Jun & Jul 2002

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Last updated 30 July 2002

Press Releases for June & July 2002

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30 July 2002

Athletes from Blackheath Harriers, Bromley enjoyed success across the age groups last weekend in individual, team and representative competition.

In the Southern Women's League Division Two match at Chelmsford the Club moved another step closer to promotion scoring their highest ever points score of 245.5, despite being without some of their leading athletes. They remain in 3rd in the 25 strong division with the top 5 teams getting promotion.

As well as winning the 100 hurdles and 400 hurdles, Katy Porter improved the Club senior pole vault record to 2.10 and was also in the 4x100 team with Katy Benneworth, Louisa Guthrie and Sam Singer which equalled the Club Record of 48.7.

Benneworth received the "Athlete of the match" award for the seniors with wins in the long jump and 100 and 100 hurdles B strings plus a new personal best in the hammer. Flo Clark picked up the award in the under 15's age group with a fine new best of 27.99 in the discus, another win in the shot and a 2nd in the B javelin. Among the seniors other A string wins from Sam Singer (400), Jennie Butler (1500), and Sandara Alaneme (high jump and triple jump).

In the under 15's there were double A string wins for Joanna South in the 100 and 200 and for Clare Cooper in the long jump and 75 hurdles.

The Junior men's team look set to take a place in the National Junior Athletics League Final after a 4th place in the Southern Premier Division match at Croydon. They remain 4th in the 8 team division with the top four progressing to the National Final in September. Best performances came in the field where Tom Robinson soared over 3.80 to win the pole vault and Karim Chester threw 55.12 for 2nd in the hammer. He also set a new best of 40.53 in the discus and was 2nd in the shot.

Elsewhere in the field the Shelley brothers Robin and Philip scored 2nd places in the B string shot, discus and javelin events with Robin 5th in the A javelin. On the track good points were scored by 2nd claim members Stuart Wendon and James Connor who are first claim Kent AC. Wendon was 3rd in a very competitive 400 in 50.4 while Connor was 3rd in the 1500 in 4.19.0. Ian Allerton won the B 400 in 50.0 and Fabian Collymore, Dwayne Bovell and Neil Simpson picked up useful points in the sprints.

Meanwhile at Kingston 7 of the Club's youngsters were in action for Kent in a 14 team Under 13's Inter Counties event. Both Serita Solomon and Sophie Robinson achieved personal bests in the 70 metre hurdles. Solomon clocked 11.90 for 5th in the A race with Robinson 1st in the B string in 12.16. Along with Emily Godley they were part of the 4x100 team which came 2nd. Other wins came from Rebecca Taylor in the 800 in 2.27.5 and Shaunagh Brown in the shot with an 8.88 putt. James Alaka finished 2nd in the 100 in 12.8 and it was 2nd also for Emily Godley with a 4.53 leap in the long jump. Emma Mason was 7th in the B javelin with 16.72.

At the other end of the age range the Club's veterans were in medal winning form in the British Championships at Copthall. National Record Holder Allan Williams won the over 40's pole vault with a leap of 4.20 while Bill Foster was victorious in the 5,000 in 15.16. In the over 50's Bob Minting struck silver in the 800 with Ken Daniel third in the 1500. Jim Day had his customary busy day in the over 65's events. He won the pole vault in 2.70, placed 2nd in the 100 hurdles in 20.2 and completed the full set of medals with a 3rd in the high jump with a leap of 1.24. Colin Brand won the discus in the same age group and silver in the javelin. The Club welcomes new members of all ages and abilities. For further information please contact Dave Liston on 01322 663504.

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23 July 2002

On a busy weekend of athletics all four of Blackheath Harriers, Bromley's Commonwealth Games representatives were in action before heading to Manchester this week.

Daniel Plummer won the 100 metres in 10.48 at the Norwich Union Great Britain Under 23's verses Germany match at Newport. He is in the England 4x100 team for the Commonwealths.

Also competing for Britain in Wales was Alloy Wilson who was third in the 400 in a useful 48.21. Wilson was back in action the next day in the first ever joint scoring men and women's Golden Jubilee Cup Semi Final match at Copthall finishing 3rd in the 400 in 48.9 and contributing a 48.4 relay leg.

