a spectator, please remember that you will also need to purchase tickets for the event - visit www.sheffieldarena.co.uk or call the ticket hotline on 0114 256 5656.
The eighteen CoNAC athletes chosen to represent Norfolk on this occasion are: Tom Hook JB 1500m, Michael Painter JB hammer, Oliver Bradfield JB javelin, Clieo Stephenson JG 100m, Vicky Mitchell JG 200m, Kiera Mooney JG 800m, Laura McDonald JG javelin, Ed Skinner IB pole vault, Callum Brown IB hammer, Iona Lake IG 1500m, Laura Green IG 80m hurdles, Megan Thomas IG hammer, Jenna Cannell IG hammer, Steph Burt IG javelin, Cloe Smith IG high jump, Michael Fraser SB 100m, James Senior SB 800m and James McLachlan SB triple jump.
And more good news - a county JG 4x100m relay team has also been entered. This will be drawn from the four CoNAC girls who have qualified in their own discipline along with Emma Tilbrook, who joins us from West Norfolk to train with our Wednesday long jump session.
We wish them all every success - and maybe they can top the fantastic 2008 results that saw many medals return to Norwich?
The day after the Anglia Schools championships, CoNAC were on the road again. Meeting at 7.30am, the club trekked down to south of the Thames for a ‘make or break’ NYAL meeting. Great work by Jacqui Green, Clive Poyner (CoNAC’s chairman) and others had completed the ground work before the event, making everyone aware – CoNAC must win this to stand a chance of getting to the auxillary final.
Well, for those who stayed at home to watch the F1 Grand Prix on TV, you missed the best sport of the day as it was all happening south of the river as we locked ourselves in battle with the junior athletic Goliaths that are Tonbridge AC, Harrow AC and Croydon AC; and they were all keen on reaching the same highground as the youngsters from CoNAC.
Every CoNAC athlete who was able competed with every last once of strength they had; many of that number having already given 100% the previous day at the Anglian Schools championship in a bid for a place at the English Schools AA championships in July. Accordingly the resultant effort was admirably encapsulated by Jacqui Green, one of a very hard working CoNAC team managers;
“What a really great effort was made by all the team, we had so many athletes filling in for extra events that they would not normally do, this really helped us pick up those vital points we needed. On the girls side I had so many athletes doing this, the list is endless but one I would like to mention was Grace Ashworth in the under 13 girls, who was pulled out in the middle of the shot competition to fill in for Ellie Blunt who in a lot of pain had to drop out of the hurdles injured, just 10 mins before the event. Grace had barely time to catch her breath from changing into her spikes and no time for any hurdle drills before the race started and she ran a pb, along with Jessica McNaughton who also got a pb. Having lost 2 members of the relay team for the under 13 girls through injuries, the reserve Grace Ashworth was already in the relay, Ashleigh Bunn came to the rescue and filled in the other slot. We had many very tired athletes in the under 15's and under 17's who had competed the day before at Anglian Schools and they all gave it their best for the club and team, it was great to see such team spirit and effort by all of them, and some still produced pb's as well.
Well the magnificent efforts of the youngster’s from Norwich certainly proved fruitful, with the lead shifting backwards and forwards between the four clubs. Indeed it was not until the Norwich squad were actually sitting on the bus ready to leave Croydon for home, that the final score was announced.
1 City of Norwich AC 412.5; 2 Croydon Harriers 390.5; 3 Harrow AC 372.5; 4 Tonbridge AC 336.5
What this means now is that CoNAC now has one more NYAL league meeting left on 19 July; if CoNAC comes third and Southampton doesn’t win their match, then CoNAC are in the Auxilliary final. However, if Southampton win their match then CoNAC must get at least second place. So it’s all hands to the pumps then on 19 July!
Before praising some exceptional individual performances, the club would especially like to thank the team managers and officials who gave their time on the day (and prior to the event). Without these volunteers the Norwich athletes couldn’t have concentrated on the task in hand – a worthy win indeed.
U17 Men 3000m ‘A’ 1st Thomas Francis 09:53.8, 1500m ‘A’ 2nd 4:28.77 and then competed in the 4x400m! U17 Men 1500m SC ‘A’ 1st Ben Stratton 4;42.79; U17 Men 5Kg Hammer ‘A’ 1st Danny Clayton 40.62m; U17 Men 700Kg Javelin ‘A’ 1st Ed Skinner 43.25m, Pole vault ‘A’ 1st 3.7m, U17 Women 3000m ‘A’ 1st Iona Lake 12:04.67: U17 Women 3000m ‘A’ 1st Emily Cowen 12:43.22: U17 Women 80m Hurdles ‘A’ 1st Laura Green 12.03 G1; U17 Women 300m Hurdles ‘A’ 1st Anna Spratt 48.13s; U17 Women 4Kg Hammer ‘A’ 1st Jenna Cannell 41.24 G1, 1.0Kg Discus ’A’ 1st 26.46m; U17 Women 4Kg shot ‘A’ 1st Steph Burt 8.79m, 600Kg Javelin ‘A’ 1st 35.46m G1.
