Big effort needed to take title
The Ashford/Thanet composite squad go into the final UK Youth Development League Southern South 2 match at Erith Stadium needing a big effort if they are to snatch the title away from Crawley.
The West Sussex youngsters have a narrow lead over second-placed Ashford but it promises to be a battle with the two squads set to meet in the final meeting on July 28.
A single point win gave Crawley (640) victory over Ashford/Thanet in the under-20/under-17 contest at Sutton Valence.
Ashford’s Lewis Smith had a brilliant double with a personal best 59.88 to win the under-17 400m hurdles. He also won the triple jump with another best (12.20m) and was fourth in the A discus.
Declan Burton recorded two personal bests, producing a storming run in the 3000m, recording 9.59.08, following up with another to finish third in the 1500m.
Ellie Gooding maintained her domination in the pole vault winning the under-17 with 3.65m and then notched another success in the under-20 100m hurdles (15.61)
Debbie Martin was another two-time winner, taking the under-20 B long jump with 4.49m and then the shot (6.21m).
However, she was below her best in her specialist event, the high jump, although her 1.60m clearance was still good enough for second in the A event.
Hattie Molloy took maximum points, winning the B high jump with a PB 1.45m and pole vault (2.25m). Lana-Emily Foyle was second in the A event (2.55m) and also finished runner-up in the B triple jump.
Rhiannon Wallwork took on another impressive workload winning the under20 A triple jump (11.35m) and recording seconds in the A javelin (16.90m) and long jump (5.17m)
Mary Coleman is growing with experience, the 15-year old winning the under-17 B discus (18.89m) and finishing second in the A shot (6.93m) and A hammer (18.78m) PB.
Robert Banks leaped to a PB 5.41m to win the under-20 B long jump, was third in the under-17 200m and fifth in the 100m, while Ben Isaac won the under-17 100m hurdles and was second in the long jump.
Jack Huxley backed up Jacob Lane’s second in the under-20 high jump, winning the B event and the 16-year-old was also second in the discus and third in the pole vault. Lane was also second in the A 110m hurdles.
Sisters Kate and Megan Lillington notched good points in the under-20 800m, Kate winning the B event and both recording season-bests.
Kieran Eland had a PB in finishing second in the under-17 800m with Ethan Collins and Will Dickinson also setting bests in the under-20 events.
Ashley Buckman won the under-20 triple jump despite being the youngest in his group, set a PB with second place in the 110m hurdles and was third in the long jump.
Bethany Kimber was second in the B under-20 200m, backing up Katie Keet’s fourth in the A race and young Matthew Ottewill secured good points with third in the under-17 javelin and fifth in the shot.
Rebecca Cock was second in the B 100m and discus, with Ellery Ireland second in the A 200m while hurdler Charlotte Tappenden had a PB in the 300m hurdles.
Kyle Denning did the same in the under-20 400m hurdles and followed up with second in the under-17 high jump.
Ashford’s under-17 4x300m quartet of Tappenden, Kimber, Gooding and Coleman produced the best performance in the relays with third place and a PB.
Ellie Goulding won gold at the English Schools Championships at Birmingham last weekend.
The Ashford AC youngster soared to championship best 3.90m in the intermediate girls pole vault, while Tonbridge schoolboy Matt Blandford, who lives near Charing, claimed bronze in the senior boys’ discus with 48.64m.
Kent athletes won a total of 15 medals during an impressive weekend.
SHARP DOUBLE: Declan Burton, who ran two personal bests