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  • Noel Carmody

Weekly Update - 21st Dec. 2022

Dublin Grand Prix of Race Walking/World Athletics Race Walk Tour - Bronze Event

The clubs race walkers swapped a snowy and freezing cold London for damp and blustery conditions in Dublin for the Dublin Grand Prix of Race Walking which held a World Athletics Race Walk Tour - Bronze licence and took place in St. Annes Park. The WA Race Walking Tour is an annual worldwide competition series in which athletes accumulate points towards a final ranking.

In the senior men's 20km Luc Legon reduced his personal best by over two minutes crossing the line in 1:34:52. The Hopper siblings contested the junior 10km, both have had injury problems, so were a little below their best. Hannah finished in 2nd place in the junior women's race with 54:06 and younger brother Christian 3rd junior man with 52:28.

Christian Hopper - Luc Legon - Hannah Hopper

South of England Indoor Combined Events Championships, Lee Valley

Elijah Olaleye was the star of the show winning the Under 15 Boys Pentathlon by a clear margin with 2,086 points and achieving personal bests in both the high jump and shot along the way, reports Mick Bond. In the Under 17 Women’s event Gabby Noyce was 15th (2519 points) and Keziah Olaleye 18th (2367 points).

South of Thames Cross Country Championship, Aldershot

A combination of the train strike and various injuries and ailments whittled our entry down to just three this year, but the three that made it to Aldershot all thought that it was worth the trip, reports Clem Dixon. The South of the Thames Cross Country Association (to give them their full name) are well known for being decidedly old-school and entering their races normally induces a mild panic as you try to find your cheque book which you probably have not used since the last time you entered one of their races. But not this time: online entry has become available! Not only that but the metal finishing tags have been replaced by barcodes and a sponsor's name has crept onto the numbers. At £2 per runner the entry fee was still refreshingly old-school though.

It was five years since we were last at this venue and our thanks to Aldershot Farnham & District for laying out the course. Three laps totalling 7.5 miles featuring a mixture of parkland and woods with a few inclines and some steep banks run over the remains of the snow that fell a week earlier. This is where the cross country season kicks up a gear as the distances get longer and the weather, in all probability, gets worse.

Peter Chambers of Highgate was the first finisher, but as a guest runner, presumably because Highgate is North of the Thames. That left Ben Cole, one of a strong Tonbridge contingent who also lifted the team prize, to be crowned South of the Thames Champion. My general impression was that although numbers seemed down on previous years the overall quality was as high as ever. Christian Poulton had a decent run for 72nd place whereas Richard Bennett and I were happy to trundle round rather nearer the back.

Christian Poulton - Richard Bennett - Clem Dixon

Results: 72 Christian Poulton 50:03, 113 Richard Bennett 56:06, 115 Clem Dixon 58:36.

Sutcliffe 60's, Sutcliffe Park

Our first indoor 60’s meet of the winter was a sell out with 180 athletes entered, thirty-six of them from Cambridge Harriers, writes Mick Bond. With three months winter training in the bank for most, there were personal bests or near personal bests a plenty.

Top three Cambridge Harriers in the women’s event were Doyin Aderinto, continuing her great summer form setting a PB of 7.61s, rising junior star Emily Cadman (U15) who took another few 100th’s of her best in 7.88s and Mary Schouvaloff back with her first race for five years and setting a PB of 8.06s.

On the Men’s side Divine Akinlolu was fastest recording a time of 7.17s and then in equal second Shaquille Fernandez-Folkes and Tomisin Awolowo both running 7.27s.

Video of Doyin Aderinto

Big thank you to our trusty team of officials with a special mention for Chief Track Judge Jan Clifford, who recently obtained her Level 4 Officials’ qualification (as high as you can go). Jan joins two other club members at the top of the officiating tree - Christine Head-Rapson (Field) and Noel Carmody (Walks).

Jan Clifford - Pauline Boorman - Fuad Busoir - Barry Ferguson - Olu Olaleye

Jan first volunteered after noticing a poster about volunteering at the 2012 Paralympics. This led to her attending a young athletes meet at Erith Stadium where she met Gill Freeman, Kent County Officials and subsequently Barry Ferguson. Both were officiating there that day. From being an enthusiastic volunteer, Jan has acquired a wealth of experience at different competitions at local, national and international level. She now gets invites to the major championships but still finds time to help out at club events. If anyone else is interested in following in Jan’s footsteps contact Barry Ferguson –


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