U15 Boys 4Kg Hammer ‘A’ 1st Michael Painter 49.43 G1, 1.25 Discus ‘A’ 1st 41.42 G1, U15 Boys 600g Javelin ‘A’ 1st Oliver Bradfield 57.67m G1 - league record; U15 Boys 600g Javelin ‘B’ 1st James Kent 34.22 pb, U15 Girls Pole vault ‘A’ 1st Abbi Martins 2.4m, U15 Girls 100m ‘A’ 1st Clieo Stephenson 12.47s G1, 200m ‘A’ 1st 25.64s G1; U15 Girls 100m ‘B’ 2nd Vicky Mitchell 13.12s, 200m ‘B’ 1st 26.57s; U15 Girls 800m ‘A’ 1st Kiera Mooney 2:22.43; U15 Girls 75m Hurdles ‘A’ 1st Laura McDonald 11.78s G1, 3.25Kg shot ‘A’ 1st 10.02m G1, 600g Javelin G1; U15 Girls 4x100m relay 1st CoNAC Ella Stephenson, Laura McDonald, Vic Mitchell, and Clieo Stephenson 49.92s.
U13 Boys 75m hurdles ‘A’ 1st Ross Gilbert 12.13s G1- League record; U13 Boys 75m hurdles ‘B’ 2nd Marvin Iseghehi 12.53s G1, U13 Girls 150m ‘A’ 1st Elli Blunt 19.85s G1; U13 Girls 1200m ‘A’ 1st Alice Cheverton 4:05.19; U13 Girls 1200m ‘B’ 1st Megan Bird 4:18.05; U13 Girls Long jump ‘A’ 1st Jessica McNaughton 4.3m, U13 Boys 4x100m relay 1st CoNAC Toby Price, Ross Gilbert, Daniel Griffin and Marvin Iseghehi 54.04s.
This was the second of two qualifier competitions for the coverted Norfolk ESAA squad and for many the first of two back-to-back competitions over the weekend. A large number of CoNAC athletes wore the County vest, some for the first time, when on home ground the Norfolk team took on Suffolk, Cambridgeshire and Lincolnshire.
Many noticeable performances rewarded a well attended meeting, in particular:
Oliver Bradfield JB Javelin 53.63m; Michael Painter JB Discus 42.3m; Clieo Stephenson JG 100m 12.4s, JG 200m 25.6s; Vic Mitchell JG 100m 13.0s, JG 200m 26.5s' Laura McDonald JG Javelin 38.03m; Katie Vickery, Laura McDonald, Vicky Mitchell and Clieo Stephenson 1st JG 4X100m relay 50.4s; Callum Brown IB Hammer 50.53m; Ed Skinner IB Javelin 39.37m; Adam Howard IB High jump 1.75m; Iona Lake IG 1500m 4”47’.6; Juliette Broster IG 1500m 4”56’.7; Laura Green IG 8Omh 12.6s; Steph Burt IG Javelin 34.68m; Megan Thomas IG Discus 30.36m: Cloe Smith IG High jump 1.6m; Jemma Cannell IG 41.76m; Michael Fraser SB 100m 11.2s, SB 200m 22.7s; Sophie Poyner SG 100m 13.4s; Claire Pring SG 3000m 10”52’.4; Jenny Milligan SG 100mh 18.7s.
With everyone doing everything possible to secure either a national standard or qualifying standard, everyone left the Sportspark on Saturday evening knowing they had done all they could. Now it was up to the Norfolk Schools selection committee that were to meet on Sunday evening; but first the was the not-at-all small matter of the next round of the NYAL. So it was off to Croydon on the double decker coach, with little time to reflect on Saturday's events.
The club’s junior team knew when they gained promotion at the end of last summer to the Southern Premier League of the National Junior League that it would be a tough battle to survive and so it is proving to be. Now halfway through the four fixture programme it is the powerful London clubs dominating the top half of the league with the juniors in seventh position but only two points away from safety.
A trip to the Thames Valley Athletic Centre at Eton on Sunday provided some very tough competition for the team. Many of them had competed the previous day in the Norfolk Schools Track & Field Championships staged at the Sportspark so there was a touch of residual tiredness in many of the team. Nevertheless, there were some solid performances from the squad with the field event athletes putting valuable points on the board. Triple Jumper James McLachlan moved out to 14.93m a new personal best to take the runners up position in the “A” event. Harry Newenham also created a new personal best in the “A” Javelin, finishing third with an effort of 47.45m. Ed Skinner now heralded as Mr Versatility contested four events, the Hammer, Javelin, Steeplechase with his best result coming in the “A” Pole Vault when placed third with a clearance of 3.50m.
For the Ladies, Stephanie Burt was a very convincing winner in the “A” Javelin with a super throw of 37.94m. An effort of 11.54m by Sophie McKinna in the “A” Shot was good enough to place her third while in the “A” Hammer Jenna Cannell picked up valuable points when also finishing third with a throw of 42.36m. Megan Thomas was another third place finisher in the “B” Hammer when throwing 30.72. Chloe Smith’s 1.70m clearance in the “A” High Jump was good enough to put her in second place. A clearance of 1.55m in the “B” High Jump also put Holly Slater in the runners up position to add to the team’s points score.
On the track wins were at a premium with Dani Nimmock in the 3000m being the only “A” string competitor to take maximum points. Her winning time was 10min 12.77secs. James Jackson produced a new personal best time of 8min 56.03secs when crossing the line third in the “A” 3000m. In the “B” 3000m Sam Cheverton just dipped under 9 minutes for a new personal best and winning time of 8min 59.94.
A special mention must go to Michael Fraser, Jonathan Brown, De La Ray Veenendaal and James McLachlan who equalled the senior club record of 44.0secs in the 4 x 100m - an excellent performance, especially given that De La Ray and Jonathan are both still under 17's. Well done lads!
