Three Harriers Make English Schools!

Congratulations to Emily Williams, Jack Hope & Erin Healy who all received confirmation of their call up for English Schools for the junior girls 800m, Senior Boys 2000m steeplechase & Junior girls 200m respectively.

Three Harriers Selected to run at English Schools, Emily Williams, Jack Hope & Erin Healy

The 86th ESAA Track & Field Championships will be held at Gateshead International Stadium on Friday 8th and Saturday 9th July 2016, and is considered to be the best athletic competition for U15-U20 in Athletics, so KTH is rightly proud to have three athletes selected for this premier event.

This is the first time Erin has qualified for English Schools and it’s a fantastic opportunity to savour the highest level of track & Field competition and to gain valuable experience, she has had a wonderful start to the season under the guidance of new Coach Antoinette Innis-Haycox (Ann), hitting both the 100m & 200m qualification times for English schools.

Ann was a hugely successful sprinter in her youth winning 10 consecutive County 100m titles and 9 consecutive 200m titles, earning International call ups representing the East Midlands. was coached by Geoff Munns who was the most successful sprint coach in the County. His squad contained athletes who achieved County, Midlands, English Schools, and international success, and she hopes to be able to emulate this success.

She joined the Harriers coaching staff in the winter of 2015 and states that “This one of the most rewarding things I have done in my life. The squad that I have inherited are fantastic & I get great pleasure in seeing them develop, not just as athletes, but also as individuals.” She added “Most of them have played a part in helping Erin to achieve her goal of being selected, especially the boys who she has run alongside in training. I know that the whole squad will wish her well at the English Schools as they all look up to her as a role model.”

Ann is extremely proud of what Erin has achieved so far this season, “She achieved the qualifying times in both the 100m & 200m in a season that weather-wise, has, so far, not been favourable to sprinters and It is the culmination of the hard work that she did over the winter that is now beginning to pay dividends. I'm confident that this is the just the beginning of what will be a very successful season for her."

Both Emily Williams & Jack Hope from the Middle Distance Squad have competed at English Schools in previous years and they will both look to make their mark in the final on the 09th July.

Emily gained qualification in her opening 800m race of the season and has gone on to run three time under the National standard of 2:15 and her PB of 2:12.23 ranks her 3rd in the UK. She made the Junior Girls 800m final at the first attempt in 2015 and finished as a bottom year athlete in 7th place, so she will be looking to hopefully improve on this. The English Schools National Cross Country Champion has been in great form, winning the prestigious Mason trophy, and setting the 5th fastest time in the UK over 1500m in recent weeks, and goes into her second successive English Schools National Championships in a buoyant mood.

Jack who competed in 2014 as an intermediate boy in the 1500m steeplechase, set the qualification time and PB of 6:09.07 in his second race of the season and he is currently ranked 7th in the UK, and with quality 2ksc races hard to come by Jack has concentrated in getting in a hard block of training in preparation for his last English Schools race before he departs into University life after the summer.

Middle Distance Coach Shane Smith said ”Both Emily & Jack have worked tremendously hard to achieve this all over the winter period in cross country and week after week in training where both have been putting in high quality sessions consistently. ” He added “Emily has grown in confidence since winning English Schools Cross Country Championship and as a top year athlete this year she has a terrific chance to make a significant impact at the track championships as well."

Sadly it was a case of so near but so far for many of the Harriers who were within touching distance of being selected but lacking the all-important qualification time, so commiserations in particular for: Jake Trent who has consistently peppered the 1:58 800m qualification time with 5 races all within a second of the time, bottom year Dylan Bowley who is less than 2 seconds from the JB 1500m time, as is Ella Palmer with the SG 800m time and Claudia Nevett who is just 4 seconds from the 3,000m qualification time. All 4 athletes will still have opportunities in the coming years, and can now concentrate on competitions/ races later in the season.

We wish all Emily, Jack & Erin the very best of luck on 08th & 09th of July.