Under-20s and Under-17s report
Central AC had a huge representation at the Scottish Combined Events Championships at the Glasgow Emirates arena. In the last big domestic event before the venue hosted the European Indoor Championships, 24 of Central’s athletes tested themselves across the disciplines of running, jumping and throwing.
Central’s challenge was led by the older athletes in the Under-20 and Under-17 age groups. Matthew Chandler was Central’s most experienced competitor with numerous internationals and medals at Scottish and UK level over the years. The 18-year-old from Balfron was contesting the Under-20 Men’s Heptathlon, the indoor equivalent of the decathlon, which is contested over 2 days. He opened well with 7.58s for the 60 Metres and then set an excellent personal best 6.77m at Long Jump to go fifth on the club indoor all-time list. Another personal best 10.69m came at Shot Put then a decent 1.83m High Jump saw Matt in third place at the end of the first day. He opened well in the second day with a near personal best 8.68s at 60 Metres Hurdles which moved him up to second place overall. He followed this with an excellent season’s best 4.17m at Pole Vault to consolidate his second place position then finished with a personal best 2:49.35 minutes at 1,000 Metres. He was unable to catch Scott Connal of Whitemoss, who won in a new Scottish junior record, but Matt was rewarded with a silver medal and a superb personal best 4,882 points to go seventh on the Scottish all-time list for the age group.
Erik Escala was contesting his first ever Heptathlon in the Under-17 age group. The 16-year-old from Dunblane started strongly with a big personal best 7.68s in the 60 Metres then followed this with a 5.45m Long Jump. He threw 11.11m in the Shot Put which, while an excellent distance, was down on the 12.43m personal best he set the week before to win a medal at the Scottish schools. However he made up for this with a big High Jump personal best of 1.80m to place him fourth overnight. Further personal bests followed in the 60 Metres Hurdles (9.13s) and Pole Vault (2.87m), a relatively new event for him. He rounded off his weekend with another personal best 3:15.94 at 1,000 Metres to finish an excellent fourth place, just outside the medals, with 3,889 points.
Molly Cornes was taking on the Under-17 women’s pentathlon. The 14-year-old from Balfron had a cold to contend with but stuck to the task as she opened with personal bests in both the Shot Put (8.72m) and 60 Metres Hurdles (10.01s). She produced another strong Long Jump (4.98m) then followed this with an excellent personal best clearance of 1.60m in the High Jump which places her fifth on the club women’s indoor all-time list. By the 800 Metres her illness started to tell leaving her unable to challenge for the medals but she finished in 2:47.12 for a final score of 2,940 points. This was a 400 point personal best but such was the high standard this was only enough for seventh overall. Matt will look to build on this and Molly and Erik will look to learn from their experience and hopefully they will all challenge for medals in the summer.
Central had a large contingent of 11 Under-15 boys and girls taking part in the pentathlon, many of them for the first time.
In the boys’ event, Ruaridh Burns and Tyler Hunter were both novices at the pentathlon. Ruaridh had a strong start in the Long Jump with a personal best 4.90m for fifth place while Tyler jumped 3.96m. In the 60 Metres Hurdles it was Tyler’s turn to impress in his first ever hurdles race as he won his heat in 10.63s with Ruaridh running 11.20s. In the High Jump Tyler cleared a personal best 1.34m then Ruaridh jumped 1.37m in his first ever attempt at the event. The Shot Put was a new event to both of them, Tyler threw 6.16m and Ruaridh 7.12m. In the final 800 Metres event Ruaridh showed his form in his specialist event as he ran clear in his heat to win in an excellent personal best 2:18.70, the second fastest time of the day with Tyler following in 2:55.98. At the end Ruaraidh scored 1,781 points for a respectable sixth and Tyler 1,244 points for 10th.
