Record Turn Out for Junior Harriers

Colchester Harriers welcomed teams from Thurrock, Havering, Herts Phoenix, Colchester & Tendring and Waveney Valley when they played host on Sunday 3 June for the 3rd EYAL meeting of the season with a record breaking number of green vests competing.

On an incredibly hot day, with 100 Harrier Juniors in action, there were many fantastic performances from the youngsters with many PB’s set, resulting in a provisional position of 3rd place with huge points total of 682, surpassing the fantastic haul of 592 points last time out, which if not the highest in Harriers history, will be very close to it.

Also, the strength in depth of the young Colchester Harriers is beginning to show as there was only a handful of events where the club did not have full representation.

Outstanding performance of the day once again came from Milly Presland who broke her own club record in the Girls (U15) 1500m in a time of 4.54.4, having taken a strong lead from the gun, she just kept putting more distance between herself and the second placed athlete and is sure to be a dominant force at next week’s Essex Schools Championships. U17 Joseph Clarke was in amazing form,  swiftly carving out Triple Jump as his top event – gaining a huge PB with a distance of 11.50m – adding 67cm onto his last best.  Not content with that he added 10 cm onto his Long Jump to gain his second PB of the day with a leap of 5.89m.

Another notable 1500m performance came from (U17) non-scorer Danny Millward who in his first track outing in a year, smashed his previous best and won the race in a fantastic time of 4.20.1 winning by half a straight in front of the whole scoring field – let’s hope this youngster sees what an enormous potential he has a track athlete! The longer distances also brought an excellent performance from Sam Shippey (U15) in the 800m winning by an entire straight with a time of 2.05.8 which was significantly quicker than the scoring race won in 2.12.9.  Once his transfer has completed, Shippey will be another valuable member of the distance track team. There were personal bests for Niamh Higgins 5.39.7 and Daisy Hilson 5.45.8 in the (U17) Woman’s 1500m and also Emily Mcgill with 6.02.6 in the girls (U13) 1500m beating both scoring athletes on the day.


A complete set of new competition hurdles certainly gave the volunteer grounds people a headache, but their hard endeavours paid off for our fledgling hurdlers including debutant U15B Kai Chilvers who hadn’t hurdled since moving from Swansea and despite having trained in a middle-distance group with the club since September, made his competition debut over the 100m sticks. Certainly one to watch as he showed solid technique and strong last 20 metres, crosing the line in an impressive 12.6s to finish in second place. There were also PB’s for Holly Martin- Whymark  13.1s and Chloe Prosser 13.6 in the Girls (U13) Hurdles, whilst U15 girls Zion Ateba and Lilly Sillett earned valuable points and PB’s in their respective 75m races, with Ateba (12.6s) climbing 77 places on the Power of Ten.


A gutsy run by U13 Alexandra Bell- Cobbold in the 800m, saw her hold onto second place despite facing tough competition in the last 50 metres to knock a fantastic eight seconds off her previous best, with team mate Emily Henderson shaving 17 secs of her previous 800m best and Rachel Sale running well too . Thomas Palmer was again excellent in the (U17M) 800m leading from start to finish, Thomas also set a PB in the Men’s (U17) 400m to come home second in 54.2s.

In the shorter distances U13 Olivia Gillon provided excitement as she dug deep to over-take in the latter stages of her B string 100m race to finish in an excellent second place just outside her PB and later went onto lead from the start in her non-scoring 200m race to claim a new PB in 30.1s As did Jessica Scotchmer in (U13) 100m 14.8s & 200m 31.8s. There were PB’s for Lilly Sillett and Lauren Roan in the (U15) 100m –  Lauren went on to complete a hat trick of PB’s in the (U15) 300m 47.3 s and (U15) Long Jump 4.22m.

U17W sprinter Maya Rattray enjoyed an absolutely flying start and showed her consistent streak of determination and improving technique to hold on for a fantastic win to gain her first run under 13s for a new PB of 12.9s, whilst Ella Gray as B string also brought home maximum points having found another gear to hold off strong competition. Both girls then had to settle for second place finishes in their 200m losing their leads to Havering athletes who came from nowhere to clinch the titles however Rattray earned yet another PB of 26.8s.  Such is the strength of the Harriers girl’s sprinters, athletes now have to work hard to prove their place as one of the five available non-scorers let alone scorers.