All this hard work and some solid performances mean that we finished 6th on the day and now move up to 6th place in the league standings on events points scored. With the next all-important and penultimate fixture taking place on 26 July at Norman Park it will be a case of “all hands to the pumps” in order to avert the dreaded drop out of the Premiership. There is definitely the talent within the club to achieve this but that talent must be coupled with a full turnout to give the team the best chance of survival.
CoNAC athletes produced many impressive performances at the Sportspark today in pursuit of coveted places at the English Schools AA Track & Field Championships next month.
Everyone competed very hard throughout the day for a ESAA qualification time or distance, without which a place in the Norfolk squad of only 25 places couldn’t be assured. Outstanding performances came from all areas of the club with a full copy of the results appear on the Norfolk county AAA web-site www.norfolkaaa.co.uk.
A slight head wind down the home straight shaved vital fractions of a second from the sprinters and middle distance runners times, but there was still the Anglian Schools event the following week, to claw back those all important ‘decimal places’.
In the end it proved to be a very good day for the CoNAC throwers with a considerable number of County Schools records broken.
Oliver Bradfield threw 55.52m in the javelin for the junior boys' age group (U15). Michael Painter threw 54.34m in the junior boys' hammer, as well as throwing the discus 37.56m. Laura McDonald threw 39.48m in the junior girls’ javelin (U15). Stephanie Burt threw 40.20m in the intermediate girls’ (U17) event. As well as the above, Jenna Cannell threw the hammer out to an excellent 43.28m and Callum Brown also threw well to record 50.46m. In the senior boys triple jump, James McLachlan jumped of 14.81m.
On the track, Clieo Stephenson was an impressive winner of the junior girls 100m, in 12.7s, and 200m, in 26.3s, while Laura McDonald was timed at 12.0s in the 75m hurdles.
With such fantastic results, it was a difficult choice to choose a recipient for the new George B Howard memorial trophy for the ‘outstanding field event performance’ of the meeting, but Oliver Bradfield clinched it with his throw of 55.52m.
As a result of the Norfolk Schools event, teams were selected to represent Norfolk in the Anglian School match against Suffolk, Cambridgeshire and Lincolnshire on 20 June.
Estonia here we come! Two of the club’s brightest young athletes are celebrating their selection for England at the World School Games which take place in Estonia at the end of the month.
James McLachlan has been selected to compete in the Triple Jump, an event he took up just three years ago. 2008 saw him make his mark at the English Schools T&F Championships when he finished 6th. He next success came in the UK Schools Games where he filled the silver medal position. His first international selection soon followed when making his debut for Scotland in the Celtic Games and winning with a meeting record of 14m08. This season his personal best has moved out to 14m81 and he has also recorded a massive 15m24 but sadly this effort was wind assisted so couldn’t be used for record purposes.
James Senior has been selected for the 1500m Steeplechase and / or the 800m. Last year he was undefeated in the Steeplechase being crowned English Schools and UK Schools champion. This season he has been concentrating of his “flat” speed and has to date notched up times of 1min 51.94secs for 800m, 3min 56.78secs for 1500m and 50.59scs for 400m.
The England team for the World School Games is made up of just six boys and six girls so it is a tremendous achievement to have two of the club’s athletes making the grade in this way. Well done lads!
Our senior men's season continues to improve as we recorded our second win of the year in the Southern Men's League Division 2 match on Saturday at Walton. With three matches gone and three to go we now find ourselves in fourth place overall and well placed to contest promotion to Division One as the season unfolds.
However, competition for those promotion places is sure to really hot up from this point forward so full support in the remaining three matches of the season will be vital if we are to secure our dream of promotion. So come on lads - CoNAC needs you and we need you now!!
The last day of May will not only be memorable for its glorious weather, but also for the large number of fantastic performances delivered by the young CoNAC athletes in the National Young Athletes Southern Premier Division match at the Sportspark.
However, one stunning performance stands out from the excellence that only dedication and hard work can provide - that being the awesome 75m hurdle race of Ross Gilbert. Ross's run was so outstanding that fellow team mate, Martin Iseghehi was the only other athlete to be within shouting distance of him at the finish line. With a time of 11.9s, Ross joins only one other U13 male athlete in UK history to have broken the 12s barrier. Not only did his time shatter the league and the Norfolk county record, but Ross now joins a select group at the very top of the British rankings. CoNAC is probably unique in having so many of athletes occupying the ultimate position for their respective disiplines across running, throwing and jumping.
With such collective talent across the whole club it's not surprising that other significant performances were registered right across many score-sheets, these include:
Boys - U17 1st 1500m S/Chase Ben Stratton 04:39.6 G1; U17 1st ‘A’ 5Kg Hammer Danny Clayton 46.52m; U17 1st ‘A’ 700g Javelin Ed Skinner 46.14m, 1st ‘B’ Tom Bradfield 34.53m; U17 1st ‘A’ Pole Vault Ed Skinner 3.52m; U15 1st ‘A’ 100m Tejiri Ighomereho 11.9s; U15 1st ‘A’ 1500m Tom Hook 4:26.5; U15 1st ‘A’ 80mh Steven Hadley 12.6s; U15 1st ‘A’ 4Kg Hammer Michael Painter 56.33m; U15 1st ‘A’ 1.25Kg Discus Michael Painter 38.65m G1, 1st ‘B’ Oliver Bradfield 28.23m; U15 1st ‘A’ 600g Javelin Oliver Bradfield 54.55m, 1st ‘B’ James Kent 31.23m; U13 1st ‘A’ 75mh Ross Gilbert 11.9s G1, 1st ‘B’ Martin Iseghehi 12.3s; U13 1st ‘A’ High jump Ross Gilbert 1.42m; U13 4x100m relay - 1st Toby Price, Ross Gilbert, Daniel Griffin, Marvin Iseghehi 54.7s.
