Dante Clarke wins National Pentathlon title in Sheffield

Herne Hill Harriers multi talented rising star Dante Clarke claimed a national age group gold medal in style at the England Athletics Indoor Combined Events Championship in Sheffield on Sunday.

Clarke was a clear winner of the National Indoor pentathlon title with a new PB of 2,935 points. Winning four out of five events on the day, Clarke threw a massive PB in the shot with a superb distance of 12.35m.
He won his first four events, opening with 60m hurdles in 8.81 seconds, then a long jump of 5.90m, then clearing a good 1.72m in the high jump. Clarke rounded the event off by placing fourth in the 800m in 2:22.76 which ensured a winning margin of 104 points ahead of his closest challenger.
Many events fell victim of the escalating coronavirus situation, but the English Schools Cross Country Championship took place in a wet and muddy Sefton Park in Liverpool on Saturday. Herne Hill Harriers and in particular coach Wayne Vinton’s training group were superbly represented in the senior girls race.
British junior international Charlotte Alexander finished an excellent third to secure an individual medal and also lead her Surrey Schools team to silver medals. She was followed very closely by training mates Yasmin Marghini in fifth place and Phoebe Anderson in seventh, a fabulous all round performance from the three girls. Marghini led the London Schools senior girls team to gold medals.
In Wales on Saturday the BMAF British Masters Cross Country Championship was held in Corwen. Only one Harriers athlete made the trip, Roger Alsop narrowly missing out on a medal in placing fourth in the M55 category as he returns from injury as part of an exceptionally strong Herne Hill squad in this age group.
Moving back to indoor track, the Lee Valley Athletics Centre hosted the Middlesex Championship as part of a three counties event and Isaac Ogunlade was a clear gold medal winner in the senior men’s 400m in 51.50, demonstrating good winter flat speed in readiness for outdoor 400m hurdling when the outdoor season is able to begin.
Two athletes from the club raced at the Bath Half Marathon on Sunday morning in very wet weather conditions and both were rewarded with PB runs. Richard Henderson recorded a good time of 69:22 to finish 23rd in a field of over 6,000, whilst Julia Wedmore clocked 86:09 to revise her previous best time by over three minutes.

The upcoming racing programme now looks empty with wholesale cancellation of road races and  relays and many track and field events in these uncertain circumstances. Clubs will follow Government and Official NHS policy.


Geoff Jerwood