A Rush for a place in National Team

By Alastair Aitken - 8th April 2016

On Wednesday, at the HIGHGATE HARRIERS OPEN MEETING, at Parliament Hill Fields track, there was a race to make the cut!
It was a bid by those concerned, to try and make the Highgate team for the National 12 Stage Road Relay Championships, at Sutton Park, Sutton Coldfield on Saturday (16th of April).

The six long stages are already booked for the current ‘Star’ performers in the club, but the six short stage places are also important and, will be concluded soon. The selection will be by the team manager Ben Pochee and supported by Rob Wilson, the cross country captain.

On Wednesday in the 5000m 'A' race, five Highgate Harriers ran well inside the magic sixteen minute mark, which put them in line for a possible spot on the team.
The gauntlet was thrown down and, the result of the 5000’ A’ race was, following the Blackheath & Bromley AC winner, Williams Fuller in 14:55.17; were 2nd Victor Mound 14:55.59; 3 Brahma Pochee 15:30.09; 5 Peter Hawkings 15:37.08; 6 Ben Noad 15:45.34; 8 Jon Laybourn 15:53.62. The other Highgate runners in the race were 9 Edward Hickman-Casey 16:04.01; 10 Michael Dan 16:11.28; 14 Peter Downie 16:43.99 and 17 Andrew Collins 17:47.17.
Also running in the race, as the sole woman, was Ashley Scott-Wilson, who ran so well in the Women’s winning team in the Southern road relay Championships recently. Her time on Wednesday was 16:51.36.
In the 'B' 5000m won by Pete Blackwell of London Heathside in 17:16.94, in 7th place out of the 17, was Andrea Spaccotrosi, who is a 45 year old man, ran 18:29.18.
Two Highgate women took part Esther Pigney, an Under 20, ran 20:35.69 and Lucy McGuiness, an ‘over 50’ woman did 21:00.30.

Besides, the excitement in the evening for those likely to make the Highgate team for the relay, there were other individual performances in the results and, a few will be listed, as the track season has only just begun.
In Race 2 of the 800m, Under 15 Highgate Harrier Patrick Kyle finished in third place in 2:28.79 (four days later he ran 2:20.3 at the Wimbledon Open, and also threw the javelin 27.42m in his first ever competition). Also in race 2, Emmanuel Lumineau, an over 40 runner, came 6th in 2:37.10. Two Highgate runners from the ladies section ran, Emma Williets, an under 15 did 2:37.29 and another Under 15 Girl, Ellie Gilmore, ran 2:45.75.
In Race 3 of the 800m Felix Bright was the second runner in the race in 2:54.01. He is an Under 15 boy and Milly Dunne, an Under 15 girl with Highgate was 3rd to finish, of the 7 in 2:54.43.

Race one of the 300m was won by Under 20 man, Idayah Boers, born 11th of June 1999 and, coached by Juliet Kavanagh. He was timed at 36.38 in his first track race of the year. Senior, Pete Edmunds, was 3rd 39.30, another senior Stephen Kelly ran 39.49 and Dominic Ogbechie, an Under 15 ran 40.05 but one must remember he has a high jump club record for his age group this season already indoors.
Race 2 over 300 saw Zak Kurtulus, an under 20 man, won in 41.65 but following him in was prolific Southern League points scorer and senior woman Alima Diabate, in 44.18 with Amy Rutherford next in 47.97.

In the 100m Race 1 the frist Highgate runner, in second place was N’Tula Leonaardo in 12.17. The under 17 boy, was just ahead of Peter Edmunds who ran 12.2.
Tyreece Rankin (Under 15) of Highgate looked impressive yet again with 1st place in Race 2 in 13.18 with Michael Slavinsky, a senior man next in 13.51 and Dominic Ogbechie 3rd in 13.52.
Highgate under 15 girls Katie Nyarko was 3rd in race 4 in 14.99 She is Under 15 and was 2nd Under 15 in the race.

In Race 1 of the Under 11, 75 metre races was won by Mathew Walker in 12.00 and in 2nd place was Remy Weinbrecht in 12.5
In race 3 Inshi Naarko was 2nd in 13.4 but was the first Under 11 girl in the race.

Field eventers are always worth spotting, as often Highgate Harriers is light on field events people and they are of vital importance in the Southern League matches.
Tony Richards, an ‘Over 65’ field events exponent won the Discus outright with 35.69 and James Rossiter (M45) threw 28.08 and Lucien Brear, a senior woman threw 19.02.
Tony Richards and James Rossiter were back doing the shot and Richards was 2nd with 9.67 and Rossiter 3rd with 8.81

Several Under 11’s did well in the field events, who ran with some good performances on the track and that include Mathew Walker who did 3.66 in the long jump ahead of Remy Wienbrecht, who recorded a leap of 3.80. 3rd but first girl out of the field of 12 was Nikita Crabb with 3.47m

In the Under 11’ 600m Jack Bailey (under 13), one of the sons of stalwart competitor for the club, Chris Bailey won in race 1 in the 600 in 2:03.6. The other 9 competitors were under 11 and in 2nd place was Remy Weinbrecht in 2:06.8. The first girl was Inshi Nyarko in 2:21.6.
In Race 2 of the 600m Under 11, in 3rd place was Under 11 boy, Ejike Ochel-Okpara in 2:26.9 and, the first girl finishing the race one 3rd overall was Thea Reinhardt in 2:29.5.

Alastair Aitken

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