Girls - U17 1st ‘A’ 1500M Juliet Broster 4:53.4, 1st ‘B’ Esme Salmon 5:10.8; U17 1st ‘A’ 80mh Laura Green 12.1s G1, 1st ‘B’ Anna Spratt 13.3s; U17 1st ‘A’ 4Kg hammer Jenna Cannell 42.51m G1, 1st ‘B’ Megan Thomas 39.52m; U17 1st ‘A’ 1Kg Discus Megan Thomas 30.99m, 1st ‘B’ Jenna Cannell 27.69m; U17 1st ‘A’ 4Kg shot Megan Thomas 8.71m, 1st ‘B’ Victoria Williamson 8.22m; U17 1st ‘A’ Long jump Sadie Miller 4.83m, 1st ‘B’ Chloe Smith 3.93m; U17 1st ‘A’ Triple jump Anna Spratt 9.25m, 1st ‘B’ Holly Slater 8.7m; U17 1st ‘A’ High jumps Chloe Smith 1.6m, 1st ‘B’ Holly Slater 1.4m; U17 1st ‘A’ Pole vault Georgina Culling 2.3m; U15 1st ‘A’ 100m Clieo Stephenson 12.5s G1, 1st ‘B’ Victoria Mitchell 12.9s; U15 1st ‘A’ 200m Victoria Mitchell 25.9s G1, 1st ‘B’ Ella Stephenson 27.0s; U15 1st ‘A’ 800m Kiera Mooney 2:21.9; U15 1st ‘A’ Pole vault Abbi Martins 2.5m; U15 1st ‘A’ Javelin Laura McDonald 39.64m G1, 1st ‘B’ Stephenie Griffin 24.24m; U15 1st ‘A’ 3.25Kg shot Laura McDonald 10.39m G1, 1st ‘B’ Stephenie Griffin 24.24m; U13 1st ‘A’ 150m Ellie Blunt 19.7m; U13 1st ‘A’ 800m Natalie Flintham 2:38.5; U13 1st ‘A’ 70mh Ellie Blunt 12.0s G1; U13 1st ‘A’ High jump Ellie Blunt 1.36m, 1st ‘B’ Lucy Cadley 1.33m; U15 4x100m relay - 1st Ella Stephenson, Katie Vickery, Vic Mitchell, Clieo Stephenson.
Final score after 82 events: - 1st Windsor, Slough, Eton and Hounslow AC 455.5 points; 2nd City of Norwich AC 450.5 points; 3rd Shaftesbury Barnet Harriers 349.0 points; 4th Medway and Maidstone AC 253.0 points.
Manchester’s Sportcity proved to be a happy hunting ground on Saturday evening for a CoNAC squad of endurance athletes. They were competing in the British Milers Club Grand Prix with the sole objective of improving their personal best times over 800m, 1500m and 5000m and were rewarded with seven new personal best times between them.
In perfect racing conditions albeit a little warm, Ashley Harrell was first away in the 5000m “C” race. He proceeded to lay down the standard of expectation for the rest of the squad when recording 14min 51.73secs, a time that improved his previous best time by a margin in excess of 68 seconds. Quite an achievement!
The club’s Irish import Tommie Carroll kept up the momentum in the 1500m “C” race when battling his way to a new personal best time of 3min 54.20secs. Luke Allen contested the 1500m “F” race and was looking to reduce his previous best for the event. He duly obliged with a commendable effort timed at 4min 02.02secs, an improvement of over 10secs. For Under 17 Girl Iona Lake the meeting was an ideal opportunity for her to make her mark over 1500m. Her aim was to attain the English Schools T&F Championships qualifying time for the distance. With her target time set at 4min 47secs she produced the best track run of her short career when completing the distance in a super 4min 37.79secs.
Ruth Senior and Hollie Rowland took on the “A” 5000m and both came away feeling very pleased with the times they achieved. It was good to see Ruth Senior produce a run that displayed her ability to compete at the highest level and happily at the same time produce a new personal best of 16min 39.49secs. Hollie Rowland never having previously broken 17 minutes for the event was delighted to come home in 16min 57.61secs a time that registered an improvement of 30 seconds.
Mitch Goose had his sights set on achieving the 5000m qualifying time of 14min 10secs, which would put him in the frame for selection for the Great Britain team to compete in the European Under 23 T&F Championships. A new personal best time was attainable and was duly achieved but there was disappointment for Goose when he fell short of his high expectations when recording 14min 18.20secs. Nevertheless it was a superb run, a new personal best by a street and he can now look forward to running even faster in the not too distant future.
James Senior was looking to consolidate his claim for a place in the Great Britain team for the World Youth T&F Championships having already achieved the 800m qualifying time of 1min 52.5secs. Despite his best efforts on the night he had to settle for 1min 52.76secs but for sure he will live to fight another day.
Copthall Barnet hosted this season's first fixture in the Southern Premier Division of the National Junior Athletic League, which proved to be a below par occasion for the club. It's clear at this early stage that unless the club turnout is at full strength then survival in the premier division this summer will be the name of the game. Late cry-offs and non-availability were numerous leaving team managers with a difficult task to plug the gaps.
