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Stadium Passes the test. BUCS 2012 day 3 & 4
BUCS 2012 Day’s 3 and 4 at the Olympic Stadium saw the action coming thick and fast as the newly assembled but well drilled team of officials rattled through the timetable of events.
Sunday 6th May: Following what was an outstanding evening’s athletics from the atmosphere of the crowd at Saturday’s men’s 400m hurdles, we saw a fantastic match- up between Niall Flannery (Loughborough) Chris Wakeford (UWIC) and Bath’s Matt Sumner. Flannery who had been cruising in the rounds put on a good display of one lap hurdling as he crossed the line in a time of 50.67 seconds which falls inside the European Championships qualifying ‘A’ standard. When asked about his tactics going into the race the Loughborough athlete said: “I have recently been working on a new stride pattern and this was first proper attempt at putting it into action. It was a bit ropey coming up the home straight but I had to keep going. I was strong off the first 100m but felt under pressure due to lack of race fitness, which you only get when competing.” The 3 time BUCS champion now goes back into training before racing again at the Loughborough international later on in the month. Chris Wakeford of UWIC took silver and also picked up a new personal best for his efforts with a clocking of 50.82. Wakeford who ran his previous personal best at the 2011 BUCS championships took over a second off his previous best of 52.2. England Athletics had been following Chris since Friday evening’s session. He spoke to us again after the race and explained that in the warm up area he had some issues: “I had a back spasm in the warm-up before the race but once I got out of the blocks I forgot everything else.” On his race he said: “I wanted to go out hard as I normally have a strong finish. My stride pattern worked well.” Loughborough did the male /female double with their female one lap hurdler winning the women’s race, Justine Kinney clocked 58.81 seconds.
Mervyn Luckwell (Coached by: Esa Utriainen, Club: Marshall Milton Keynes) got his chance to throw in the Olympic stadium in the UKA javelin event. He threw a best of 79.84m. Herne Hill Harriers’ Jade Johnson (Coached by: John Herbert) made an appearance on the 2012 Olympic long jump run way. Following two years of injury problems, the London athlete who showed massive support for the games coming to the capital, measured a distance of 6.15m in the some what wintery conditions. The UKA events continued on the track where Laura Weightman (coached by: Steve Cram, Club: Morpeth), ran a personal best on her way to wining the UKA 3000m’s events in 9:02.62. The barriers were out on the home straight for the UKA 110m hurdles race which saw Windsor Slough Eton & Hounslow’s Lawrence Clarke show his early season form with a personal best of 13.50 from Newham’s Alex Al-Ameen in second place (13.90) and former world championship finalist Will Sharman of Belgrave in 3rd also with 13.90.
More UKA events were going on with the Women’s 200 meters won by Sophie Papp of Windsor Slough Eton & Hounslow recording a personal best of 23.62. The men’s event was surrounded by drama. There was a late withdrawal of the favourite James Ellington, the Newham athlete was struggling to stay warm in the single figure temperatures and said: “It’s not worth it! This year is too important to me and my legs are starting cramp up”. Meanwhile trackside Rikki Fifton was disqualified for a false start. The race got under way with Sam Watts taking to the line in 21.16 seconds.
The UKA events continued to provide twist and turns with the result of Saturdays 400m hurdles called into question. Originally 17 year old Hayley McLean from Chelmsford being disqualified but 48 hours later the Steve Mitchell coached athlete was reinstated into second place and the personal best performance given of 58.57 seconds, a time that now qualifies the young athlete for World Junior athletics championship selection.
Sarah McCormack ran a personal best in the women’s 10,000m on her way to winning the gold medal and BUCS title. The university of Lancaster athlete ran 34:31.52. Felix Maisey-Curtis (Loughborough) took the men’s long jump title with a personal best of 7.38 meters. The men’s discuss title went to St Marys, Richmond’s Zane Duquemin with a best throw of 57.07m.
Sunday saw 4 new championship best performances set in a single day at the 2012 BUCS. Andrew Pozzi (UWE) had clocked 13.52 on route to winning heat 3, and would contest the final on the Monday. Birmingham’s Nick Cruchley raised the bar in the men’s pole vault to a new championship of 5.22m. Also in the field Isabelle Jeffs (Loughborough) threw 53.93 for qualification in the women’s javelin, Charlotte Purdue (St Mary’s) broke the women’s 5000m record with a 15:55.12 clocking.
