Wells City Harrier athletes continue to perform at a high level in the different athletic disciplines. The Club has helped coach a number to achieve TeamGB status and two of the cohort are now on College scholarships in the USA where athletic facilities are a step up from most UK institutions. This week we have a report of Ollie & Elise Thorner's recent indoor athletic performances in the States where Ollie has gone 2nd on the UK's junior (u20) indoor heptathlon rankings (of all time). News also of Nathan Young winning at the Longleat Road race. Read on also for links to the Harrier supported races coming up.
Nathan Young (left) & Alex Meadows after some good running at Longleat
(From a report by Al Thorner)
Twins Ollie & Elise Thorner have been in recent action in their first year as ‘Freshers’ in the US. Ollie took part in the Dempsey Invitational on his home track at Washington University. He was the youngest of the competitors (including senior Team GB athlete Tim Duckworth) to take part in the indoor heptathlon consisting of 7 events.On Day 1 he achieved a pb in the 60m with 7.25, then long jumped out to 6.39m; before equalling his pb in the Shot Put with 11.11m. He finished Day 1 with a pb in the High jump of 2.01m.
On Day 2, Ollie ran a pb in the 60m Hurdles in 8.57, then achieved a pb in the Pole Vault with 4.60m. The final event in an indoor heptathlon is the 1000m and Ollie proceeded to win the race in a pb of 2mins 39 seconds to finish the competition 3rd overall. His points tally of 5,345 for the 7 events is actually the 2nd best ever by a junior (u20) athlete in UK athletics history, with the record set 30 years previously.
Fellow TeamGB athlete Tim Duckworth was carrying various niggles during the competition and completed only a few of the events but went on to provide Ollie with great support and coaching tips throughout the two days. Tim helped to pace Ollie in the early stages of the 1000m.
Tim with Ollie after the event
Meanwhile, on the same day, Ollie’s twin sister Elise was competing in Albuquerque, New Mexico, in an indoor mile event providing pacing duties for a US National XC Champion, Weini Kelati, to achieve a College record in the race, Elise going through 800m in 2.16 before dropping out at as planned at 1200m. This follows up her recent 800m indoor track time of 2.12 achieved the week before on the same track.
Elise in pace-making mode
Whilst on the subject of Harrier members who are now Stateside, it's now almost exactly ten years ago that Emily Smith as a junior (u15) athlete won the English Schools XC Championships in Manchester. She's now competing for her Eastern Michigan team where she has recently run 2.16 for 800m and 9.54 for 3,000m at indoor meets.
LONGLEAT 10k road race
Closer to home two of the Senior Harriers were in action at the Longleat 10km road race on Sunday where there were 1,374 finishers on the figure of eight course including a section through the woods, Harrier Nathan Young won the event in 33.57 with team mate Alex Meadows 22nd in 40.45,
BUCS - British Universities & Colleges Sports XC Championships
At this year's event held in Edinburgh, last Saturday (1st February) one of our Honorary Life Members Luke Prior was 16th (33.25) in the Long course race whilst Sam Sommerville was 151st in 37.26. Well done both! (let me know if I've missed other Harrier performances there)
NATIONAL XC CHAMPIONSHIPS
5 Harriers have entered for the prestigious National Championships with the Club paying their entry and a travel bursary. The event takes place on 22nd February at Woolaton Park, Nottingham. Good luck to Sam Sommerville (senior), Hannah Blundy (u15), Darcy Dryden (u15), Archie Coates (u15) & Tommy Hummel (u15).
GWENT LEAGUE CROSS COUNTRY
This coming Saturday 8th February is the 4th fixture this season. The venue is a new one at Chepstow Racecourse. Senior men in particular are encouraged to race but there are races for all ages as per usual. Contact Jon James for any further details or to discuss shared transport. http://www.gwent-league.org.uk/
Jon at 07748 323773
Entry forms for the Harrier supported local races at Babcary and Butleigh are now available and links to the Wells Fun Runs entry portal are here:
Butleigh 10k multi-terrain - Sunday 17th April - link http://www.butleighvillage.co.uk/mtr.html
STREET 5k – Wednesday 12th February
The next edition is number 185 in a sequence going back over 30 years! Enter on the night for the 5k or for juniors the 1k (recommended for school years 5 & 6) or 2k (recommended for school years 7 & 8). Race starts at 7.30pm. Enter no later than 7.15pm at United Reform Church Hall (opp Living Homes). Our thanks to those members who turn out to help marshal, record positions and times or help in the Hall. If you, as a member (or parent of a junior member) haven't yet helped at this event this Series then please try and make the effort.
Sessions continue at Strode College Sports Centre on Mondays & Tuesdays whilst we await news of the track improvements at Millfield. Our thanks to the Strode Centre staff for helping us with training facilities. New participants are welcome - £2 per session for Harrier Members and £3 for non-members (Members of other athletic Clubs expected to join the Harriers for regular team competition)
HARRIER TEAM NEWS
There are still places available for any senior athlete who fancies competing in one of two Harrier teams (10 per team) at the 103 mile Cotswold Way Relay on Saturday July 4th – contact Paul.
Peter Clothier has now recruited 2 teams of Harriers for the 100km Wessex Ridgeway Relays on Sunday 17th May.
GOOD LUCK at South West Schools XC
A number of Harrier trained juniors will be competing this coming Saturday at the South West Schools Championships – good luck to them at the event in Bournemouth. If a parent can send a report and a photo or two we can include it in next week’s Web Report.