Mensah Elliott warmed up for the Commonwealths with a 14.0 win in the 110 hurdles while Club 400 metre record holder Tawanda Chiwira impressed in the 200 winning in 21.3. He represents Zimbabwe in the 200 and 4x400 at the Games and contributed to both of the Club's winning 4x100 and 4x400 teams. Slick baton changes between Chiwira, Gavin Neblett, Fabian Collymore and Elliott saw the sprint relay team home by nearly a second.

Ever reliable Ian Allerton led off the 4x400 team with a 50.8; and Michael Champion (49.1), Chiwira (46.5) and Wilson left the team over 6 seconds clear by the finish. Disaster struck in the long jump, however, where Mark Awanah had to withdraw from the competition in the second round. The 19 year old injured his back and now faces a race against time to be fit for the Commonwealths.

Other wins for the Club came from Michael Skinner in the 1500 and from Nange Ursell in the 400 hurdles, but perhaps the outstanding performance of the day came from the oldest man in the team. 49 year old Allan Williams soared over 4 metres 42 centimetres in the pole vault to set a new British Over 45's record, a performance that place him second in the match.

Katy Benneworth set a new best of 10.22 in the triple jump and finished as runner up to Yamile Aldama the 1999 world silver medallist who competes for Shaftesbury Barnet Harriers. She was also just off her best in the long jump with a leap of 5.56 for third place.

Other personal bests came from Hannah Leach in the 3,000 with a time of 10.21.8 and from Peter Tucker in the 5000 in 15.30.2. Runners up spots went to Sam Singer in the 400, Katy Porter in the 100 hurdles and to the 4x400 team of Singer, Louisa Guthrie, Eve Bugler and Karyn O'Mahoney. Porter also took 3rd in both the 400 hurdles and pole vault while Guthrie ran a useful 25.9 in the 200 metres.

It was also pleasing to see Alexis Sharp back in action after two years out with injury. He was 3rd in the discus with 43 metres and Spencer Newport continued his comeback with 2nd in the 10,000.

All these performances gave the Club an excellent third place just behind Newham And Essex Beagles with winners Shaftesbury Barnet Harriers.

One man who opted out of the Commonwealth Games is British number one at the marathon Mark Steinle. He is concentrating his efforts on a big city marathon this Autumn and showed preparations are going well as he won the British Golden Jubilee 10km race in London. He was pushed all the way, however, just outdipping South Africa's Neo Molema on the line.

Two more Club members were away on International duty. On Friday Dwayne Grant was in Dublin as part of an England team against Ireland, Wales, South Africa and Australia. He finished 2nd in the 200 A race in the 21.10. He then moved on to Bangor for the North Downs International Games finishing 4th in the 200 in 20.88.

Sandra Alaneme made her International debut in the Home Countries Schools International at Glasgow. She didn't disappoint as she won the triple jump with a leap of 11.93 to further improve her Club under 17 and under 20 record.

Another Club Record was set at the Young Athletes League match for girls at Crawley. In the under 13's age group Rebecca Taylor took over 5 seconds off her 1200 metres record timing 3.56.0. The Club were the strongest of all 8 teams in this age group with a string of individual victories and personal bests. Bianca Gibbons 2.37.5 to win the B 800 proved faster than the winning time in the A race in only her second attempt at the distance. Serita Solomom and Sophie Robinson clocked impressive times of 12.3 and 12.6 to win both sprint hurdles races while Emily Godley was again victorious in the long jump with Amara Tait 2nd in the B string in 3.94. In the under 15's Clare Cooper showed she is getting back to her best form after injury winning the 75 hurdles in 11.6 as well as the long jump with a leap of 4.92.

It wasn't all about individual success as the spirit in the under 17's age group showed. While Harriet Robinson excelled with wins and new bests of 11.7 and 45.7 in the 80 and 300 hurdles a small group of girls made up for a depleted team by rushing around to cover events which ultimately helped to achieve the Club's excellent 5th position. Full credit then should go to Michelle Delahoy, Caroline McQuillan, Jenny McCaffrey, Clare Silvester and A Richards for their efforts for the team. The boys were in action at Woodford where they finished in third position. Further details next week.

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16 July 2002

Athletes from Blackheath Harriers, Bromley featured prominently at Norwich Union European Trials and AAA's Championships in Birmingham with Mark Awanah the highest placed with a bronze in the long jump. The 19 year old who represents England at the Commonwealth Games later this month leapt 7.46 in the first round but after that did not record a mark as he strove to find the big leap that would take him ahead of British record holder Chris Tomlinson and eventaul winner Darren Ritchie.

