Several of our vets came home with medals from the British Masters Track and Field Championships at Alexander Stadium on 25/26 June.
There was an outstanding performance by 68-year old Allan Long in the long jump. His leap of 4.49m won him the gold in a competitive M65 event, put him top of the national rankings, and was an M65 pb. Allan has contested the long jump every year since he became an M65 and his progress has been remarkable – seventh in 2008, fourth in 2009, second last year, and now gold.
Kwei Sankofa achieved a fine double silver in the M50 100 and 400. In the 100 he faced a particularly tough challenge from old adversary Pat Logan, and was second to him in both heat and final, in which he recorded 12.07.
In the 400, Kwei missed gold by a mere one hundredth of a second, with 53.92, in a race he felt he threw away. His 100 and 400 performances place him fourth and second respectively in the rankings.
Bob Payne can now take advantage of the fact that he is back living in this country. He brought off a double bronze in the M55 1500 and 5000(4:53.56/18:02.67).
Over 60s have become a considerable force in veteran athletics, as Mike Mann certainly knows. Newcomers to M60 nudged him out of the medals on this occasion as he came fifth in the 1500 (5:10.58) and fourth in the 5000 (19:19.61).
In the M65 category, 69-year old John Garber won silver in the 1500 (5:44.20) and was fourth in the 800 (2:46.16).
In the M75 category, the competition is understandably not so strong in terms of numbers. Brian Shave, our oldest competitive athlete at 77, was fourth in the 800 (3:55.72), first in the 1500 (7:34.08) and was the only runner in his age group in the 5000 (28:52.82).