Better Luck Next Time …
Chris Bartram's multi-events group experienced a weekend of hopes being dashed at the English Schools Combined Events Championships held in Bedford this last weekend. At one time they looked on course to win the Senior Boys and Senior Girls titles and a medal in the Intermediate Girls. In the end only Alex Wort came away with any metal by taking creditable silver in his final age group competition.
But that doesn't come close to telling the tale of his championship. Going into it as the Indoor Champion and silver medallist at the English National Championships held earlier in the summer, he anticipated only a strong challenge from the winner of that competition and that proved to be the case; down by nearly 400 points overnight despite new PB's in the 100m (11.69s) and High Jump (1.75m) he nevertheless maintained his positive outlook by recognising that he took nearly that amount off his rival on the second day before.
The second day dawned and saw him race to a substantial benefit in the 110m Hurdles, follow that up with a new PB in the Discus (34.95m) and head for the Pole Vault with high hopes of hauling the rest of the deficit back should he manage a height around his best. Unfortunately, in the high winds he managed to produce no height and his tilt at the gold was over. He courageously performed well in the remaining javelin and 1500m events to take a creditable silver and finish his Under 20 career.
Brogan Crowley was on fire for the first day of her attempt at the Senior Girls heptathlon title producing a string of performances that left her with a remarkable points total overnight and only Danielle McGifford for company. A new personal best of 13.85s for the 100m Hurdles saw her rocket into the overall lead and beat the Championship record, a high jump performance within a centimetre of her lifetime best saw her maintain it, a new Shot Putt PB of 11.56m scored her even more points and she ended the day with another new best of 25.38s for the 200m.
Yet overnight she reacted to the days events with soreness in her ankle which the first event of the second day, the Long Jump, worsened. In pain and limited in her movements, she only managed a below par jump and was forced to recognise the obvious, that to continue competing would only worsen the damage. A disappointing end to her competition but she should take away the knowledge that she was on course for an exceptional points total above 5000, the mark of a terrific heptathlete. We all wish her well in her recovery this winter.
It was the normal tale of two different days for Marnie Wells-Nicholls in the Intermediate Girls heptathlon. A first day that included a personal best run in the 80m Hurdles (11.97s) and competitive performances in the Shot Putt, High Jump and 200m left her in fifth place overnight. But this was to prove the high watermark of her championships as she slid down the results table throughout the second day with marks in the Long Jump, Javelin and 800m that were quite good for her but at this level proved to be under par in eventually finishing twelfth.
Lynda Randles had another solid weekend of competition and proved once again to be a good County and training group team member. She produced new personal bests in the shot putt (8.95m) and the 800m (2m 44.20) achieving her new heptathlon best points total of 3467. Well done.
Overall it was frustrating that Alex and Brogan could only come so close to repeating the remarkable achievements of their training group partners from two years ago rather than emulating them although Brogan can try again next year and may have the consolation that her hurdles time qualifies for the European Juniors Championships in 2013. What they have achieved has been notable and gives them a good platform for the future. (Produced by Allan Wort)
Posted 18/09/2012 14:26