Personal best in the Hurdles on his way to winning the decathlon
As the weather turns distinctly Autumnal after such a good Spring & Summer we report on a great sequence of athletic performances by Ollie Thorner at the Swiss Championships in Hochdorfer Mehrkampfmeisterschaften (Multi-event competition) held near Lucerne. Ollie has moved to 15th on the World rankings for his age group (u20) this year for his decathlon performances and achieved all of this in truly tough, cold, conditions. Read on for Al’s report.
We can also announce some changes to the Harrier organised training sessions: The senior session (age14 upwards) for Harrier members at Strode College continues on a Thursday this week and next (8th Oct) and then will switch to a Tuesday night, same time, same place from Tuesday 13th October. Please ensure you book a place 24 hours ahead so as to comply with Covid-19 requirements. The Junior session for age 8-15 will also resume on Monday 12th October at the same venue 6pm-7pm. Read on for details.
SWISS DECATHLON – worth a quarantine!
“Wow! What a weekend of up and down emotions!
I'll begin at the end! Switzerland ruled on Sunday (27th Sept) that all visitors from the UK would have to quarantine for 14 days on arrival in the country! Had that happened a week earlier, that would have been truly disappointing as we would have not been able to travel.
The weather forecast for the two days had been awful from a week or more before the event and I was reluctant to go. It didn't disappoint as on Saturday 26th (Day 1) it was 6 degrees, a howling wind and intermittent rain showers. I should have been pleased as it was forecast for heavy rain all day! It basically meant that the big score that Ollie was seeking was impossible as the winds were headwinds for the 100m and the Long Jump and swirling around the track ta'boot!
warming up before the competition
Despite this, Ollie's performances were excellent, albeit not where we wanted and he's a real professional who is incredibly knowledgeable about his events. He recorded a legal PB in the 100m, a season's best in the Long Jump and won the 400m in a howling wind beating a 48 second athlete in a highly respectable 50.25. Day 1 was really cold and it took a lot out of him especially the 400m and he was tired the next day despite all the recovery methods we could use.
Day 2 was much better weather - 13 degrees, lighter winds and even some sunshine in the afternoon. Despite being tired he recorded a legal PB in the 110mh, a PB in the Discus, gapped 4m 40 in the Pole Vault by a country mile before going out at 4m 50 and a PB in the Javelin. He could have been forgiven for jogging the 1500m as he had an unassailable lead but he set the pace from gun to tape and won in 4m 30 seconds, again in testing winds.
1m94cm clearance in the High Jump
He didn't do brilliantly in anything but did good in everything and to quote Tiger Woods "it's not about how good my good is, it's about how good my bad is that makes me a winner"
He finished with a legal Decathlon PB of 7216 (13 points less than his previous wind assisted PB of 7229) which ranks him 15th in the world as an U20 man for 2020. This won the competition by a staggering 529 points. I know he's disappointed in his personal performance but we learned a great deal from the weekend and valuable lessons learned about competing in poor weather (not to mention borrowed poles he had only picked up for the first time three days before the comp and how to deal with bleeding hands!).
So that's the weird season of 2020 done and dusted and now for him back to studies and training in Seattle after quarantine is over.”
100m - 2nd - 11.25
Long Jump - 1st - 6m 72
Shot Put - 4th - 12m 00
High Jump - 1st - 1m 94
400m - 1st - 50.25
100m hurdles - 2nd - 14.93
Discus - 1st - 39m 08
Pole Vault - 2nd 4m 40
Javelin - 3rd - 45m 87
1500m - 1st - 4 mins 30.78
That's a fantastic set of results in such tough conditions - all good - not only for now, but for future competitions where that experience may well be invaluable!
Change from Thursday to Tuesday coming up:
We notify Strode of all attendees so there is no need to sign in individually but we would encourage you to use the QR code if you have downloaded the Covid-19 Tracking app. (If there is sufficient demand and coach availability we will also look at organising a Thursday session but for now just the Tuesday session from 13th October). PLease follow all the usual Covid-19 guidance - wash hands before arrival, keep social distancing on arrival, avoid touching any equipment, etc.
Junior Training starts again
Millfield Track – we still have no news on when we might hire the Millfield Track – we will update the website and advise folk at training when/if there is any change to Harrier training venues.
Wednesday running group continues – we’ve recently seen a few new enquiries from folk to join our Wednesday informal running groups from the Wells Rugby Club. These sessions continue to run with groups of 6 going off to comply with Covid-19 rules. Meet up socially distanced outside the Rugby Clubhouse at 6.40 to run from 6.45, back by 7.30/7.45. As the evenings get darker no doubt the off-road option will go and there will be more running on the pavements around Wells. These sessions are aimed at age 18 and upwards. Andy Piper will continue to welcome new joiners to this group.
SEE TRAINING TAB for more detail - Check this website every week/fortnight for updates
PLEASE ONLY TRAIN IF YOU FEEL WELL ENOUGH - there are a few bugs going around at present, not just Covid-19, so if you feel you have a cold or sore throat give the training a miss.
OPPORTUNITY TO COACH The Harriers are looking to increase the number of qualified coaches so as to be able to provide additional capacity for coaching - please contact Paul if you want to attend a Harrier paid for Coaching course at Taunton on the weekend of 17th & 18th October (Coaching Assistant). The course will be really useful to you as well as the Club and great fun.
COMPETITION UPDATE The previously noted Baltonsborough Xmas Pud race that was due to be held on 20th December has now been cancelled due to the difficulties associated with Open events and the need to have First Aid/Ambulance provision. We hope, however, to have some tests of fitness at the Training sessions over the next few months.
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