Young Thomas Ashley took a good second place in the U13 Boys 100m. Noah Papley did the same in the boys B string (U13) 100 15.2s & 200m 31.0s.   Oliver Mitchell drawn in lane 8 claimed his first 4th place for the club to equal his PB as an U15 of 12.5s. George Lavender as B string used his rugby training to good effect to take an awesome win in 12.4s.

Daniel Jones (U17 M) having won his 100m earlier in the day in relaxed fashion (11.5s) then ran a phenomenal 200m; a strong start, lead to him nicely opening down the back straight to finish streaks clear of the field. Not to be outdone first year U17 Henry Lawes made the 100m look ridiculously easy, with a comfortable win adding to this year’s tally. His 200m saw him go head to head with training partner Jimi Sijuwola and for a while they were side by side, but Sijuwola was just not able to maintain and Lawes claimed his second win of the day.

As the heat intensified Harvey Daniels set a new PB of 41.2s in the Boys (U15) 300m as did his team mate newcomer Jack Banyard who ran well to clock 46.1s.  In the (U17) 300m Jennifer Palmer, struggling with the heat and a niggling injury was disappointed with fourth place but Mary Olayiwola came away with a third-place finish and a new PB of 44.1s.


It is great to see more strength coming through in the field events:  Olivia Simon took first place in the Hammer with 35.49m (a day before she had claimed yet another new Club Record with a throw of 36.10m to gain the English Schools Entry Standard at an open meet hosted at the Garrison)  she then set a new PB of 15.59m in the Girls (U15) discus and earned third place points.

There were PB’s set in the (U17) Discus by both Ziggy Lambton 17.06m and Keegan Berg 26.85m, both earning good points for the team. Both (U13) boys Discus competitors set new PB’s Harrison Leek with 10.56m and Bhramav Rajesh with a huge improvement of almost 5 metres to 12.63m. There were PB’s for Jimi Sijuwola (1.60m) and Jack D’eath (1.65m) – making his green vest debut – in the Men’s (U17) High Jump in a field of exceptional talent. Ateba, could only manage second place in her U15 High Jump, but gained a healthy PB in the Long Jump (4.35m).

Pole Vaulter Evan Crocombe (U15B) on his very first outing for the club broke the existing record to clear 2.40m, whilst Namh Higgins and Emily Swan both earned valuable points in this difficult event.

Eliza Betts continued her winning form to claim another top spot in the U17 W Long Jump with 4.87m. She also ran well to win her 200m Non-scoring race to sneak in a PB of 28.s. Megan Stevens set a new PB of 1.35 in the Woman’s (U17) High Jump. Whilst Eleanor Hopgood claimed another win in the U17 W Triple Jump with 9.72m  and Thomas Ashley also set a PB in the Boys (U13) High Jump of 1.25m. Charlie Palmer smashed his PB in the Boys (U15) Javelin by almost 10m, as well as gaining another PB in Discus 12.83m. Whilst in the Girls (U15) Kayleigh Hale 26.6m and Grace Gardiner 20.2m also both set PB’s in the Javelin as did Lily Waterson 24.89m in the Woman’s (U17) Javelin. In the Shot there were notable performances by both (U13) Girls Rachel Sale setting a new PB of 5.50m and Chloe Goddard also setting a new best mark of 4.44m. Aliyah Soames in the Woman’s (U17) Shot set a new PB of 8.17m whilst for the boys both (U15) competitors Micah Shaljean 6.12m and Charlie Palmer 6.83m set new PB’s.

Just as the black clouds started to spit, the fun of the relays erupted on the track:  There were brilliant wins for the U15B and U17M teams, whilst U13 G scorers showed real improvement by knocking a healthy chunk off their previous PB to take second place in 56.7s.  U15 Girls took third and having dropped the baton between second and third changeover the U17 W team managed to claw back to gain ground and finish fourth.


Next EYAL meeting will be on 8th July in Norwich.


For more photos please click on the link: with many thanks to Paul Hicks


Other Photos courtesy of Steve Betts, Joe Wilkins and John Hyland

Dan Jones Winner U17M 200m

Danny Milward makes a welcome return to the track

Harvey Daniels U15 300m

Ella Gray winner U17W 100m

Eliza Betts Winner U17W Long Jump

Milly Presland Club Record breaking 1500m

Zion Ateba U15G High Jump

Aliyah Soames U17W Javelin

Jack D'eath debut performance U17M

Lilly Waterson U17W

One Response to “Record Turn Out for Junior Harriers”

  1. Danielle Garrett

    Charlie Parmenter knocked 4 secs of his recent PB of his U13B 800M.

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