Levi Edwards finished in 5th place with a seasons best of 7.03. There was a seasons best also for Mensah Elliott who was 4th in the 110 hurdles in 13.85 and it was fourth also for Dwayne Grant who clocked 20.60 in the 200 with Clubmate and Commonwealth champion Julian Golding just one hundredth of a second behind in 5th. Daniel Plummer finished in 6th placed in a highly competitive 100 metre final and was rewarded for his efforts with a new best of 10.33.

Michael Skinner timed a swift 3.44.50 in the 1500 metre heats and was just a fraction slower in the final where he finished in 11th place. David Moulton just missed out on a place in the 800 final timing 1.52.93 in his heat. Likewise Nange Ursell in the 400 hurdles and Alloy Wilson did not progress beyond the heats.

Meanwhile many of the Club's youngsters were in action in the English Schools Championships in Nottingham. Best performance here came from Sandra Alaneme who won the Intermediate Girl's triple jump title with a leap of 11.87 which was not only a personal best but also a Club under 17 and under 20 record. As a result she has been chosen to represent England at the Home Countries International in Glasgow this weekend.

There was gold also for Adai Monnerville who was part of the London Junior Boy's 4x100 winning team. Katy Benneworth took third in a strong long jump competition by the narrowest of margins. She leapt 5.55 just one centimetre ahead of fourth place. Missing out on medals, however were Karim Chester and Stuart Harvey. Chester was 4th in the Senior Boy's Hammer with 53.84 but his preparations for the competition were thrown into chaos when he was hit by a car on a zebra crossing at a motorway service station on the journey to Nottingham. Harvey was also one place off bronze with 50.01 in the Junior Boys Javelin.

Other performances in the Seniors included Emily Oliver (5th hammer 41.77), Terry Hawkey (7th 1500) and Neil Simpson (7th 200). Anita Oliver was 17th in the Intermediate Girls discus while Dwayne Bovell timed 11.21 in the heats of the 100; and Harriet Robinson 12.2 in the 80 hurdles.

In the Junior events there was a fine new best of 52.46 from Dominic Parsons in the 400 semi final and he went on to claim 4th in the final. Alistair Tawanaee was 6th in the hammer with 45.31 with Victoria Thomas 10th in the discus.

Parsons, Harvey and Tawanaee were in action again the following day at the final Kent Boys And Colts match of the season at Erith. The Club finished as overall winners and Parsons received the award for the track performance of the season for his effort in the 400. He won the 110, 200 and 400 on the day and there were other wins from Alex Al Ameen ( 80 hurdles), James Paule (1500), Harvey (javelin) and Tawanaee (shot).

There were wins for both the Senior Men's B and C teams in the double Southern League match at Norman Park. The Division Two team now lie in 3rd place in the 25 strong division with one match remaining while the C team lie in 4th in Division Four East.

Five Club members have been selected for the Great Britain team for the Under 23 international match against Germany in Newport this weekend. Mark Awanah is picked for the long jump along with Daniel Plummer (100), Jonathan Barbour and Dwayne Grant (4x100) and Alloy Wilson (4x400).

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9 July 2002

Mark Awanah is the third athlete from Blackheath Harriers, Bromley to be selected for the England team for the Commonwealth Games in Manchester. The 19 year old was third in the long jump in the Trials and has been called up to the squad following the withdrawal of Birchfield's Jonathan Moore.

He was in action last weekend at the second British Athletics League Division Two match at Wigan, but his win in the long jump in 7.25 and second place in the triple jump with 14.59 was not enough to help the team finish any better than 5th equal position. The result means that at the half way stage, the team remains in 5th position with a slim chance of promotion but a danger that if they slip up in the remaining fixtures that they could fill one of the two relegation places in the 8 team division.

Awanah was not the only winner. "Fresh" from winning in the British League Grand Prix the day before in Birmingham the previous day, captain and fellow Commonwealth Games representative Mensah Elliott took the 110 hurdles race before achieving third and fifth places in the B 200 and shot respectively. He was also part of the 4x100 team which finished in 4th and included excellent legs from youngsters and first team debutants Dwayne Bovell and Fabian Collymore. Tyrone Swaray anchored the team home, having earlier been disqualified for two false starts in the 100.

