Lo­cal ath­let­ics looks to be on right track

EVENING TELE­GRAPH reporter runs the rule over the lo­cal ath­let­ics scene - and he likes what he sees . . .

The Peterborough Evening Telegraph - - Sport -

AS 2011 draws to a close, the lo­cal ath­let­ics scene ap­pears to be as strong as it’s been for sev­eral years judg­ing by the num­ber of cur­rent in­ter­na­tion­als the area pos­sesses.

Lo­cals rep­re­sented their coun­try on the roads, cross-coun­try and in track and field - both in­doors and out - in 2011 and over a wide age span with young­sters, se­niors and masters all do­ing the area proud.

Peter­bor­ough Ath­letic Club’s Max Ever­est made his in­ter­na­tional de­but in a year that also brought English Schools glory. He fin­ished sec­ond for Eng­land in the 100m hur­dles at the Bri­tish Schools In­ter­na­tional and there’s no rea­son why he can’t go on to be­come a se­nior in­ter­na­tional in fu­ture un­der the guid­ance of Roy Thick­penny.

Ever­est floats ef­fort­lessly over the hur­dles and seems set for a bright fu­ture while club­mate Joel Gren­fell would surely have joined him at that Bri­tish Schools In­ter­na­tional had he not picked up an in­jury in his fi­nal train­ing ses­sion be­fore the English Schools.

The long jumper needed to fin­ish sec­ond at Gateshead to se­cure an Eng­land de­but and his su­perb form prior to his in­jury sug­gests that would have been lit­tle more than a for­mal­ity.

An­other to earn an in­ter­na­tional de­but on the track this year was March ace Glen Watts who rep­re­sented Eng­land in the steeple­chase at an end-of-sea­son meet in France to join twin brother Dan as an in­ter­na­tional - former Evening Tele­graph Sports­man of the Year Dan hav­ing trav­elled to the World Cross-coun­try Cham­pi­onships with Brir­tain as a ju­nior.

Spald­ing’s Emily Moss made her Eng­land bow ear­lier in the year, also on the track al­beit in­doors, while two lo­cal aces have their eyes on next year’s Olympics Games in Lon­don.

March star and reign­ing Evening Tele­graph Sportswoman of the Year Louise Hazel made yet an­other cham­pi­onship ap­pear­ance in 2011, per­form­ing well at the World Cham­pi­onships in Daegu just a year af­ter win­ning the Com­mon­wealth hep­tathlon ti­tle.

Hazel al­ready has the Olympic qual­i­fy­ing mark while Deep­ing hurlder Julz Adeni­ran made an im­pres­sive re­turn to the sport this year and is now firmly in the mix for a spot in the 110m hur­dles.

Af­ter a two-year ab­sence to con­cen­trate on his law de­gree, Adeni­ran re-es­tab­lished him­self as one of the coun­try’s best this year.

Aaron Scott be­came an Eng­land in­ter­na­tional on the roads when com­pet­ing over the half-marathon this year and the Stam­ford ace also en­joyed plenty of lo­cal suc­cesses.

Train­ing part­ner Philippa Tay­lor helped Eng­land to vic­tory at the Bri­tish Masters Cross-coun­try In­ter­na­tional in Glas­gow where two of her new Nene Val­ley Har­ri­ers team-mates - ex-wer­ring­ton Jog­gers John Her­bert and Michael Moore - were re­serves for Eng­land.

Her­bert, who made his Eng­land de­but at the same meet­ing last year, won the open race while Moore - who en­joyed a su­perb year and won the Cambs Road League - was sec­ond.

Spald­ing’s John Pike en­joyed over­seas suc­cess when win­ning a 10k in Cyprus this year and would surely have made the Eng­land team for Glas­gow had he been aware of the se­lec­tion pro­ce­dure.

Wer­ring­ton Jog­ger Paul Hal­ford rep­re­sented Wales at that meet­ing in an­other suc­cess­ful year that saw him make his Welsh se­nior de­but at the Com­mon­wealth Ul­tra Cham­pi­onships, hav­ing early been crowed Welsh marathon cham­pion with his first sub-2.30 per­for­mance in Lon­don.

Lo­cal vet­er­ans also did well on the track this year and Nene Val­ley Har­rier An­drea Jenk­ins was the most suc­cess­ful. The high­light of her hugely suc­cess­ful year was her 10 gold medals at the LSW World Long Throws Cham­pi­onships in Hun­gary while hus­band and wife Wendy and Rod Dunn con­tinue to rep­re­sent Bri­tain in the sprints and walks re­spec­tively.

Let’s hope 2012 brings just as much in­ter­na­tional recog­ni­tion for lo­cal ath­letes.

MARCH ace Glen Watts (above) fin­ished sec­ond for Shaftes­bury Bar­net in the Met­ro­pol­i­tan Cross-coun­try League at Ruis­lip on Satur­day, clock­ing 26.02 to fin­ish 10 sec­onds away from vic­tory.

SPALD­ING’S Emily Moss made a rare 5k out­ing on Satur­day when fin­ish­ing 12th over­all and third wo­man in the Bushy Parkrun 5k.

The Eng­land in­ter­na­tional clocked 18.20 while a BRJ con­tin­gent lined up over the same dis­tance in the Cam­bridge Parkrun as usual.

Giles Corby led them home in 25th po­si­tion when record­ing a fifth per­sonal best of the year over this dis­tance.

BRJ re­sults: 25 Giles Corby 20.27, 27 Andy Barber 20.35, 48 Andy Mat­son 22.18, 200 Es­ther Cotton 32.15 (1st WV65-69), 211Tony Gold­smith 33.21, 212 Cameron Smith 33.21, 213 Sarah Hall 33.25, 217 Suzie Hall 34.19.

NENE Val­ley’s an­nual Christ­mas Paar­lauf com­pe­ti­tion again proved to be a roar­ing suc­cess.

More than 100 com­peti­tors took part in the ran­dom pairs event which re­quires a wrapped Christ­mas present as en­try.

Rob Lornie and David Desa teamed up to win the se­nior event over 5000m while Dan Cor­ri­gan and Kieran Jack emerged vic­to­ri­ous in the Un­der 15 race over 3000m.

Oliver Oak­ley and Nathan Smith took the spoils in the 1000m race for Un­der 11s. The win­ners’ re­ward was first se­lec­tion of the gifts!

NENE Val­ley Har­rier Ruth Jones fol­lowed up her vic­tory in last week’s Frost­bite Friendly League by fin­ish­ing fifth over­all and sec­ond wo­man in the Bed­ford Parkrun 5k.

Jones, who also fin­ished third wo­man in the Nene Val­ley 10 ear­lier this month, clocked 19.04.

RIS­ING STAR: Max Ever­est made his in­ter­na­tional de­but in 2011.

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