Club Records for Arlo and Phoebe at Watford BMC Grand Prix

Saturday’s BMC Grand Prix meet at Watford saw not one, but two Herne Hill Harriers club senior records. Arlo Ludewick and Phoebe Anderson, both in their first year as senior athletes ran big PBs in their respective events.

There was a certain symmetry in the timetabling of these records, as Ludewick set his in the second event of an evening of more than four hours of racing and Anderson’s came in the penultimate event of the night.
Ludewick took down a club men’s 800m record which had belonged to Bob Setti for sixty years with a PB by three seconds of 1:48.45. 

Ludewick won a C race which if based on pre race times he was more likely to finish at the back of. Indeed he was lying seventh of eight in the field behind a closely knit pack until he launched his finishing kick coming off the final bend. Swinging out into lane four down the home straight his run was timed to perfection to come through strongly for a huge breakthrough victory. Ludewick will be racing in the men’s 1500m at the British Athletics Championship in Manchester later this month.

Anderson was equally impressive later in the evening when she smashed her 5000m PB by twenty seconds to clock 15:50.17. This time placed her sixth of 25 starters in a strong field of internationals. Her time brings the club women’s 5000m record below 16 minutes. After running with the second group for the first half of the race Anderson was then detached and effectively running solo for the final few laps, although a strong final 400m saw her closing on those immediately ahead of her as the finish approached. Anderson is now just outside the top twenty on the UK women’s 5000m rankings and is fourth among Under 23s.

As well as the two club records at Watford, Andrew Warburton ran a track PB 5000m with 15:15.87, while Annabel Hobday was disappointed with her 2:16.75 in an 800m race that didn’t go for her on the day.

Harriers have two top level internationals with major championship aspirations this season. Katie Snowden consolidated her current position as one of the top ranked British female 1500m runners with a fifth place in the Sollentuna World Athletics Continental Tour meet in Sweden on Sunday. Her time of 4:06.08, although a little outside her season’s best so far was another qualifying time for the Commonwealth Games, which she hopes will have reinforced her case for England team selection.

Sprinter Kristal Awuah raced twice in Geneva on Saturday over 100m, clocking a wind assisted 11.27 and a season’s best legal time of 11.36 as she too was trying to persuade the selectors with relay as well as individual possibilities.

At the British Masters BMAF Championship in Derby, M75 Allan Long claimed three national medals, two gold and one silver. Long was the winner of the 100m in 15.45 and the long jump with 3.46m and placed second in the 200m in 33.09. Giuseppe Minetti won the M50 sprint double with 12.11 in the 100m and 24.88 for 200m. Another double gold medallist was Nikki Sturzaker, who claimed the spoils in the W45 800m in 2:33.82 and 1500m in 5:12.56.

Some very good 100m times were recorded at the Newham Summer Series at Stratford on Friday. Another entrant for the upcoming British Championship, Michael Miller clocked 10.66 and 10.69, both runs being only a few hundredths outside his season’s best.

Niyah Costley ran a PB of 11.86 in one of her races, with the other one being a wind aided 12.17. Sapphire Haley also ran a PB 12.50 and had a faster time of 12.42, but the latter was wind assisted. Both of Myles Copeland’s races had following winds just over the permitted limit for times to count in rankings lists, but his 10.89 and 10.98 were nevertheless very impressive.

The London Schools Championship was in Battersea Park on Saturday, with at least a dozen Herne Hill young athletes selected in the first wave of the London team for the English Schools Championship in July. These include Ella Rennie 100m, Lily-Rose Brown 300m, Lucy Wright 800m, Sophia Sahai 800m, Victoria Alicante-King Shot Put, Niyah Costley 100m, Je’nae James shot put, Jon Goldston 300m, Keeran Sriskandarajah 800m, Dante Clarke 100m hurdles, plus Omari Jackson-Whyte and Alex Abebrese both shot put.

The Southern Athletics League fixture on Sunday at Battersea Park we saw a good number of event winners from a Herne Hill team who provisionally placed third, close behind the second team in the provisional match results. 

In the men’s events Victor Nzolele 11.2 and 22.8 and Andris Thorpe 11.4 and 23.8 were winners of the A and B 100m and 200m. Isaac Ogunlade was a very clear winner of the A 400m in 50.0 with Harvey Kande taking the B string in 53.6. 

Simon Coombes ran 4:20.2 in the B string 1500m to take take the win, while Aaron Brown’s 6.03m did likewise in the B long jump. The men’s 4 x 100m relay team were winners in 45.8. A mixed 4 x 400m relay team with two men and two women won their race in 4:00.0.

Among the women, Khelya Ekwe and Joyce Kalombo won the 200m A and B in 27.0 and 26.8. Fiona de Mauny won the A 800m in 2:21.5 with Katy Matthews winning the B string in  2:31.0. Jenny Nandi was first in the B 5000 in 19.41.0.

Rosalie Laban won the 400m hurdles in 73.2. Lily Newton won the A 1500m steeplechase in 5:23.9 with Izzy Perry taking the B race in 5:53.7. Jaydine Robinson and Kalombo had a win double in the long jump with PBs of 5.18m and 4.93m. Je’nae James won the shot with 11.35m and the 4 x 100m relay team were first in 52.0. 

Geoff Jerwood