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UK Athletics

weekend round-up 

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14 March 2016 

NCAA Division 1 Indoor Championships, Birmingham, Alabama, USA, 11-12 March

World Championship 100m hurdles semi-finalist Cindy Ofili (coach: James Henry) set a British U23 best of 7.89 as she sped to her first National Collegiate indoor 60m hurdles title on Saturday. It raised the 21-year-old Woodford Green Essex Ladies athlete to third place on the UK all-time list - behind her big sister Tiffany Porter (7.80) and Olympic heptathlon champion Jess Ennis-Hill (7.87).

Ofili, who only scraped through to the final after finishing fifth in her heat in 8.10, also broke the track record figures of 7.94 held by Kristin Castlin of the US. It was her fifth lifetime best of the season. Ofili started 2016 with a PB of 8.10 but now has a trio of sub 8 second clocking’s to her name.

There was also a British victory in the men’s pole vault, Scot Jax Thoirs (Pat Licari) clearing a season’s best of 5.50m, while two Britons finished in the first four in the men’s 200m final. Nethaneel Mitchell-Blake (Dennis Shaver) was runner up in 20.63 and Sam Watts (Gladys Bird) fourth in 22.06. Watts clocked 20.68 in his heat.

In the 4x400m relay, George Caddick (Clyde Hart) ran the second quickest relay leg by a Brit Indoors as he anchiored Baylor to third at the Championships.

Shaftesbury Barnet’s Sophie Connor finished fifth in the women’s mile in 4:38.83, while in the women’s 3000m Calli Thackery (Joe Franklin) was sixth in 9:09.35. Sale’s Ben Williams (John Crotty) was seventh in the men’s triple jump with a best of 16.22m.

In NCAA Division two, Ollie Aitchison, third over 1500m at the European Team championships last summer, won the mile event in 4:12.69.



Trafford 10k, Manchester, 13 March

Tom Lancashire (Steve Vernon) led the way as 28 athletes finished inside the 30 minute mark. Lancashire, who competed for Britain in the metric mile heats at the Beijing Olympics in 2008, surged to victory in 28:56; slicing 25 seconds off the PB he has held since 2009.

The 30-year-old Bolton Harrier finished five seconds clear of Swede David Nilsson with Mohammad Abu Rezeq of Jordan. Behind them, benefitting from the bright spring conditions, there were a host of PBs from British runners Cheltenham’s Graham Rush finishing fourth in 29:10, Stockport’s Andrew Davies (Steve Vernon)  sixth in 29:13, Aldershot’s Joshua Grace  (Mick Woods) seventh in 29:14, Stockport’s Jack Morris (David Turnbull) eighth in 29:18, Derby's Richard Weir (Spencer Duval) ninth in 29:12 and Coventry Godiva’s Toby Spencer  (self-coached) tenth in 29:22.

Paralympic T12 800m and 1500m bronze medalist David Devine (Adrian Webb), who was making only his second race appearance since 2012, returned from injury to post a time of 32:23.

Juliet Potter (Roy Stowell) won the women's race in 33:50 from Kendal’s Rebecca Robinson in 34:06. Newquay’s Eleanor Davis (John Scott) was a close third in 34:13 and Laura-Jane Day (Sarah Davey) of Notts AC fourth in 34:36.



World University Cross Country Championships, Cassino, Italy, 12 March

The British women’s team performed superbly to take silver medals, packing all six members into the first 25 and their three counters into the top 12. Worcester's Jenny Nesbitt (David Walker) led the way, finishing fourth in the 6.2km race in a time of 22:05.

Wycombe’s Pippa Woollen (Luke Gunn) was sixth in 22:20, Cheltenham’s Beth Hawling (Matt Richards) 12th in 22:36, Vale Royal’s Amelia Pettit (Ian Whyte) 17th in 22:56, Bedford and County’s Rebecca Murray (Alex Stanton) 24th in 23:20 and Leicester’s Mari Smith (William Alan Winter) 25th in 23:22. Japan lifted the team trophy with 13 points, ahead of Great Britain (22) and Italy (41).

The British men finished eighth in their team section with 153 points. Alex Brecker (John Danahay) was 28th in the 10.7km race in 35:20, Dan Nash  (self-coached) 30th in 35:32, Maximilian  Nicholls  (Peter Brenchley) 47th in 36:42 and Jack Rowe (Mick Woods) 48th in 36:49. Jacob Allen (Mick Woods) and Andrew Heyes (Keith Whitelam) did not finish.



Silverstone Half Marathon, 13 March

Commonwealth bronze medallist Jade Jones (Ian Thompson) smashed her own course record in a thrilling duel with Mel Nicholls (Job King) in the women’s wheelchair race. Jones won by a second in 58:55, destroying the course record time of 62:05 that she set in the 2013 race. “I’m very happy with that time,” said the 20-year-old New Marske Harrier. “I’m still coming back from injury so it’s nice to know the training is going well.”

Six-time Paralympic gold medallist David Weir (Jenny Archer) won the men’s wheelchair race for the fifth consecutive year, leading from start to finish and crossing the line in 46:53. Charles Smith (Jenny Archer), a training partner of Weir in the Weir Archer Academy, finished second in 52”19, with Ben Rowlings (Job King) third in 56:07. This race is great for clearing out the cobwebs after a winter of training,said Weir.

Michael Aldridge (Ian Wilson) of Wooton Road Runners was the first finisher in the open half marathon, crossing the line in 73:06. The first woman home was Huncote Harrier Nicki Nealon (Nick Nealon) n 83:00.



Bath Half Marathon, 13 March

Newly crowned English cross country champion Jonny Hay (Mick Woods) continued his preparations for his debut marathon in London next month by finishing runner up in 64:53. Robert Mbithi won in a course record time, 61:44, with fellow Kenyan Gideon Kimosop third in 64:53.

Thames Valley Harrier Tracy Barlow (Nick Anderson)  was second in the women’s race, clocking 74:24 behind Kenya’s Lenah Jerotich, who triumphed in 72:24. Winchester’s Hayley Munn (Nick Anderson) finished third in 76:40.



England Athletics U17/U15 Combined Events Championships, Sheffield, 12-13 March

Manx Harrier Josh Hewett (Di Shimell) took the U17 men’s heptathlon title with a PB score of 4603 points. His individual marks were: 7.47 (60m), 6.25m (long jump), 11.51m (shot), 2.02m (high jump), 8.73 (60m hurdles), 3.22m (pole vault) and 3:04.25 (1000m). Arbroath’s Joel McFarlane (coach:unknown) took silver with 4379 and Newport Harrier Kellen Jones (Nigel Lewis) bronze with 4369.

The U17 women’s pentathlon crown went to Pippa Earley (John Shepherd) of Kingston AC who moved to fifth in the UK all-time rankings in the age-group. She scored 3811 points courtesy of individual marks of 8.72 (60m hurdles), 1.54m (high jump), 10.69 (shot), 5.79m (long jump) and 2:20.65 (800m). Holly McArthur (Iain McEwan) took silver with 3619 and Sarah Omoregie (Gareth Lease) bronze with 3605. All three were beaten on the day by Portuguese guest Marisa Vaz Carvalho, who scored 3992.

Preston Harrier Jasmine Jolly (Peter Hancock) won the U15 girls pentathlon with 3397 points which moved her up to fourth in the U15 UK all-time rankings. Additionally, Thurrock's Theo Adesine (Karl Sumun) was a convincing winner of the U15 boy’s pentathlon crown with 3029 points, missing David Guest’s ten-year-old championship record by just 58 points. However, he still went fifth in the UK U15 all-time standings.