There was a major breakthrough for Nange Ursell in the 400 hurdles. He timed his race perfectly to win in a new best of 51.5 secs which would have ranked him in the top ten in the country last year.

Spencer Newport returned to winning form in the 5,000 coming home in 14.36.2. Elsewhere on the track Alloy Wilson ran a seasons best of 48.1 for fourth in the 400 having earlier won the B string 100, and Michael Skinner and David Moulton both came close to winning the A and B string 800 metres. In the pole vault 49 year old Allan Williams was within a whisker of breaking the UK over 45's record as he just failed in his clearance at 4.42. He had to settle for 4.20, a highly creditable performance as his trip north the previous day had turned into a marathon when his car broke down on the drive up from Portsmouth. He also had to perform DIY dentistry on himself, supergluing part of his tooth back in his mouth having broken it off by bashing himself with his pole.

The women's team moved into one of the five promotion places in Southern League Division Two after their biggest ever points win at Norman Park. They amassed 240 points over 70 more than second placed Colchester. Best performance came from Emily Oliver who further improved here Club senior and junior hammer record to 43.58 while Katy Porter, better known as a hurdler, equalled the pole vault record with a clearance of 2 metres.

Senior athlete of the match award went to Harriet Robinson for her wins in the 80 and 300 hurdles and B long jump, while the under 15's award went to Joanna South who set new bests of 13.1 and 26.9 in the 100 and 200. In the senior age group, the Club had double victories in numerous events including Katy Benneworth and Robinson in the long jump; Emily and Anita Oliver in the discus; Louisa Guthrie and Benneworth in the 100;Jennie Butler and Hannah Leach in the 3,000; Porter and Benneworth in the 100 hurdles; and Eve Bugler and Hazel Barker in the 1500.

Elsewhere there were wins for Sam Singer in the 400; Guthrie in the 200; and Sandra Alaneme in the high jump. For the under 15's Clare Cooper returned to action after injury to win the 75 hurdles in 12.1 and Nina Akif made it maximum points in the B string. Bryony Proctor and Rachel Stokes had a double victory in the 1500 and there were also wins for Victoria Thomas in the shot and Rebecca Taylor in the 800, while Laurelle Barry produced a promising debut in the 100 and 200 with two 2nd places.

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2 July 2002

Forgotten man of British sprinting Julian Golding showed that he is starting to regain the form which has made a him a regular British International in recent years. The reigning Commonwealth Games 200 metre champion was unable to compete in the Trials two weeks ago as he was not fully fit following injury. However last week the Blackheath Harriers, Bromley athlete travelled to Italy and in a meeting at Celle Ligure timed a useful 21.02 for 200 beating Graham Beasley one of the athletes who has been selected for the England 4x100 team for this years Games. "I'm gutted that I am unable to defend my Commonwealth title" said the 27 year old, "but I've got a gold medal from 1998 that no one can take away from me". He will now make a bid for selection for the British team for the European Championships with the Trials taking place in Birmingham in two weeks time.

One Blackheath sprinter who is going to the Games is Daniel Plummer. He is in the England 4x100 squad and he continued to show good form timing 10.36 for 3rd in the 100 metre B race at the Norwich Union Classic Meeting at Sheffield. He also ran first leg for the England 4x100 team which finished 3rd.

There was more success at the AAA's Under 20 and Under 23 Championships at Bedford. Mark Awanah's first competition this year was against Chris Tomlinson in America in April where Tomlinson broke the British long jump record. At Bedford Awanah took the Under 23 long jump title with a leap of 7.60 just one centimetre off Tomlinson's Championship record.

Dwayne Grant was disappointed to finish second in the 200 metres timing 21.15 but Alloy Wilson was delighted with his return to form claiming silver in the 400 metres. Likewise David Moulton was thrilled to make it a hat trick of runners up spots in a tactical 800 metres with a time of 1.55.76.

Levi Edwards jumped 6.94 in the long jump and Samantha Singer finished 5th in the 400 metres. In the under 20's age group Karim Chester threw a promising 57.89 in the hammer to take 4th place. This was the first time a Club member has used the new 6kg specification junior hammer so his distance is an inaugural Club Record.