At the end of a testing day the team found themselves in the lowly position of seventh, just one place from bottom. On the positive side there is scope for improvement and those who competed gave of their all for the cause and produced some good individual performances. For the ladies Stephanie Burt covered all the throws with her best result coming in the “A” string Javelin, which she won with a throw of 36m26. Dani Nimmock produced the only other “A” string victory when completing the 3000m in 10min 03.50secs. Becky Pike in the “A” 400m Hurdles clipped her personal best down to 65.22secs when finishing third.
For the Boys 6m14 was good enough for Adam Howard to take maximum points in the “B” Long Jump while in the “B” 1500m Sam Cheverton produced a lifetime best of 4min 13.23secs to secure victory.
Throughout the day points were at a premium for the club and the final team placing being 1st) Windsor, Slough Eton & Hounslow AC 484pts; 2nd) Blackheath & Bromley H&AC 480pts; 3rd) Shaftsbury Barnet Harriers 441pts; 4th) Enfield & Haringay AC 435; 5th) Woodford Green & Essex Ladies AC 412pts; 6th) Harrow AC 388pts; 7th) CITY OF NORWICH AC 378pts; 8th Team Cambridge 316pts.
CoNAC’s Laura McDonald produced a weekend of golden performances at the South of England Under 15 & Under 17 Track and Field Championships staged at Ashford.
Her tally over the two-day competition included a championship best performance, two gold medals and one bronze medal. The championship best performance and first gold medal came in the Under 15 Girls Triple Jump when Laura moved out to an impressive 11m14, twenty-four centimetres beyond the previous record. Gold medal number two came in the Javelin, perhaps her favoured event, where her winning effort was measured at 35m74. Her busy weekend concluded with 10m40 effort in the Shot, which was good enough to secure the bronze medal.
Under 15 Boy Michael Painter also had a busy weekend topped with a silver medal in the Hammer in which he produced a throw of 45m14. His effort of 10m89 in the Shot gave him a second podium place when filling the bronze medal position. In the Discus he launched a throw of 35m42, which on this occasion put him in 5th position.
On the track sprinter Clieo Stephenson worked her way through the earlier rounds to secure a place in the final of the Under 15 Girls 100m in which her time of 12.66secs, a tad short of her personal best, placed her in bronze medal position.
CoNAC’s senior track and field team were on home ground at the weekend while at the Loughborough International three of the club’s athletes were trying to impress with a view to international selection.
The Sportspark hosted the Southern Men’s Track & Field League fixture on Saturday and it proved to be a nail-biting occasion for the club. With the strong wind making conditions difficult and far from ideal for competition the day started well for the City club with wins in the “A” and “B” 100m with James McLachen and Josh Aldred taking maximum points. Josh Rea just lost out on count back in the “A” High Jump when clearing 1m70. In the javelin there was a Newenham double act with father Tim winning the “A” event with a throw of 53m03 while son Harry, on this occasion had to settle for third place in the “B” contest with an effort of 39m09. 800m and 1500m athletes Ashley Harrell and Luke Allen when doubling up proved to be too strong for the opposition to secure valuable maximum points.
At the end of day it was a close run thing for the club who managed to win the match by the small margin of two points. The final scores were 1st) CITY OF NORWICH AC 131pts; 2nd) Metropolitan Police AC 129pts; 3rd) Windsor Slough & Eton AC 112pts; 4th) Dartford Harriers 79½ pts; 5th London Heathside AC 68½ pts
Athletes competing in Sunday’s Loughborough International also had to contend with windy conditions but this did not prevent Mitch Goose from achieving a new personal best in the 3000m when recording 8min 19.82secs a time good enough to place him third. Ruth Senior went one better in the Ladies 3000m Steeplechase when finishing runner up in 10min 28.30sec while younger brother James Senior was very disappointed not to have recorded faster than 1min 55.52secs in the 800m having in his previous race over the distance achieved 1min 51.94secs.
Following the first East Anglian League match at Norwich a week earlier, the first real trial of strength of the season for CoNAC's junior track & field squad was the opening National Young Athletes League match at Woodford Green in North London.
A bright morning, albeit with a strong blustery wind which blew chairs off the top of the steep viewing embankment like tumbleweed, heralded a full day of very good competition for the team, but the wind robbed them of personal best performances. For those not familiar with the format of National Young Athletes League matches, each event is split into two streams with the combined points of both "A" and "B" results counting together on the scoresheet. Reading AC, a strong rival as always, had the advantage of sheer numbers in their squad to ensure that every last point could be soaked up, especially from athletes willing to fill a gap in an event - but more of that later. The two other teams in the match were Bedford & County AC and home team Woodford Green AC with Essex Ladies.
A number of last seasons U11’s now for the first time found themselves in the ‘big league’, but undaunted by the intense opposition these new U13’s all acquitted themselves really well. Of particular note were the performances of Ellie Blunt who completed a fantastic treble when winning the 150m in 20.5s, the 70m hurdles in 12.1s and then the high jump with 1.35m. Ross Gilbert, another talented multi-eventer, turned in a very impressive 75m hurdles time of 13.1s G1 and then went on to finish 2nd in the 100m with a time of 13.6s.
Other exceptional U13 performances came from Alice Cheverton 1st ‘A’ 1200m 4.08.8; Lucy Cadley 1st 'B' high jump 1.25m; Samuel Green 1st ‘A’ shot 7.15m; and Marvyn Iseghehi 1st "B" shot 6.8m and 1st 75m hurdles 13.5s. Last but not least, Ross McLachlan won the long jump with 4.62m.