By the start of day 4 St Mary’s university found its self second in the medals table behind a strong Loughborough team, you might have expected it to be a race for 2nd position based on the history of the event. West London power house Brunel had dropped to 5th position below Bath, Birmingham in 3rd and 4th respectively.
The programme got going quickly with some good standard races. None more so than that from Andy Pozzi in the final of the men’s 110m hurdles. The now emerging star of British athletics had already set a championship record (Olympic A standard) in his heat, but the Malcolm Arnold coached athlete went quicker in the final running a new lifetime best of 13.35 to make his stamp on the event in UK at this time. He said: “I’m feeling good, I need to stay healthy. I am more likely to get injured at top capacity, so that’s my biggest threat.” He was being watched by his sister and his former coach Paul Bearman who was once the England Athletics West Midlands Manager. With Lawrence Clarke running the previous day and clocking a good time, British hurdling looks in good shape.
The women’s 200 meter final was won by Emily Diamond of Loughborough, the only athlete under the 24 second mark. Silver went to a local London athlete who has been suffering with a nightmare of injuries for the last couple of years. Jo White ran a personal best of 24.28 and was representing Bath but based at St Mary’s, Richmond and is now coached by Colin Bovell. She looks to have put her injuries behind her! Staying with Bath athletes; Sophie Tyers ran a personal best of 2:06.29 to win the 800 meters. The men’s event was won by Loughborough’s Guy Learmonth in a respectable 1:50.36. The Men’s 200m race was won by Deji-Henry Tobais in 21.15. The Hertfordshire Uni athlete had been the event favourite from the early stages. Local athlete; Lumar Sylvester from University East London, took bronze in the 200m 21.51. Having just returned from a spell of warm weather training, Lumar is a product of the ‘Track Academy’ run by Connie Henry in Willesden and is coached by national sprints mentor Clarence Callender. He spoke to England Athletics: “I’m very happy… track academy has been really good for me; it offers training, education and it’s all about your personal discipline.” There was another Track Academy athlete in the men’s final, Confidence Lawson finished 4th with 21.54.
Men’s 5000 meters saw Belgrave Harriers Ugandan stalwart Paskar Owor, use his experience to take victory In the event with a personal best of 14:18.92.
The men’s 3000m steeple chase saw 9 personal bests recorded, one of which was by the winner Ben Nagy (Bath) in a time of 8:50.14. The PB’s kept coming, this time in the field with the winner of the men’s shot put, Local Londoner Zane Duquemin of St Mary’s University with a winning throw of 18.03m.
The one lap sprint event (400m) saw Jarryd Dunn (Wolverhampton) take the 2012 BUCS title in a time of 46.66 which was also a new personal best. The Keith Holt coached athlete now looks for qualification for the European championships. Silver went to Rich Davenport (Loughborough). The Newham athlete is better known as a 400m Hurdler, he said: “I didn’t know what to expect as I don’t normally run 400’s, I felt like it was a jog to 200m” He later returned to anchor Loughborough to victory in the men’s 4x400m relay and close the BUCS event in style.
On the subject of relays; Brunel were not leaving the Olympic park quietly, taking 2 medals in both the men’s and women’s 4x100m relays. In the women’s event; the team of Stephanie Gaynor, Elise Walker, Gemma Malster and Leah Moore took bronze while their male counterparts : Joshua Abladey, Andre Wright, Dannish Walker-Khan and Junior Ejehu won in a new championship best performance of 40.28 under heavy downpours.
There is always a shock result of some sort at a championship and there appeared to be one in the men’s 1500meters. Shocked to have made it to the final; Michael Wilsmore of Plymouth University ran, a personal best of 3:46.95 to win the 2012 BUCS title in the Olympic stadium. The Tamar Trotter athlete coached by Graham Riley said: “Wining the BUCS and getting a PB all in the Olympic stadium… it’s fantastic!” No body was more surprised than Wilsmore himself who later said: “I was happy to just make the final and when a gap emerged between Jonny Hay and Harry Harper with a 100m to go, I thought I’m having that!” The shocked Wilsmore asked the interviewer: “did I win by much?”
As the curtain came down on the BUCS 2012 championships and the masses of tired yet happy athletes and spectators left the Olympic park, the stadium was looking ready and primed for the next test event ‘Visa London Disability Athletics Challenge’ which starts 8th May.Follow @londonathletics