Training partner Emily Oliver was in Club Record breaking form at the Club Championships at Norman Park the previous Monday. The Mike Davies coached athlete broke both the Senior and Under 20's records with a throw of 43.22. Peter Tucker completed a hat trick of victories winning the 3000 metres to follow wins in the 5,000 and mile.

Jennie Butler won the women's 3,000 in a new best of 10.16.6; Steve Cooper took his 5th successive 800 metre title; and Michael Champion regained his 200 metre title timing 22.3.

The Club's girls finished another good 5th in the latest Young Athletes League match at Haringey and are 5th overall in the League. With a number of athletes unavailable the team worked hard for their points. Rebecca Taylor continued her systematic revision of the Club Under 13's middle distance records. Having already annexed the 800 and 1,000 records this year she slashed over 16 seconds off the 1200 metre best to win in 4.01.9 before claiming a fourth place in the B long jump.

In the A string debut girl Amara Tait was a revelation winning with a mighty 4.21 leap. Others to impress included Chloe Shaw and Rachel Stokes who timed 11.1 and 11.2 in the 80 metres and Ellie Wolf and Hannah Shomade who gained 2nd and 1st in the high jump. Harriet Robinson had another busy but successful day in the under 17's age group. She equalled her best of 11.9 in the 80 hurdles and timed 46.5 for the 300 hurdles. Likewise Sandra Alaneme scored vital points in the high jump, long jump and shot putt.

Venita Akpofure continued her return to form with a 12.9 100 metres while Anita Oliver and Clare Silvester made a valuable contribution in the throws.

The boys finished 3rd in their match at Tonbridge. Amir Williamson had an outstanding day setting three new bests of 46.30 in the hammer, 34.20 in the discus and 34.09 in the javelin. Sprinter Dwayne Bovell stood in in the shot and produced an excellent putt of 11.23 and Max Richardson marked his debut for the team with a 3rd in the 800.

In the under 15s there were throws wins for Stuart Harvey (javelin) and Alistair Williamson (hammer) and James Dennett threw a useful 21.78 in the B hammer. Scott Huggins cleared 2 metres in the pole vault for the first time and there were promising middle distance performances from David Fenlon, who was 2nd in the 3,000 in 10.16.1, and from James Paule, who was 1st in the 1500 in 4.37.2.

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25 June 2002

Athletes from Blackheath Harriers, Bromley excelled at the Kent Under 13 Championhips at Norman Park with the girls particularly impressive setting three new Club Records and equalling another. Shaunagh Brown's shot putt of 9.57 improved her Record by over half a metre setting a new Championship Record in the process. She then bettered her Club discus record as well with a throw of 24.20. The previous records had survived just a week.

Emily Godley came within four centimetres of a Championship record as she won the long jump with a leap of 4.72 adding 26 centimetres to the Club Record. Serita Solomon had a busy but successful afternoon. She started with a win in the 70 metre hurdles in 12.1 and then after heats and semi finals equalled the Club 100 metre record winning in 13.4. She then claimed silver in the 200 in 28.9 and, with another heat and semi here, it meant she had raced seven times in a day.

Second in the 200 was Sophie Robinson in 29.7 adding to the bronze she won in the javelin behind Emma Mason's silver. Rebecca Taylor won the 800 metres by nearly the length of the straight in 2.24.6 with Rachel Stokes battling down the straight for second place.

For the boys James Alaka showed impressive form to win the 100 metres in 13.0 and there were silvers for Edward Martin (800) and Richard Al Ameen (shot). Sam Simpson gained bronze also in the 800.

Many of these athletes have joined Blackheath via the Club's coaching programme. The current initiative is sponsored by Nike and Sportsmatch and allows the Club to sponsor the Bromley Primary Schools Cross Country and Athletics Championships. Coaching is provided for 9 and 10 year olds at Norman Park on Wednesday evenings with the aim to introduce the various disciplines in a fun environment. The Club also provides free coaching in curriculum time in 12 schools in the Borough.

The Club lie fourth in the Southern Premier Division of the National Junior League after a fifth place in the second match at Eton. The top four teams progress to the National Final in September with two matches still remaining. Best performances came in the throws where Karim Chester finished 2nd in the hammer; set a new best of 40.47 in the discus and putt the shot a useful 12.41. He was ably back by Trevenan Walther-Symons who gained 2nd in the hammer and shot and Alex Pope who was 2nd in the B string javelin, his 37.84 being the same distance as A string Robin Shelley.

