Mansfield Harriers junior section have been very active over the last two weeks competing in both the Nottinghamshire Mini League Sportshall event at the Oaktree leisure centre and cross country event at Worksop College.

At Worksop, the club had nine athletes compete. In the Under 11 boys race Jake Orr put in a much improved performance putting in his best display on grass this winter to be Mansfield’s first home in 11th place followed by the super consistent Matthew Young who was very close behind in 13th place. Third team member in was Alistair Homewood who has been ill for the last couple of weeks and showed fantastic team spirit to complete the race in 23rd place.  At under 15 level Sam Bentley continued his great run of form finishing 13th in the 4k race working through the field on each lap and Joel Whittaker-Naylor put in another good run for 18th place.

The Under 11 girls continue to show great individual and team performances with Beth Hamilton putting in her trademark strong race to finish 4th on the day. Alex Foster probably had her best race of the winter to finish 6th and Grace Manson put in another strong run and get three athletes in the top 10 by finishing 8th. The fourth member of the team was Emma Greasby who is now showing the benefits of regular training and put in by far her best run of the winter to place 28th.

Mansfield had 16 athletes compete at the Oaktree leisure centre Sportshall competition with once again the highlight being the performance of the Under 13 girls who produced 40 points out of a possible 42. Tania Smith won the 2 Lap in 23.4 the Standing Triple Jump with 6.88 metres and Speed Bounce with 72 reps. Ellie Sheppard threw an impressive 8.78 metres in the Shot, ran 24.3 in the 2 lap and 67 reps in the Speed Bounce. Sophie Brown showed great team spirit to do the 4 lap event to secure 3rd spot in 55.4 and had already come 2nd to Sheppard in the Shot with 8.07 metres and the Speed Bounce where she did 67. Bryony Evans competed ran the 2 lap in 25.3 and combined with Smith, Sheppard and Brown to comfortably win the relay. The team are also in a commanding position with one fixture to go.

Mansfield’s Under 15 girls were headed by Holly-May Spencer who came 2nd in the Speed Bounce with an impressive score of 80 and came 4t in the 4 lap with 54.3. Grace Angus finished 3rd in the 2 lap in 24.9 and tried the Shot for the first time coming 4th with 6.83 metres. The third competing member of the squad Kelly Seaman scored her points in the Standing Long Jump with 2.02 metres good enough to score a vital 5 points by coming 3rd.  Even without a full team the Under 15’s are lying second overall with one fixture to go only 3 points behind the leaders.

For the Under 11 girls, Tia Jones performed superbly running the 1 lap in 13.0 secs then did 40 reps in the Speed Bounce and 3.96 metres in the Standing Triple Jump. Tammy Smith scored in the Speed Bounce with 50 reps finishing 2nd and performed well in her other 2 events the 1 lap in 13.1 and 4.88 metres in the Standing Triple Jump. Debutant Isabelle Burlington competed in the Standing Triple Jump coming 4th with 4.98 metres and the 1 lap in 13.3. Grace Manson finished 4th in the 3 lap with 41.8 ran the 1 lap in 13.2 and Standing Triple Jump in 4.82 metres. Jones, Smith, Manson and Zoe Spencer then combined to finish come 2nd in the relay. Spencer herself had already done the 1 lap 13.8, Speed Bounce 38 and Standing Triple Jump 3.50 metres.  Ellie Worthy best event proved to be the Standing Triple jump in 4.40 metres and managed 39 reps in the Speed Bounce. Ava Blake made the team up competing running 13.9 in 1 lap, 44.7 in the 3 lap and 3.78 metres in the Standing Triple Jump.
Jake Orr competed in three events for the Under 11 boys running the 1 lap in 13.5 but then ran a superb 3 lap and 5.02 metres in the Standing Triple Jump.  Matthew Young was not far behind Orr in the Triple Jump with 4.94 metres and ran 41.3 in the 3 lap and performing well in the Foam Javelin throwing out to 16 metres. Ellis Blake ran 14.3 in the 1 lap and did 32 in the Speed Bounce, and his younger sister Emmie also competed in the 1 lap in the junior races.

Two of Mansfield’s track runners who are looking for a successful indoor season raced over 800 metres at the English Institute of Sport in Sheffield. Junior international Bethany Williams and veteran track star Jonny Lowe train together regularly on the track and roads but this was the first time the two had raced against each other. After a close battle over 4 laps Williams edged away in the last 100 metres to run 2.16.55 against Lowe’s 2.16.82. Deep into winter training this bears very well for the championship races both will run in the new year.

On the roads Garry Hodgkins ran at the Clumber Park 10k event and managed to run a new best time of 41.55. Hodgkins has shown rapid improvement this year and will be looking to run even faster in 2017 as he reaps the rewards of structured training.

Picture below of Under 11 Jake Orr.