Midland League opener

The first league meeting of the season saw the Harriers perform well, taking full advantage of the home fixture and warm sunny weather to finish in a highly credible second place behand a strong Banbury AC team, with 422 points, over 100 points ahead on the nearest rivals from the new 8 team league format.


Sprint Squad


The sprinters enjoyed a good day despite dealing with slight headwinds, and there were some great performances from the squad.

Josh Gray competed in the 400m hurdles, the first event of the day.  The sole representative in the event from the club, he ran a strong race to finish 2nd in 63.90 seconds.

The 200m races were next on the timetable with 3 races for athletes to score points for the club, and a separate race for non scoring athletes.  In the women’s A race, Elizabeth Reading was in 3rd position coming off the bend and managed to maintain that position, crossing the finish line in 26.5 seconds.  The B race saw Abina Funy Soares da Gama untroubled to win in 27.7 seconds.  Culley Cleaver also had a clear run to win the C race in a personal best of 28.5 seconds.

The non scoring race was won by Abigail Akinyemi-West in 28.0 seconds, with 2nd place going to Holly Abbott in 29.2 seconds.  Personal bests were set by Tallulah Dring and Serena Warnaksulasuriya who finished 3rd and 4th in the race in 30.2 and 29.7 respectively.  Lulu Mowforth was 5th in 30.3 seconds.

The men’s 200m saw Cole Sinnott  accelerate down the home straight to hold off Caleb Coley of Coventry, winning in 22.4 seconds.  The B race was a close one with Austin Ideh just missing out on winning, finishing 2nd in 23.3 seconds.  Caleb Corstin ran in the C race, finishing 2nd in 26.7 seconds.


Cole Sinnott - Fine win in the 200m A race

Elizabeth Reading, who has put in some strong performances so far this season, finished 3rd in the women’s A 100m in 12.7 seconds.  In the B race, Abina Funy Soares da Gama ran a time of 13.4 seconds to finish 2nd, and Abigail Akinyemi-West also finished 2nd in the C race in 13.8 seconds.

Culley Cleaver won the non scoring race in 13.9, followed in by a fast finishing Holly Abbott, in 14.0 seconds.  3rd place went to Serena Warnaksulasuriya in 14.7, with Lulu Mowforth just behind her in 14.8 seconds.

Cole Sinnott had to settle for 2nd place in the men’s 100m A race, with Caleb Coley getting his revenge by winning in 11.2 seconds, to Cole’s 11.3 seconds.  In the B race, Austin Ideh pulled away from his opponents at the 70m mark to win in 11.6 seconds, while in the C race, Elijah Lawson also finished 2nd in 11.9 seconds.  Non scorer, Caleb Corstin, ran a time of 13.5 seconds in his race, finishing 5th.

The men’s 4 x 100m relay was won with ease by the quartet of Elijah Lawson, Cole Sinnott, Austin Ideh, and Lewis-Morgan Barton who equalled the club record that had been set in July, 2007.  The team look likely to lower the record as the season progresses, as some of the changeovers weren’t as slick as they could have been.

The women’s team of Culley Cleaver, Elizabeth Reading, Holly Abbott, and Abina Funy Soares da Gama initially finished 2nd in their race, but were later promoted to 1st place when the original winners, Coventry, were disqualified for a lane infringement.


Middle Distance

The small middle distance squad put in some impressive PB performances especially in the 400m where many of the athletes had opted to run under distance, with a clean sweep in both the A & B races and the non-scoring.


800m specialists U20 Alice Bennett was imperious in winning the Women’s ‘A’ race with her fastest 400m for 3 years with a fine new PB 57.7. Bennett will hope to take this form into her first BMC Grand Prix over her preferred distance of 800m the following week in Manchester.


Alice Bennett winning the 'A' 400m with her fastest time for 3 years and a new lifetime best


Not to be outdone U17 Maggie Gancheva in her first ever race over this distance, running a fine time of 62.4 to take victory the 'B' race, while U20 Alice Bates, also making her debut over 400m, opened her season with a fine 58.0 in the non-scoring match.


In the 1500m U17 Dylan Ransom sliced 13 seconds off his 1500m time with a brilliant race, sitting in for the first two laps Ransom surged past the leader on the bell lap to take the win in 4:13.1, with a third place for Ellis Johnson in the 'B' race with 4:45.9.


Dylan Ransom superb race to win in the Mens 'A' 1500m race


Evan Willis scored good points in the 'B' 800m to take second place, with Ben Brooker finishing in third place in the 'A' race.


In the men's 800m non scoring race George Separovic ran a blindingly good race to win the race and slice an incredible 27 seconds off his PB with a fine 2:07.5, while in the women’s race, Freya Allitt ran a PB to take third place in the 'B' race in 2:52.5


Well done to everyone who competed.