Guillaume Rulens made a welcome return to competititon with a 1.75 clearance in the high jump supported by Junior League debutant Will Edet who enjoyed a successful afternoon scoring valuable points also in the 110 hurdles and as part of the 3rd placed 4x100 metre relay team.

On the track Dwayne Bovell set a new best of 11.1 in the 100 metres and Ian Allerton followed a equal best of 22.9 in the 200 with a fastest ever relay split of 49.1 in the 4x400. Tom Robinson took 2nd in the B string 400 hurdles and 5th in the A 110 hurdles despite missing the whole of winter training through injury.

Many of the Clubs youngsters had been in action the previous weeekend in the County School Championships. Highlight of the Kents at Ashford was a new Club Record of 54.27 for Stuart Harvey in the Junior Boy's javelin, the furthest by an athlete in the country this year. Alistair Tawanaee continues to progress setting a new Championship best performance of 46.70 in the hammer. In the Intermediate Boys competition there were wins for Dwayne Bovell (100), Andrew Johnson (100 hurdles) and Amir Williamson (hammer).

For the girls there was a win in the long jump for Sandra Alaneme with 5.25 and silvers for Anita Oliver in the discus and Clare Silvester in the javelin. In the Juniors there were 3rd places for Catherine Drozd (100), Joanne Wood (75 hurdles) and Sarah Wiffen (high jump).

At the London Schools at Battersea, Harriet Robinson improved her best in the intermediate 80 metre hurdles to win in 11.9 and Victoria Akpofure continued her return to fitness with 2nd in the 100. Dominic Parsons maintained his outstanding season with a win in the Junior Boys 400 in 54.7 and Adai Monerville was a promising 2nd in the 100 in 11.8.

At the British Milers Club Meeting at Solihull, Southern Champion Michael Skinner finished a good 2nd in the 1500 in 3.47.28 while super veteran Bill Foster was 5th in the B 5,000 in 15.01.43.

The Club also enjoyed success at the Orpington Road Runners 10km at Darrick Wood School. Peter Tucker, fresh from winning the Kent Track 10km Championships at Erith the previous Wednesday, won the race with Cliff Keene 3rd and John Hoy 4th.

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18 June 2002

Mensah Elliott put the disappointment of two recent disqualifications behind him to gain one of the two automatic selection places for the England team for the Commonwealth Games. Competing in the Aqua Pura Trials in Manchester he finished second in the 110 hurdles by the narrowest of margins. Damian Greaves of Newham won the race but only one hundredth of a second separated the next three runners.

At first it appeared that the Blackheath Harriers, Bromley athlete may not have got second but close scrutiny of the photofinish showed he had taken the runners up spot with the same time 0f 13.95 as third placed Dominic Girdler of Belgrave.

One of the surprise packages of the Trials was Mark Awanah. Facing three athletes who have jumped further than 8 metres he soared out to a new best of 7.70 in the long jump to take an unexpected third place.

Most competitive event of the weekend was the 100 metres where Daniel Plummer and Dwayne Grant both made the final and lined up against the likes of Dwain Chambers, Mark Lewis Francis, Darren Campbell and Jason Gardener. Plummer timed 10.48 for 6th, just one place behind Campbell while Grant was 8th in 10.58.

Grant did even better the following day finishing 4th in the 200 metres in 20.82. Nange Ursell and Mohammed Sillah Freckleton ran well in the heats of the 400 hurdles and 110 hurdles but did not progress to the finals.

Similarly Michael Skinner went out in the heats of the 1500 while Dave Taylor was 7th in the 10,000. All these athletes bar Taylor have progressed to Senior level via through the Club's age group teams and judging by some of the performances at the latest Kent Women's League match at Norman Park this looks set to continue.

Four new Club Records were set with the most notable coming from Rebecca Taylor. Her time of 3.07.5 in the under 13's 1,000 metres improving Gemma Viney's previous best by nearly five seconds, was a new League record; and puts her in 4th place on the United Kingdom All Time List.

