West Sussex youngsters strike gold at K2

Rachel Laurie was one of the West Sussex West winners / Picture by Lee Hollyer
Rachel Laurie was one of the West Sussex West winners / Picture by Lee Hollyer
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Top West Sussex West schools athletes travelled to Crawley for the Sussex schools event and a chance to win individual medals – and the chance to impress the Sussex selectors for the prestigious English schools championships in July.

A squad of more than 60 were rewarded with nine gold medals and a host of other finalists and medallists.

Sophie-Anne Haigh, after a lengthy period of injury, came back strongly to win the senior girls’ 100m in 12.74sec.

Boys’ events

Four of the winners came in the junior boys’ category with three from pupils at Seaford College.

Caelen Stanton just pipped team-mate George Newton in the shot with both boys throwing well over 11m while Rupert Blackwell was too good for the rest in the javelin with an impressive 38.94m.

To add to Seaford’s strength in this area, Joe Spiby was runner-up in the discus with a best of just over 30m.

On the track, Ashley Goodwin from Seaford and Max Lambkin from Midhurst Rother made it a one-two in the 200m while Tom Seve from Chichester High School and Cellan Robinson both made it to a hard-fought final in the 100m.

Tom Claydon from Midhurst Rother came out on top in a close-fought long jump while Ethan Brown from Bishop Luffa improved his best to 2.60m to claim silver in the pole vault.

In the intermediate boys’ section the two winners came from Chichester High School with Ben Collins dipping under two minutes for the first time to win in 1.59.2 while Alex Halfacree made it a middle-distance double by winning the 1.500m steeplechase in just over five minutes.

Will Broom was just pipped into third place in the 1,500m with a new personal best of 4.16.9 with Bishop Luffa team-mate Leo Stallard in fourth.

Another Luffa duo of Ben Morton and Luke Campbell snatched second and third respectively in the 3,000m with Morton breaking ten minutes for the first time.

Michael Logan and Lewis Hall both made the final of the 100m while Dom Easton and Brandon Bell achieved the same feat in the 400m.

A Will Newman high jump of 1.80m was the best of the field events for a second place.

Girls’ events

Three West Sussex West schoolgirls won gold on the track at the Sussex schools finals.

Sophie-Anne Haigh, after a lengthy period of injury, came back strongly to win the senior girls’ 100m in 12.74sec.

Karina Bennett, fresh from her win in the Trundle 10k, won the senior 300m in 11.09.2.

In the intermediate 200m, Alyssa White convincingly won, with Rachel Laurie taking second place in a season’s best 26.78sec – but the unfortunate White was judged to have caused a lane infringement, which meant Laurie was upgraded to first.

Charlotte Reading was second in the seniors’ 800m.

Rosie Compton’s junior girls’ long jump didn’t go quite to plan, but she still recorded a PB 4.19m for seventh place.

Grace Wills from Bishop Luffa gained bronze in the intermediate 1,500m while Abi de Villiers was runner-up in the shot putt with 8.37m.

In the junior age group there were a host of third places. Olivia Macdonald won silver for Seaford College in the 1,500m and Olivia Wiseman from Bishop Luffa was a couple of seconds back in third, both in under five minutes.

In the 800m Xenia Truman, also from Seaford, just pipped Charlotte Bullard from Chi High School for third and fourth.

There were field bronzes for Ella Howard (high jump), Lucie Munday (discus) and Freya Chandler (javelin). Another chance for athletes to nudge selectors comes in the Southern Schools Inter-Counties this Saturday.

There is another chance for athletes to gain the selectors’ eye in the Southern Schools Inter-Counties this Saturday.

West Sussex West beach run

Chichester’s athletes turned their attention to the popular Beach Run, organised by the Arunners Running Club attracting more than 500 competitors.

The race also marked a first in the 31-year history of the Chichester club with Rebecca Moore becoming the first lady to outpace all the club’s men in a combined open race.

In fact Moore only had three of the field in front of her at the finish to be fourth overall and win the women’s race by more than four minutes.

Chichester also had the runner-up with Karina Bennett and three more women to gain the maximum ten bonus points by finishing in the top 20 with Rose Ellis fifth, Polly Neville tenth and Annabel Jeffries 15th.

Only Mikey Neville among the men also gained the ten-point bonus and in so doing he ensured a maximum score of 85 points from Chichester’s squad of nearly 40 athletes.

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