YDL (Upper) Stretford 24-07-16
There were many reasons to be cheerful at the last YDL UPPER event of the season; 40 in fact. That's the number of events won by Sale athletes. You can't do much better than win your event. There were performances which won the event in the age group above; such as Multi- eventer Grace Bower winning Long jump/javelin/ and Meg McHugh who equalled the height in the U20W HJ but came 2nd only on count back and won her u17 hurdles event.
Our Sprinters showed their quality and strength in depth with victories for Daniel Afolobi, Emmanuel Odubanjo (PB), Hayaat Bah-Traore (100/200 double) 4 x 100 relay u20 and u17, 4 x 400 u20m and u17M teams.
Rory Keen and Jacob Lingard took the victories in 400m u20M with Shaun Gee (PB) and Harry Briscoe taking the double in the u17.
Further success came in middle distance events Matt Beacock, Harry Briscoe and Luke Chesters (who went below 2.00 for the second time in a week) all had 800m wins. Richard Goddard's group provided two 1500 wins from Adam Spilsbury (SB) Aine Cunningham and a 3000 victory for Jake Spilsbury. Francesca Brint in her first 3000 of the year got herself a win and a PB.
Charlie Brett mopped up amongst some rather wet athletes getting points for their clubs in the 2000SC after gaining maximum points in the Shot. Meg Mchugh, Nahom Selemon and Ellie Jackson all were victorious over the lower barriers of the Hurdles events.
Michael Odejimi and Nathan Booth cleared their bar higher than anyone else in their respective High Jump events. Thanks to Matt Cullen we had our usual success in the Pole Vault with Matilda Wates (U17W) soaring to a PB, inspired no doubt by Zak Harrop and Lewis Hannan winning in the U20M.
Tia Blissett won her Long jump, and Triple jumpers Emmanuel Otabanjo, Michael Odejimi and Shane Connell were all victorious. Hannah Blood, who filled a few events, joined Charlie Brett in winning in the Shot. Charlie Headdak, Jonathan Adderley and Mia Davies took maximum points in the Discus. Mia along with Jamal Brown and Grace Bower won their Javelin events.
After four matches only 16 points separated Liverpool from us. As far as I know all athletes were Sale Harriers, unlike others who borrowed from nearby clubs. One team had 24 events filled by 'guests' from other clubs, which in one way is good because those athletes got to compete, but it shows what we are capable of not having to use that option.
Compared to last season there appears to have been an improvement in the places we have filled, although we could make further progress in the future. All the athletes and their coaches must be thanked for this at a time when GCSE and GCE A levels are of paramount importance for the futures of many. As a club we have seen nine years of YDL Lower championships, including years when the U17 group were part of that. It was always a greater struggle when we had to cross the border for National Junior League, then YDL Upper, with the same kids who had done YDL Lower; leave Sport City at 1.45 Saturday, return the following day at midnight. I decided to compare what our Southern and Midlands counterparts have had to travel. This year the furthest apart has been Tonbridge to Windsor at just over 50 miles- I hr 26 mins. In the Midlands Stoke to Milton Keynes 1 hr 50. Manchester to Edinburgh 3 hr 59 mins - 175 miles. Manchester to Glasgow 3 hr 30 - 185miles (must be more motorway) Liverpool would face something similar. It's no wonder things dropped off at age 17 during exam time. Not having to go such distances this year has been a blessing and it's been very close between ourselves and Liverpool for points, with other clubs providing some good strong competitors but struggling to fill places.
This club has some fantastic coaches who can improve youngsters brilliantly. So long as the talent comes in at a young age we can produce good athletes. We should rejoice in this. Few clubs can boast 800 members taking part in such a wide range of Athletics; Track and Field, Cross, fell, road,
Posted 28/07/2016 14:37