Shaunagh Brown set new records with wins in the under 13's shot and discus with 8.90 and 22.04; and Clare Silvester broke the under 17's javelin record with 30.08, her first time over 30 metres. Harriet Robinson produced an outstanding leap of 5.30 in the under 17's long jump; and she also won both the 100 and 300 hurdles races. Serita Solomon was equally impressive in winning the under 13's 70 metre hurdles while Emily Godley won the long jump with 4.30. These performances helped the Club achieve their first win in the League Division One this season since their promotion last year.

Many of these athletes have joined Blackheath via the Club's coaching programme. The current initiative is sponsored by Nike and Sportsmatch and allows the Club to sponsor the Bromley Primary Schools Cross Country and Athletics Championships. Coaching is provided for 9 and 10 year olds at Norman Park on Wednesday evenings with the aim to introduce the various disciplines in a fun environment. The Club also provides free coaching in curriculum time in 12 schools in the Borough. For further details of the Club's Coaching Initiative contact Dave Liston on 01322 663504.

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11 June 2002

Halfway through the Southern League Division Two season, Blackheath Harriers, Bromley women are challenging for one of the five promotion places to Division One after a narrow victory in their latest match at Norman Park.

Having been promoted last year, their victory in the toughest match of the day leaves them in 6th place with an strong chance of going up and stay on target to achieve the goal of a place in the National League. They defeated Belgrave, third in the National Jubilee Cup Final last year, plus Chelmsford and Portsmouth who were above them in the League before the start of the meeting, and, as an added bonus, another three new Club Records were set.

First to fall was the Junior Hammer record as Emily Oliver added over three and a half metres to her previous best to record 41.60, an English Schools qualifying performance. Rebecca Taylor followed, improving her own Under 13's 800 metre record to 2.22.3, a time faster than anyone in the country last year.

The scores were close the whole afternoon and with the positions still undecided with just a handful of events left the relay squads responded in the best possible way. Keighley Douglas battled down the home straight to snatch victory for the Under 15 girls 4x100 team before the Senior quartet of Katy Porter, Katy Benneworth, Sandra Alaneme and Sam Singer smashed the Club Record with a time of 48.7.

Meanwhile the throws team of Victoria Thomas and Florence Clark were scoring maximum points in the under 15's discus and the match victory was secured. With a wealth of good performances it took some agonising to decide on the Athlete Of The Match awards but these eventually went to Nina Akif for her wins in the under 15's 75 metre hurdles and long jump, and to Emily Oliver for her performance in the Senior Hammer.

Others to impress included Sam Singer, whose 56.4 time in the 400 was a season's best; Anita Oliver, who amazed herself and the crowd with a 35.05 throw in the discus; Katy Porter and Katy Benneworth who amassed numerous points in a diverse range of events; and Florence Clark with a hat trick of victories in the B string throws for the under 15's.

The Men's B team were equally successful in their Division Two match at the same venue, with a victory that moves them up to third place. Athlete of the Match here went to Steve Harrrison who returned from a four year injury lay off to win the javelin with a throw of 63.54. He also won the shot with 68 year old Gordon Hickey second in the B competition and there was a double win in the pole vault from Simon Tolson and Tom Robinson.

On the track wins abounded with Southern 1500 metre champion Michael Skinner moving down in distance to lead the 800 metres from gun to tape. Steve Cooper took the B race in similar style and Andrew Rayner and Terry Hawkey battled down the home straight to both record 4.01.4 and gain maximum points in the 1500.

Jeremy Bradley kicked away on the last lap to win the 5,000 metres; and team managers Richard Holt and Mark Purser led by example scoring maximum points in both hurdles races as well as filling in some gaps in the field events.

There was disappointment, however, for Lash Lashore who injured his foot at the start of the 100. He finished the race in pain in 2nd place. Had he pulled up, the loss of the four points he scored would have left the Club in 2nd place at the end of the afternoon.

Down at Brighton the C team were in action in their Division Four match. After wins in the opening two fixtures they had to settle for a third place which leaves them in 4th place in the table. Amir Williamson was nominated for the Athlete of the Match award for his wins in the hammer and javelin and a third place in the discus, while Nigel Keogh and Paul Byfield competed in 17 events between them filling in where injury deprived the squad of first choice athletes.

There was another team win for the Club in the Kent Boys And Colts League at Norman Park on Sunday. The Club won the under 15's competition and were second in the under 13's to give them overall victory. Dominic Parsons timed an outstanding 53.2 to win the 400 metres in the under 15's match as well as taking the 200 metres and anchoring the 4x400 metre team to victory. In the field Stuart Harvey continued his unbeaten run in the javelin throwing 48.96. For the under 13's Sam Simpson had a gutsy win in the 800 metres.

