A small team of Biggleswade Athletic Club competitors took away two gold medals and a bronze from the Eastern Area Championships last Saturday. On a pleasantly warm but windy day in Cambridge, competitors of all ages and from all counties in the east of England were in attendance for a high quality competition.
First up for the club was Sarah Ridley in the shot put, who won the event at the Bedfordshire County Championships last month. Despite the blustery conditions and a slow start she roared through the field with a best effort in the fifth round throw to win the event.
After a brief rest she was then on the track for the senior women’s 100m final where she stormed down the track to claim the bronze medal and a PB of 12.74sec.
Sarah’s sister Hannah then took to the track for the women’s 400m final. Facing a tough field she fought hard and came home with a time of 65sec.
Morgan Webster was next on the track in the men’s 400m final. Starting steadily, he cruised down the back straight and entered the final bend in fourth place. With 120m remaining he held his nerve, and started to apply what he had been practising in training, and picked off the three athletes ahead of him in the final 80m to win by two clear metres in a new PB of 51.18. Tom Boggon came home behind with a time of 56.85.
The final Biggleswade AC Athlete to compete was Sophie Forbes-Laird in the Under 13 girls 200m, where she came placed fourth.
Charlie to the power of three: the Colworth Marathon Challenge
BAC’s Charlie Arnold came away with a host of prizes from the Colworth Marathon Challenge last weekend. The event is an annual competition of three races across three days that can be run as one-offs or in combination, with those opting for all three eventually covering the marathon distance of 26.2 miles. Held over testing routes at Sharnbrook near Bedford, the event attracts a strong local field as well as athletes from London and the south-east.
First up last Friday evening was a five mile race, taking in cooler conditions than seen in the daytime recently. A fast and furious race over an undulating course on concrete, stony tracks, public footpaths and woodland walks, Arnold completed it in 35min 17sec to finish 47th out of 345 runners, third in the Over 60s age category.
Lainey Stead also competed for the club in the race, crossing the line in a very commendable 50min 50sec.
The second race was on the Saturday in hot and humid conditions. This was over 8.1 miles of a very hilly cross country route, tackling uncut grass which pulled on the legs, and rutted woodland tracks, baked hard by the recent warm weather, ready to trip or injure the ankle of any runners not watching their footing. Arnold avoided the potential pitfalls to finish in 60min 49sec, 30th out of 225 overall, but the winner of his age category.
The final race on the Sunday morning was a half marathon (13.1 miles) over two laps of a multi-terrain course. Tired legs from the previous two days had to be put into action again to deal with the distance and the sharp inclines, especially in the last couple of miles. Arnold, along with his nearest challengers, found the course very demanding, but he managed to outrun them to finish in 1hr 43mins 59sec to claim another age category prize, and to win the overall Colworth Challenge award for his age with a total time of 3hr 20min 05sec and bring honours back to Biggleswade.