Onto the under 15’s: Laura McDonald started her day by winning the 75m hurdles in 12.2s, nearly half a second ahead of her Reading rival. Then competing in the javelin, Laura won with 37.65m G1, despite a fierce cross wind. Lastly there was just enough time to change into her shoes to join in the last two rounds of the shot and completing her triple with 1st place and a throw of 8.89m. Clieo Stephenson although turning in two fantastic grade 1 performances in both the 100m and 200m, had to settle for two 2nd places behind Lukesha Morris from Reading, in G1 times of 12.8s and 26.0s respectively. Team mate Vicky Mitchell finished first in the ‘B’ stream of both events in 13.2s and 26.5s G1. Abi Martins, competing in the first year of NYAL U15 pole vault, took first place on countback with 2.3m.
In the U15 boys Michael Painter threw a stunning 41.94m discus throw to finish 11m ahead of his nearest rival to take first in the ‘A’ stream, a fantastic G1 throw.
Finally to the U17’s; on the track Martainn Ramsey and Ben Stratton ran side by side in the 3000m, to the point where they looked as though they would cross the line together, however Martainn managed to break the pace and finished in 9.36.8s to win with Ben finishing less than 2 seconds behind on 9.38.2s.
In the field, Callum Brown threw 46.64m in the hammer to take first place in the ‘A’ with Danny Clayton taking the ‘B’ stream with 43.58m. Danny would then turn the tables on Callum in the discus with a win of 36.56m in the ‘A’ and Callum 25.44m to take the ‘B’ stream. Danny finished his day with 11.6m in the shot to win the ‘A’ stream. Adam Howard finally taking his customary win in the long jump with 6.07m.
For the U17 girls Iona Lake won a very impressive victory in the 800m with a G1 performance of 2.16.4 and Juliet Broster picked up first place in the 1500m ‘A’ in 5.00.8s. Victoria Williamson in her first year of U17’s won a new event for her, the 300m hurdles in 47.7s. Jenna Cannell and Megan Thomas then finished off with straight wins in the hammer ‘A’ and ‘B’ stream with 35.13m and 33.9m respectively.
Lastly it was the turn of the relays to finish off proceedings for the day, with the U13 boys team consisting of Ross McLachlan, Marvyn Iseghehi, Toby Price and Ross Gilbert taking the 4x100m in a time of 55.86s.
Then the U15 boys team of Scott Greeves, Tom Hook, Sean Watson and Ben Savage ran a fantastic 4x400m to earn a well-deserved first place.
The U15 girls team, not to be outdone, changed their running order with Ella Stephenson taking first leg to Laura McDonald with Vicky Mitchell and Clieo Stephenson to finish, returning an excellent 50.74 seconds on the team's first run of the season.
A big "thank you" goes to all track & field officials who travelled with the team, all 13 of you, and special thanks to Karen Wilson for all your efforts organising CoNAC for the day.
One final note: we inevitably had a few last-minute call offs in the week before this match; this is an unavoidable hazard as we all know. However there is nothing more frustrating for a team than to find athletes actually getting all the way to the venue and then missing their event completely, or deciding they didn't fancy their track or field event at the last minute without bothering to tell anyone about it. We managed to lose a match by just one point last year, so it's absolutely crucial to do what you say you were going to do at these matches. If you do find that your events clash, then please tell your team manager immediatley so at least they have the opportunity to replace you.
Final score: Reading AC 452 points, City of Norwich AC 379 points, Bedford & County AC 340.5 points, Woodford Green with Essex Ladies 296.5 points.
City of Norwich AC's senior athletes, due to a clash of fixtures found their forces divided between the British Universities & Colleges Track & Field Championships being staged at Bedford, the Southern Men’s League that was held in Cambridge and a solo trip to Somerset.
If there were a trophy for the best individual performance of the weekend it would have gone to James Senior. Senior has set his sights on making the Great Britain team that will compete in the World Youth Championships that are to be staged in Italy in July. Already this season he has recorded 1min 53.7secs for the distance. A qualifying time of 1min 52.50secs has been set and for athletes to be considered for selection the time must be equalled or bettered. His trip to Somerset’s Millfield School on Bank Holiday Monday proved to be well worthwhile as he produced the race of his life over the two-lap distance to record a superb time of 1min 51.94secs. Team selection will take place on 20 June so Senior will be keeping his fingers crossed that his performance has been recognised by the selectors.
Competing for Loughborough in the British Universities T&F Championships over the weekend elder sister Ruth Senior returned to winning ways in the 2000m Steeplechase. Timed at 6min 49.68secs she managed to comfortably retain her title won last year. Paul Goodall was delighted to be a member of the very strong Loughborough 4 x 400m Relay squad that comfortably took the gold medal in the fast time of 3min 15.57secs. Competing for the UEA Hollie Rowland took on the 10000m and was pleased to take the bronze medal in a time of 36min 02.73secs. Mitch Goose (1500m), Ashley Harrell (3000m Steeplechase) and Dani Nimmock (5000m) all made it to their respective finals but sadly on this occasion did not medal.
In the senior men’s Southern Track & Field fixture it was a weakened team that made the trip to Cambridge so at the end of a difficult day they were pleased to come away with a mid-table finish. On the track Daryl Martin worked like a Trojan to secure points for the cause when covering five events. His best performance came in the “A” 400m Hurdles, which he won in a time of 59.2secs. Guy Amos produced a time of 15min 24.1secs for victory in the “A” 5000m. In the field events junior athlete James McLachen took the honours in the “A” Triple Jump with a fine effort of 14m27. Adam Howard, another youngster, had a busy and successful afternoon when winning the “A” High Jump with a clearance of 1m70, the “B” Long Jump with 6m32 and the “B” Triple Jump with a 12m18 effort. The overall points score was: Cambridge & Coleridge AC 123pts; Hastings AC 115pts; CITY OF NORWICH AC 108pts; Hillingdon AC 102pts; Decorum AC 79pts.