Abroad Dwayne Grant warmed up for this weekends Commonwealth Games Trials with a win in the 200 metres at the Gouden Spike meeting in Leiden, Netherlands. His time was 21.04 and leaves the first year senior in confident mood to take on the Nations top sprinters in Manchester. He will be joined there by fellow under 23 international Daniel Plummer and the two were in relay action last week at the Bedford International Games. They were part of a Great Britain Under 23 4x100 team that included Mark Lewis Francis which timed 39.30 for second place behind the Great Britain senior team. Mensah Elliott finished second in the 110 hurdles in 13.87 to put the memory of two recent disqualifications behind him.

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5 June 2002

Blackheath Harriers, Bromley athletes experienced a mixture of highs and lows at the South Of England Championships at Watford. Three golds were won but this could have been four except for another controversial disqualification in the 110 hurdles for captain Mensah Elliott.

Daniel Plummer became the third Blackheath athlete in three successive years to win a Southern sprint title as he won the 100 metres in 10.7, the windy conditions preventing a faster time. Last years 200 metre champion Julian Golding and 2000 100 metre champion Jonathan Barbour did not take part but former Southern Indoor 60 metre champion Lash Lashore continued his return to competition reaching the semi final timing 10.7.

Also on the comeback trail was Michael Skinner who has been out of action for five months with an achilles injury. He made a quick return to winning form annexing the 1500 metres title by over a second.

Samantha Singer timed 56.52 for 7th place in the 400 metres. Nange Ursell was well beaten in the 400 hurdles by over a second but he was delighted with his time of 52.2. It was a personal best by over half a second despite the blustery conditions and his first Southern senior medal.

The Club should have been celebrating its second hurdle medal but Mensah Elliott was again controversially disqualified in the 110 hurdles for "deliberately" knocking over hurdles. Elliott was going for his 4th successive title and was left bewildered by the decision. Officials also disqualified second placer Neil Owen of Belgrave and Dwaine Stoddart of Windsor which so angered fellow hurdlers and coaches that the three "medallists" refused to be presented with their medals in protest at the judges' verdict. The rule states that athletes who deliberately knock down hurdles with a hand or foot should be disqualified. Elliott cleared the first six before knocking the last four but was adamant that this was not deliberate.

Commenting on Elliott's disqualification at the Inter Counties at Bedford the previous week Athletics Weekly stated that a video showed him "to have struck the barriers with the hamstring of his lead leg, in a style reminiscent of Allen Johnson. It could have done nothing other than slow him down." Elliott feels that the only way that the current controversy can be resolved is by a "clearer definition of what does and does not constitute hurdling."

Away from the arguments on the track Victoria Thomas made a major breakthrough in the under 15's discus. She improved her best to 30.39 to win her first Southern title and break the Club record by nearly two metres.

A second Club Record fell at the Young Athletes League for Girls match at Norwich as Sandra Alaneme again revised her under 17's shot record, putting 9.79. This was the Club's first match back in the Southern Premier Division and 6th place was an encouraging position against the top 8 teams in the South Of England. Also in the under 17's age group Harriet Robinson set new bests of 12.0 and 46.7 in the 80 hurdles and 300 hurdles; Clare Silvester took 2nd in the javelin with 29.06; Venita Akpofure picked up some useful points in the sprints; and Anita Oliver had B string victories in both the shot and javelin.

In the absence of Victoria Thomas, Florence Clark was promoted to the A string discus and responded with a new best of 24.41 for 4th place. The under 13s had an outstanding afternoon which began with Rebecca Taylor winning the 800 metres by around 70 metres. More wins followed from Serita Solomon, equalling her own Club Record of 10.4 in the 75 metres to add to a victory in the 70 metre hurdles; Emily Godley leaping 4.24 in the long jump; and Sophie Robinson making a winning debut in the 70 metre hurdles.

The Boys finished in second place in their match at Deangate. Good sprint performances came from Adai Monerville and Dwayne Lennon in the under 15's age group ensuring maximum points. Current UK number one Stuart Harvey had his customary win in the javelin and Alex Al Ameen made a promising debut in the pole vault clearing 1.60.

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