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  • Barry Ferguson

European Masters Indoor Championships

Updated: Jan 12, 2021

There were five Cambridge Harriers attending the European Masters Indoor Track and Field Championships which were held in Madrid, Spain on the 19th to 24th March 2018.

Unusually cold winds and some rain were present during that week, which proved to be not ideal for the long throws and cross country athletes. Nevertheless, there were opportunities for seeing some sights in this historical city when not competing in the attractive indoor arena.

Ros Tabor had a busy time indoors. Starting with the W65 3000m, she won silver in 13:24.59s. On the second day, she dropped down to 2 laps and won bronze in the 400m 78.89s. A whole day passed before she went on to winning gold in both her favoured events the 800m in 3:08.01s and the 1500m in 6:15.41s, and on the final day she braved the outdoors to win silver in the 5K Cross Country clocking 24 min 57.

Pat Oakes (2nd claim) was 4th in the W70 60m hurdles 15.10s and won bronze in the Triple Jump 6m17.

Barry Ferguson and Ray Daniel, had their preparations curtailed leading up to the event. In addition, Ray had to recover from a fall in the snow as he was leaving home to start his journey. He ran a seasons best in the M60 800m, 2m 34.99s and Barry got silver in the M75 60m hurdles 11.77s.

Attending these championships for the first time, Matthew Preston finished 7th in the heats of the M45 800m, 2:15.88s and 3000m 10:26.42s. He found the experience most inspiring. Here are some of his thoughts from just before his first race:

When I was in the call room I felt surprisingly relaxed and ready to run. I walked out into the tunnel and up on to the track side I felt really happy and proud especially when I saw my name on the big digital time board representing Great Britain. I was in the red, blue and white GB team kit and ready to give all I had in the race.

I felt the 3000m race was a success for me. I came round the last lap able to pick up my pace for the finish line. Peter Hamilton says we always have more left than we think and this was the case.

The warm down with a new friend I met in my 3000m race was one of the best moments. Whilst chatting about the race we looked around at the snow capped mountains and Madrid city in the background. We planned an evening out in Madrid when the racing was completed. 

With the help of sports massage I was confident my legs were good for the 800m race the next morning.

The 800m tested me further and I managed to stick with some of the other faster runners from other nations for some of the race. I was pleased with my seasons best and inspired with seeing how well others do from their training and trying hard.

The trip to Madrid was inspiring and I’d like to thank Peter Hamilton hugely for all the information on training and racing along with his support and wit in Madrid. Also I’d like to say thank you very much to Glynis Penny for the Tuesday track sessions over the last three years or so I have been training on the track that I am sure helped me in the races.


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