With CoNAC's first Each Anglian League match just around the corner on 19 April at Norwich, the CoNAC throws squad under the guidance of John Painter and Tim Newenham made their way to the Cambridge throws development meeting.
After the dreadful weather that greeted last year’s competitors, this year was blissful. Bright clear blue sky, sunshine and a temperature of 16° greeted the throwers for their first real trial after the long winter closed season. The mossy bog that consumed the weights last year had gone and a slight tail wind added to the expectations of the day - indeed, CoNAC would not come away disappointed.
First off was Michael Painter who threw a massive 49.46m in the hammer putting him straight in at UK No1, not content with this Michael then went on to throw 39.42m in the discus (also the current UK No1) and then 11.1m in the Shot.
Jenna Cannell then stormed the hammer with 38.16m and then followed with a discus throw of 23.23m, while Megan Thomas threw her discus 24.99m before launching the hammer to 34.37m, the third furthest throw of the day.
At the opposite end of the field it was Tim’s javelin squads turn to show what CoNAC’s new winter fitness regime could deliver. Laura McDonald took to the runway first and promptly delivered her second ever-longest throw of 38.48m, taking an early UK No1 javelin slot in the U15, U17 and U20’s rankings.
Oliver Bradfield, recently moved up to the 600g Javelin in the U15 age group, then launched a massive 55.25m throw which completely obliterated the previous county record of 49.24m which had stood since 1996 and well ahead of his UK opposition. This was followed by James Kent who turned in a new pb of 28.69m.
Stephanie Burt threw both the javelin and discus, with her javelin placing her 2nd in the U17 rankings with a throw of 38.31m and finished the day with a discus throw of 29.15m
Making a welcome return to the CoNAC ranks was Maria Cann who has taken up the javelin again after meeting up with her former throws coach Tim while bringing her children to the CoNAC Sportshall athletics sessions at Taverham High School – an excellent throw of 23.39m in the senior ladies.
Last to throw was Harry Newenham in the U20 men with a throw of 42.64m, another new pb – well done Harry!
The British Universities Indoor Track & Field Championships staged in Sheffield over the weekend proved to be a golden triumph for club athlete Rick Ward. Competing over 800m for St Mary’s University College, Twickenham, he cruised through his heat and semi-final untroubled. It was a confident Ward who stepped onto the track for Sunday’s final, a confidence that was totally justified as he produced an excellent controlled run to take his first major title in 1min 51.4secs.
Ward’s time spent at St Mary’s is going well and he is greatly benefiting from the training within a group of top-flight athletes. This will surely help him improve on outdoor best 800m of 1min 48.06sec in the summer season ahead.
Guy Amos felt like a change from road running and cross-country so took time out to don his spikes and take to the boards. Competing in the British Open Masters Indoor Track & Field Championships staged at Lee Valley at the weekend, he contested the 3,000m in which he recorded the fastest time in all categories. His winning time in the Over 45 age group was an impressive 8min 46.95secs, which was just over a second off the British record held by the evergreen Nigel Gates. Guy, while delighted with his gold medal winning performance, was a tad disappointed at missing out on creating a new British record.
In conjunction with Active Norfolk, our search for the stars of tomorrow begins on Saturday 11 April when anyone from the age of 11 upwards can come along and have a go at track & field athletics for free.
Qualified CRB-checked coaches from City of Norwich AC will be on hand at the Sportspark from 10am - 2pm to provide expert tuition in a range of events that you may not have tried before. You'll have a chance to try all the athletic disciplines - sprinting, hurdles, long jump, triple jump, high jump, hammer, discus, shot put, javelin and pole vault.
These "Search for a Star" sessions are for non-club athletes and have been designed for all ages and abilities. They're completely free of charge providing you book in advance - please click here for a booking form or send an email to Paul Evans at Active Norfolk stating your name, address, age and what you'd like to have a go at and we'll do the rest.
Track & field members of the club spread their talents far and wide over the past weekend with athletes competing in Birmingham and Sheffield.
Top spot must go to Clieo Stephenson who competed in the Aviva Under 15 England Athletics Indoor Track & Field Championships that were held in the impressive NIA Birmingham. Clieo continues to make an impression in the sprinting world and looks to have a very bright future. Competing in the 60m and 200m she was delighted to fill the bronze medal position in both events proving once again that she can mix it with the very best. In the 60m final she produced a new personal best time of 7.93secs while in the 200m she clocked a speedy 25.91secs having previously produced a personal best 25.79secs in the heat. Younger sister Ella Stephenson while not making the Under 15 60m final ran a personal best in her heat when recording 8.31secs. Victoria Mitchell was another Under 15 competitor to put together two good performances when establishing new personal best times for the 60m and 200m of 8.27secs and 27.12secs respectively. Sadly, her performances were not quite quick enough for her earn a place in the finals.
Laura McDonald was another youngster to double up in the Under 15 age group when producing a personal best 9.42sec in the 60m Hurdles in which she was placed a creditable 5th. Her effort of 9.77m in the Shot placed her 8th overall. Tyler Berry gained valuable experience in the Under 15 Boys High Jump in which he finished 5th with a clearance of 1.61m. James Senior had to produce a fast 1min 55.7sec time to make it through in the Under 20 800m then in the final had to settle for 5th place with a time of 1min 58.77sec.
