Lower Youth Development League - 17/7/2021

18 July 2021

The 2nd lower age group Youth Development League took place in very hot conditions at blackbridge stadium in Gloucester. A large team of Harriers attended with a huge number of athletes making event debuts and almost every athlete competing in more than one event. Our athletes were willing to step into events they don’t normally compete in and did so to the best of their abilities. The team demonstrated amazing team spirit and supported one another throughout the day and it shows in the results. Overall the team won by an incredible 297 points from 2nd place. A huge well done to all the athletes who all did the club proud. 

Starting with the U15 boys events, we had 8 Harriers competing throughout the day. In the 300m we had wins in the A and B string through Oliver Belbeck with 41.1 and Oliver Bevan-Langlois in 47.5. Othniel Harris and Joseph Abbey produced PBs over 200m in 25.6 and 29.7 respectively for 2nd in the A and B string. Bevan-Langlois also competed over 100m running well to finish 3rd in 13.7. Dominic Martin ran below 2:20 for the first time in the 800m with an impressive 2:17.3 for 2nd in the A race, while Sam Wilson ran 2:26.8 to win the B race. Making his 1500m debut, Joseph Abbey ran well in the heat to finish 2nd in 5:42.5. Belbeck and Bevan-Langlois returned for the long jump where Belbeck took 1st place in the A competition with a best of 4.78, just 1cm below his PB, and Bevan-Langlois was 2nd in the B competition with a best of 3.17. There was a double victory in the high jump with Harris jumping 1.5 and Charlie Mason 1.35. Making it three wins out of three events Belbeck also competed in the discus and threw a PB of 22.88. Wilson took the B event win with a throw of 14.29. Finally, in the Javelin, Mason and Martin threw well to win the A and B competitions in 38.15 and 8.39 respectively.  

U15 girl, Cara Walsh was on fire with victories in both the 100m and 200m. Walsh flew to a 0.2 second PB in the 100m crossing the line in 13.4 and appeared to be a class apart in the 200m winning by 1.4 seconds and taking a huge 1.2 seconds off her previous best to win in 28.0. Walsh was supported brilliantly by her teammates, Flora Hopcraft and Senni Ho, who both took the win in the B race. Hopcraft equalled her 100m PB of 14.5 and Senni Ho ran 29.5 in the 200. We also had two athletes compete as guests over 100m, Esme Rolfe ran a PB of 14.8 and Senni Ho ran 15.1. Isobel Burfit and Matilda Barter ran superbly in the 300m, Burfitt lowered her PB by 0.41 seconds to finish 2nd A athlete in 47.9 and Barter ran 47.5 to win the B race. Competing in the 800m for the first time Kate Mills ran a controlled race to finish 2nd in 2:42.2 and in the 1500m Abigail Thornley was also 2nd in a SB of 5:27.6. The long jump saw Barter and Burfitt return and both athletes produced impressive PBs. Barter improved her best by 0.25m to come 3rd in the A event with 4.24m and Burfitt added 0.13m to her best to take B victory with 4.20m. Having competed in the shorter sprint events Rolfe and Ho returned to compete in the high jump. In the A high jump Rolfe cleared a PB of 1.35 for 2nd and in the B high jump Ho jumped 1.25 for 1st. Tilly Coley was a brilliant addition to the team impressing in  the throwing events. Coley won the A shot and discus with bests of 7.11 and 18.14 and took 3rd in the A javelin with 15.67. Rolfe won the B shot put with 5.14, Kitty Ellis won the B discus with 15.88 and Mills was 2nd in the B javelin with 14.62. Although a distance specialist Thornley enjoyed a rare appearance in the field with a win in the hammer with a throw of 15.30.

Moving down in age to the U13 age group it was great to see so many athletes competing for the first time ever. Starting with the distance events Caleb Green won the A 800m in 2:44.9 and Tommy Hewitt-Dyke was 3rd in the B race with 2:56.5. The 1200m saw Eddie Atkins and Bertie Travis take on the heat, with Atkins running well for 2nd in the A race with 4:26.8 and Travis winning the B race in 4:39.7. Benjamin Parker and Robin Nishimura competed in the A and B 75m respectively with Parker finishing 2nd in 10.9 and Nishimura running a PB of 11.6 for 3rd.  Atkins also took part in the 150m where he ran well in the A race to finish 2nd in 23.3. Fred Buckland competed in the B 150m where he finished 4th in 23.4. Parker and Travis also competed over 75m hurdles, Parker finished 3rd in 16.0 and Travis was 4th in 17.2 in the A and B races. Our athletes returned in the field events with Green (4.39) and Hewitt-Dyke (3.59) finishing 2nd in the A long jump and 3rd in the B long jump. Travis (1.2) and Nishimura (1.2) took part in the high jump taking 3rd A and 2nd B. Atkins (5.57) and Buckland (5.12) were our shot putters and did well to come 3rd A and 1st B. In the javelin, Parker (18.88) and Nishimura (9.87) both finished 2nd in the two strings.   

Despite only 7 U13 girls travelling to Gloucester, they all threw themselves into the day, competing in multiple events and managing to leave very few events unattended. Josie Steer had a brilliant day from start to finish taking a hat-trick of A string victories. Steer ran 2:40.2 in the 800m, jumped 1.3m in the high jump and arguably the most impressive of all, Steer jumped a huge PB of 4.40m in the long jump. The jump improved her previous PB by 1.4m and took her into the top 20 in the UK rankings. Ava Mitchell competed in the A 75m and B long jump achieving big PBs in both. Mitchell finished 3rd running 11.0 to take 0.54 seconds off her previous bet in the 75m and was also 3rd in the long jump with a 0.25m PB of 3.30. Daisy Hopcraft was our B 75m athlete and ran well to come 2nd in 11.5. Charlotte Buckley put together 3 great performances competing in a range of events. Buckley ran 24.0 for 5th in the A 150m, jumped 1.15 for 2nd in the B high jump and threw 5.59 to win the B shot put. Evie Avery made a big jump in the 800m taking 8.8 seconds of her PB to run 2:47.9 for 3rd in the B race. Avery also competed in the javelin where she won the B string with 7.61. Olivia Avery was also in PB form, she took the win in the 1200m finishing in 4:23.1, 21 seconds clear of 2nd place. Our 6th athlete was Jessica Asquith who competed exceptionally in the A 70m hurdles, shot put and javelin where she finished 2nd in all three. Asquith ran 13.3 in the hurdles, and threw 6.17 and 14.55 in the shot and javelin respectively. 

Having already demonstrated superb team work throughout the day it was no surprise they came together so harmoniously for the relays to take three 1st places and two 2nd places. The U15 girls 4x300m team of Isobel Burfitt, Kate Mills, Tilly Coley and Abigail Thornley held off a strong Gloucester team to win in 3:23.2. Caleb Green, Fred Buckland, Bertie Travis and Benjamin Parker combined to win the U13 boys 4x100m in 59.8 and Jessica Asquith, Evie Avery, Josie Steer and Ava Mitchell took victory in the U13 girls 4x100m in 59.0. Our U15 4x100m teams were a close 2nd with Dominic Martin, Othniel Harris,Oliver Bevan-Langlois and Oliver Belbeck running 51.4 and flora Hopcraft, Senni Ho, Kitty Ellis and Cara Walsh running 55.4. 

Well done to all our athletes and thank you to the officials, volunteers and supporters who made it such a great day.