English Schools Championships - Birmingham
Friday 7th & Saturday 8th July 2017
A silver and three bronze medals and a new club record, were a fine return for the efforts of the nine club athletes representing Essex Schools at the competitive English Schools Championships held in fine weather at Birmingham on Friday and Saturday.
Max Law stepped up into the Intermediate age group after winning the junior boys’ javelin title in each of the past two years but faced tough opposition in UK Number 1 Tom Hewson who had beaten Max earlier this summer. Max improved his own career best to 62.50m but his opponent also set a new career best of 64.21m to win gold but although missing out on gold Max's silver medal earned him selection for the English Schools' team to compete in the home Countries Schools International in Dublin next weekend.
While Max was in action the discus duo of Alice Brown and Robyn Moody were also battling for medals in the junior girls' competition. Alice in her first appearance in a national final threw 31.84m to win a bronze medal, ahead of Robyn who improved from ninth place last year but had to settle for fourth with a throw of 29.88m,
Mayi Hughes had placed fourth in the Inter Girls triple jump last year in only her fourth competition at the event, beating higher ranked athletes, but this year was a genuine medal hope, as she entered the competition ranked third in a high standard battle for podium places. Mayi did not disappoint, and her 11.89m second round leap put her into medal contention. Kent's Eloise Harvey took gold in 12.04m while Bedfordshire's Jazz Sears jumped 11.92m to edge Mayi into bronze.
Jess Mitchell lined up for the Inter 3000m very much an underdog, ranked only 18th nationally but she ran superbly and was always in the leading group, emerging as a clear third to come home with a bronze medal and a new career best of 9m 40.86s, some 20 seconds faster than before and inside Faye Fullerton's 17-year-old club record.
Lola Kuponiyi threw her second ever longest distance of 11.98m for an impressive fourth place in the junior girls' shot on her English Schools' debut and will hope to challenge for gold next year. Shandell Taylor was a respectable fifth with a 6.69m long jump in the senior boys' competition on his debut, and Ben Davis ran positively in the senior 2000m 'chase taking the lead at midway and hanging on strongly to finish sixth with a new career best of 6m 6.36s.
Bradley James completed the nine strong club contingent in the junior boys' javelin, throwing 44.44m on his English Schools' debut.
Shot : 4th Lola Kuponiyi 11.98m
Discus: 3rd - Alice Brown 31.84m;4th Robyn Moody 29.88m;
3000m : 3rd - Jessica Mitchell 9:40.86d PB & Club Record
Triple Jump : 3rd - Mayi Hughes 11.89m
Javelin: 15th - Bradley James 44.44m
Javelin: 2nd Max Law 62.50m PB
2000m 'Chase: 6th - Ben Davis 6m 06.36s PB
Long Jump: 5th - Shandell Taylor 6.69m
Pics: Sam Harrison, Pat Gahagan, Tony Benton