Youth Games Gold and Silver Medals for Keeran in Jamaica

Herne Hill Harriers athletes were relatively quiet in their competitive action over the Easter weekend, but their standout performance was seen in Jamaica on Saturday evening where a young athlete coached by James McDonald produced a big win at a major international youth games meeting attended by World Athletics President Lord Sebastian Coe.

Racing at the Carifta Games in the red and black colours of his mother’s birthplace Trinidad & Tobago, Westminster schoolboy Keeran Sriskandarajah claimed the gold medal in the under 17 boys 1500m final. 
Sriskandarajah ran a very tactically astute race, biding his time early on and then hitting the front just before the bell and running away to a clear win in a PB time of 4:10.58.

This competition for the under 17 and under 20 age groups between Caribbean countries provides invaluable experience for the athletes selected to participate, with similar protocols to the biggest senior international games and championships including the pre race call rooms.

Sriskandarajah raced again in the 800m final on Easter Monday and in a close three way battle he claimed the silver medal with a finish line dip that Colin Jackson would have been proud of. His time was 1:58.45.

On Good Friday back on Battersea Park athletics track the Comeback 5000#2 took place on a sunny afternoon, superbly organised by Belgrave Harriers as a very athlete centred meeting, a series of graded 5000m races for both club runners and international elites.

Two Herne Hill men were in action, with David Moyse and Mohammed Ismail opening their track seasons clocking times of 16:59.19 and 17:34.82 respectively. Both maybe ran their first km too quickly for their current fitness level, but sometimes you only find that out for sure during the race.

Arlo Ludewick, fresh from his super national road relay leg last weekend raced three times against some quality runners over Easter at the Isle of Man Festival of Running.

On Friday Ludewick was sixth in the 10km road race with 31:02. Then on Saturday he followed up with seventh in the Peel Hill Race with 21:13, before rounding off an excellent series with fifth in the 5km road race in 14:59. Ludewick was fourth male individual overall.

On Saturday Harriers also had first finishers in a number of parkruns around the country. Jeff Cunningham was first in Barrow in 17:29, with another M40 Ismail first in Brockwell Park in 17:35, the day after racing on the track in Battersea.

Charlotte Davies was first female on Clapham Common in 18:58, Bryn Reynolds first across the in Crewe in 18:13 and Katie Balme was first female at Exeter Riverside in 19:44.

Joe Elliott was fastest at Watermead Country Park in 16:26 and Esme Fillingham completed the list of winners at Wanstead Flats with 21:57. Suzanne Swaine also ran sub 20 minutes as fourth female at the very competitive Dulwich parkrun in 19:54. 

Geoff Jerwood