Rick Ward and Rachel Stringer who last year were gold medallists in the England Athletics Under 20 800m Indoor championships have moved on and were competing over in Sheffield in the European Indoor trials. Now challenging at senior level it was a tough call for both athletes with Rick Ward just missing out on a place in the final of the 800m. However he did have the consolation of comfortably winning the “B” final in 1min 52.17secs. In his heat he recorded a speedier 1min 51.35sec. It took a time of 2min 07.57sec to guarantee Rachel Stringer a place into the final of the 800m in which she was up against a very strong field that included Jenny Meadows. Despite a season’s best time of 2min 07.15secs she, on this occasion, had to settle for 6th place.
In the world of javelin throwing, CoNAC's Oliver Bradfield is a name to keep an eye on. 13 year old Oliver, coached by Tim Newenham, currently tops the U13 UK ranking list and is also ranked No 1 in Europe with a mighty throw of 57.55m. His wonderful achievement was acknowledged at the recent Bernard Matthews Youth Awards which took place at the Norwich Playhouse. Oliver topped the pole in the Sport category and was presented with a cheque for £1,000 by ex Blue Peter presenter Konnie Huq. This award both marks his great achievement and will help him realise his tremendous potential as a javelin thrower.
UK Athletics as in common with all Olympic sports are looking to London 2012. To that end they have introduced an incentive scheme that is aimed at raising standards across the UK. The concept supported by McCain and named "Power of 10" is based on standards considered attainable by the 10th best athlete in the UK in every Olympic track and field event in age groups covering Seniors, Under 20's, Under 17's and Under 15's.
Fourteen young rising stars from the club featured in the 2008 lists. Club coach John Painter can be justifiably pleased that three of his young charges made the grade in the Under 15 Boys Hammer. Danny Clayton was ranked 2nd with a best mark of 56m71, son Michael Painter 4th with 52m14 and Callum Brown 9th with 51m06. Long Jump specialist Katherine Lake was placed 3rd in the Under 15 Girls age group with an effort of 5m67. Laura McDonald went one better being ranked 2nd in the Javelin which she moved out to 39m84. The same effort also placed her 8th in the Under 17 age group. A time of 11.37secs in the 75m Hurdles was good enough to put Victoria Williamson in 6th position.
For the Under 17's James Senior made it to the top-spot in the 1500m Steeplechase. Never defeated in this event throughout his successful season he produced a best time of 4min 25.08secs. He also achieved 6th place in the 800m when recording 1min54.72secs a time and position mirrored by his club-mate Joel Taylor. James McLachlen featured in 8th place in the Triple Jump with a fine effort of 14m08.
In the Under 20 age Rick Ward's 800m time of 1min 48.06 put him top of the ranking list and earned him a place in the GB team that competed in the World Junior Track & Field Championships. Fellow international Mitch Goose features twice. His 5000m time of 14m 43.97secs places him 4th while his 1500m time of 3min 46.26secs puts him in 5th spot. Hammer thrower Sam Coe who produced a best effort of 59m01 in the season 2008 was placed 8th.
For the Under 20 Ladies Commonwealth Youth Games silver medallist Rachel Stringer achieved 3rd place with a time of 2min05.31secs.
To feature fourteen athletes in the "power of 10" is a wonderful achievement for the club's youngsters. It is not only a testament to their disciplined approach to their chosen event but also to the coaching staff who stand out in all weathers, week after week, month after month to make sure the youngsters in their charge are able to achieve at the highest level.
The first of the major indoor track and field meeting took place over the weekend for which a small squad of City of Norwich AC athletes travelled to the Lee Valley Athletic Centre to compete in the South of England Championships.
Perhaps, in young Clieo Stephenson the City club have a sprint star of the future. Over the two-day meeting she competed six times travelling home late Sunday evening with a tally of two silver medals won in the Under 15 Girls 200m and 50m Sprint.
She confidently negotiated the heats and semi in Saturday's 200m Sprint to line up for the final in which she launched herself from the blocks to secure an impressive silver medal in a new personal best time of 26.16secs. Fellow finalised and club mate Victoria Mitchell finished in 6th place in time of 27.23sec.
Sunday saw Clieo once again safely negotiate her heat and semi of the 60m Sprint to take her place in the final knowing that she was in for a very tough race. For Clieo, 7.94secs later it was all over having created a new personal best time but in a blanket finished was just squeezed out of the gold medal by the thickness of her vest by winner Lukesha Morris (Reading AC) who recorded 7.93secs.
It was interesting to note that Clieo's younger sister Ella, using a standing-start, made it into the semi-final Under 15 Girls 60m. A first year in the age group the Stephenson sisters look set to make their mark in the world of sprinting under the guidance of their coach Mike Utting.
Victoria Williamson, having produced a fast 9.27sec time in her heat of the Under 17 Girls 60m Hurdles reproduced a similar time in the semi to secure her place in the final. Prove that it is tough in the topflight was confirmed when she was placed 6th in the final in a time of 9.41secs. As she is a first year Under 17 she should have gained a great deal from her overall performance and look forward to future with confidence.
James Senior having moved up to the Under 20 age group finished in 4th place in the final of the 1500m when timed at 4min 07.09secs a performance somewhat below his expectations but with his aspirations this year centred on the 800m it was a promising start. Rick Ward cruised through his heat of the Senior 1500m but failed to reproduce the same form in the final and finished down the field.