HHH Women Vets Win 2 Matches in a Row

To misquote the Bee Gees: “We Win Again!” but by a very narrow margin of 2 points. For HHH ladies considering joining the team, please don’t think we are doing fine without you. Due to absence and injury, we had one less competitor than the first match, which makes the result even more remarkable, but we need you! The over-stretching cannot be sustained, particularly if we make it through to the finals on 4 September which has many more events than individual matches – please get in touch now!

Match 2 – 6 June 2016

Hillingdon is always the more difficult match for us to get to, but 9 of us managed and all events were covered once again. The weather smiled upon us as did the gods of good fortune, who acknowledged our tremendous efforts.

The shot put served up a dollup of deja vu from the last match, with Sharon St Luce and I winning the W50 and W60 events and Kathleen Moeller’s valiant 3rd place against other teams’ strong W35 throwers.

Sharon rushed over to triple jump to join our newbie W50 secret weapon Mairi Maclean – emphatically dusting off the cobwebs when she won with 7.50m on her first time out in this event since school. Sharon took on the W35s to clinch 2nd place with 7.48m.

Meanwhile in the 800m events, Nikki Sturzaker was fighting injury to take 2nd place in the W35A and it was a big welcome back to the team to Natalie Zara, winning the W35B. Gillian Wheeldon and Claire Steward covered this (much) less favourite distance for them, giving us valuable 3rd and 2nd place points in the W50 and W60. One of the highlights of the evening for me was Gillian, after shouts of “behind you!” from the stands and with less than 10m to the line, leaping into top gear and managing to fend off the challenge.

Missing our 200m sprinters, these gaps were filled by long distance runners Nikki (2nd W35A), Rebecca Barrow in her fabulous debut match with us (3rd W35B) and selfless Claire (3rd W60). After the victorious triple jump, Mairi Maclean thought she would see if her sprint legs remembered how, which they did, and got us 2nd in the W50. More to come I am told!

I joined Sharon and Mairi at the long jump, to come 3rd in W60 (it was never going to be any different!) before I ran over to the hammer event. Mairi and Sharon gave us a repeat performance: a 1st for Mairi’s debut of 3.58m in the W50 and once again Sharon taking on the youngsters in a 2nd place near-pb leap of 3.71m.

Natalie and Rebecca absolutely shone in the 3000m with their 1st places in W35A and W35B. Foregoing her preferred 200m race to cover the W50 3000m, Gillian fought off two adversaries to come in 3rd, and Claire came in a great 2nd especially considering she is recovering from illness.

A big thank you to Kathleen for accompanying me at the hammer event and providing 4th place points in W35. I was pleased with 3rd place in the W50 with a season’s best of 24.58m against strong throwers in that category.

Mairi, Gillian, Rebecca and Nikki brought home the baton in 2nd place in the 4 x 100m relay, ensuring the winning final points total for the evening.

Once again HHH Women Vets have shown tremendous courage and fortitude, coupled with outstanding team spirit. Nothing is certain though and we must gain at least 2nd place in the next two matches if we are to go through to the final in September.

Match 1 – 9 May 2016

To misquote the late great David Bowie: “You can be heroes, just for one evening …” and due to injuries and lack of availability, 10 heroic athletes covered all the women’s scoring events. With the points gradually piling up, and after a post-match points recalculation, we had emerged triumphant from the competition and the soaking rain.

We began as we meant to continue, with wins for Sharon St Luce and me in the W50 and W60 shot put and the ever-improving Kathleen Moeller taking 3rd in the very competitive W35s.

We were particularly short of W35 sprinters and swiftly moving on to the 100m, Sharon filled the W35A gap. She would have won the B string and W50 Gillian Wheeldon made sure we did, showing the youngsters how it’s done. Mandy Brown would have won the W35 B string too, but covered the W50 100m for the first time since 2014, gaining a great 3rd place, and I came 4th – not last! – in the W60s. W50 non-scoring newbie Hilary Sutcliffe would also have won the W35B: more to come from this lady!

Fresh from the 100m (!) Mandy and I lined up for the 2000m Walk. Mandy still managed 3rd place in W50 and in my debut in this event I came 4th in W60, a lap behind everyone else in a time I won’t mention – apologies to the very patient officials and to the 400m men who were waiting to start their race! Penel Cummings was streets ahead of course, leaving 4.5 minutes between her and second place in the W35s.

The revelation that Patrizia Gnoato can jump as well as run has produced some remarkable results and her first place with a pb of 1.20m in the W35 high jump, as well as her 2nd place in the long jump after the 400m, is testimony to this. After shot put and 100m Sharon took 2nd place in the W50 high jump and went on to win the W50 long jump.

Our W35s Nikki Sturzaker and Patrizia won the 400m A and B strings in convincing style and Gillian came a close 2nd in the W50s gaining a pb of 80.0 in the process. Our long distance W60 star Claire Steward was awarded 2nd place after a whisker separated her from 3rd – the effort producing a pb of 88.5.

Recovering from injury, Nikki valiantly took 2nd place in the W35 1500m A String and W50 Mandy took on the younger age group to take 3rd in the B string. Newbie Jane Krammer took to the track like a duck to water with 3rd place in the W50s – watch this space! – and Claire polished off the evening in 2nd place in her first time out at this distance.

HHH Women Vets have a reputation for the best 4 x 400m relay team, last year’s final a witness to our success in this event. This match was no exception, Patrizia, Gillian, Mandy and Nikki leaving a good 9 seconds between them and 2nd place. A great way to finish the evening!

Barbara Macanas
07801 149380

PS: If you are interested in joining a fun, competitive women’s Vets team, please get in touch.

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