English Schools Championship medals and club age group records for Herne Hill youngsters

Dani English Schools Podium 2016

Photo: Dani on the podium Gateshead

Twenty HHH athletes competing for London, and bordering counties, contested what is often referred to as the ‘young athletes Olympics’ at the Gateshead International Stadium.  They all did their schools, boroughs and counties proud, and Brendan Foster reminded us that many before including Jess Ennis and Greg Rutherford had not been on the podium, and Brendan himself had enjoyed less success in this great event that on the Olympic stage itself.  Conversely, many medallists at these championships have gone on to achieve great things on the world stage.  Ultimately, to get to these championships is a major achievement, and one that athletes cherish for the rest of their lives.

A fantastic PB by Danielle Henderson in the JG javelin, 39m46, secured a gold medal at the prestigious English Schools Championships.  Danielle was more than 2 metres ahead of her nearest competitor, in a new club record of 39m46.  A winning performance at this event is to be remembered for ever, well done to Danielle.

HHH’s second gold medal came on Saturday afternoon when Kristal Awuah snatched the Senior Girls 100m title from her London team-mate, Danielle Blake, with a time of 12.22. Both Kristal and  Danielle had come 2nd in their heats, with Kristal setting a huge new pb of 12.07. Congratulations to Kristal – a fantastic achievement when this is her first year as a Senior Girl.

Alongside Danielle’s winning performance, two more of the Club’s throwers, Alfred Mawdsley and Michella Obijiaku, secured superb silver medals.  Alfred followed up his excellent silver medal last year, with another second place with a throw of 43.36 in the IB discus.  Michella, like Alfred, followed up a silver from last year’s championship with another outstanding performance this year in the SG shot put competition.  Michella combines great strength with excellent agility, as demonstrated by her background of high quality sprinting and jumping, alongside her throws.   Michella was the unanimous choice of the London team managers for their Sylvester Akpalara Award for the outstanding way she supported and encouraged her London team throughout the weekend.

There is a famous folk song from Blaydon, in the Gateshead region-which I thought of when spectating the IG 1500m:

Oh! me lads, ye shud a’ seen w’us gannin,
Passin’ the folks alang the road just as they were stannin’.
Aal the’ lads and lasses there, aal wi’ smiling faces,
Gannin’ alang the Scotswood Road to see the Blaydon Races.

And so Alex Brown passed tired inter girls in the last 100m, storming into second place in the final, another HHH athlete to secure a second successive silver medal.  Alex’s massive PB, sub 4.30 for the first time, was the second quickest ever by a HHH female athlete of any age and faster than the winner of the (senior) 1500m at the European Athletics Championships!

First two finishers in the inter age groups are picked to represent England in the SIAB match.

Four other HHH athletes came in the top 8 in their events, all achieving ESAA standards. Denisha Marshall-Brown was 6th in Intermediate Girls shot putt, with a throw of 13.44 (national standard, and only 27cm below her pb). Isaiah Olusanya was 5th in Junior Boys 200m having run a pb of 23.43 in his heat. Rayan Moumneh was 7th in Intermediate Boys shot putt and Tiarnan Matthews 8th in Junior Boys shot putt – entry standards for both of them, and although below their pbs these were still encouraging performances at their first English Schools championships.

Well done to all other HHH athletes who contributed to making this another fantastic championship, and to their coaches for their dedication in supporting and guiding their athletes.

Bridget Yule (long term HHH member, and team administrator for the London team) would like to thank all the HHH athletes in the London team for the part they played in making this London’s best ever English Schools with 16 individual medals, two relay golds, a championship best for the Junior Boys relay team (although no HHH athletes in that team) and the Junior Girls winning the trophy for most points in their group of 13 counties (with Danielle, Mallory Cluley and Jessica Collins all contributing valuable points to the overall winning total).

Southern Athletics League, Tooting

Herne Hill Harriers secured a massive team victory at this home fixture, keeping alive hopes of promotion.  A blend of experience and youth ensured an overwhelming victory by the combined men’s and women’s team.

Led by Nicholas Atwell who achieved first place finishes in the 100, 200 and 400, HHH sprinters dominated the shorter events and relays.  It was a similar story in the men’s middle distance events, and also the throws where a combination of established and young athletes delivered top performances.  HHH women sprinters also dominated their events, and were well backed up by strong middle distance performances (including a big PB and inside this year’s ES qualifying time for Katie Balme in the 1500m s/c), top qualify 800m running by Eimear Griffin (very unlucky not to be at the ES but also winning the LJ and TJ) and Katie Kedward.

Let’s make a big push at the final SAL match, a home fixture, but also the critical final BAL and UKWAL matches.


Senior Inter Counties, Basingstoke

I have not yet seen all results for this fixture, but well done to Steph Mitchell who finished 5th in a high quality 800m, and followed this up with some good 400m racing.  Gavin Johnson Assoon backed up his 64m plus throw in the SAL with another throw over 60m, in tricky windy conditions for second place.  Both were representing surrey in a southern inter counties match.


Keith Newton, 11 July 2016