Central had an incredible nine athletes competing, all setting a host of new personal best performances. Top finisher was Katherine Fowler. The day didn’t all go to plan for her as her opening High Jump of 1.28m was 20cm short of the 1.48 that earned fifth at the recent individual Scottish champs. However she recovered well to win her 60 Metres Hurdles heat in a personal best 10.79s then set further personal bests at Long Jump (4.64m) and 800 Metres 2:36.95 and a season’s best Shot Put (6.03m) to score 2,305 points for 16th. One place behind was Louise Carroll who opened well with 1.40m at High Jump then set personal bests at Long Jump (4.49m), Shot Put (7.26m) and a season’s best 800 Metres (2:52.04) for a personal best score 2,299 points for 14th.
Amy Cully set personal bests at 60 Metres Hurdles (11.12s) and High Jump (1.31m) and season’s bests at Long Jump (3.86m) and 800 Metres where she was a clear heat winner in 2:29.73 to score a personal best 2,237 for 18th place.
For Ellen Montgomery there were personal bests at 60 Metres Hurdles (10.85s), Long Jump (3.86m) and Shot Put (7.20m) for a personal best score of 1,863 points. Ella Wilson had a fantastic start in her first ever pentathlon winning her pool in her High Jump debut with an excellent jump of 1.43m. She followed this with personal bests in 60 Metres Hurdles (12.51s) and Shot Put (7.44m) along with a 4.08m Long Jump for a score of 1,840 points.
Brogan MacMillan set personal bests at 60 Metres Hurdles (12.52s), Long Jump (3.48m) and Shot Put (6.01m) for a score of 1,490 points. Megan Dunlop produced personal bests at 60 Metres Hurdles (12.52s), High Jump (1.34m) and Long Jump (3.23m) for a personal best score of 1,489 points.
For Molly Sullivan and Zosia Paddon every event was a new experience for them. They completed all the events and finished with scores of 1,133 for Zosia and 1,014 for Molly. All in all the Under-15s set 47 new personal bests including 22 new events attempted, an excellent result for them all.
Central had 10 Under-13 athletes taking part every one of them attempting a pentathlon for the first time ever. The boys’ event featured Dylan McCulloch, Henry Crossley and Alex Dunlop. Dylan opened well in the Shot Put with a personal best 6.39m to go into fourth place. Alex threw 4.64m and Henry 3.90m. In the hurdles Dylan was a clear winner of his heat in his first ever attempt at the event with an excellent 11.16s, the third fastest of the day, to move him into third place. Alex finished in 13.72s and Henry 15.13s. In the High Jump there were personal bests all round as Alex and Dylan cleared 1.08m and Henry 1.02m. Further personal bests came from all three on the Long Jump, Dylan jumped 4.14m for third place in the event, Henry 3.15m and Alex 3.01m. In the final 800 Metres event Alex set a personal best 2:48.17 to place second in his heat and finish on a score of 559 points while Henry finished in 2:57.85 for a final score of 377 points. As Dylan was in fifth place he ran in the final race for the event leaders to decide the medals. He was unable to catch the top three, but still ran a decent 2:43.67 minutes which gave him a final score of 1,143 points and maintained his fifth place position, an excellent result against the best in Scotland.
The girls’ event saw a big field of 37 athletes taking part. Danielle Abel led the Central athletes, clearing 1.20m at High Jump and winning her heat comfortably in the 60 Metres Hurdles with a personal best 10.54s. She then set a personal best at Long Jump (4.06m) and 800 Metres (3:03.12) to finish with a score of 1,840 points for 15th overall. Just behind her was Jessica Hanson who started with an excellent 1.29m High Jump then ran 11.32s at 60 Metres Hurdles, threw 5.68m at Shot Put, jumped 3.78m at Long Jump and ran 3:00.34 at 800 Metres to score 1,756 points for 17th. Niamh MacKinlay set personal bests at High Jump (1.11m), 60 Metres Hurdles (12.54s), Long Jump (3.43m) and was a clear heat winner in the 800 Metres with a personal best 2:44.79 to score 1,394 points for 27th. Loren Stewart opened with a big personal best at High Jump with 1.23m then set a season’s best 4.73m at Shot Put and a good 3.85m Long Jump to score 1,302 points. Emily Guest cleared a personal best 1.17m at High Jump but her hopes of a good score were dashed when she was unable to finish the hurdles. She stuck to the task and set personal bests at Long Jump (3.96m) and Shot Put (6.39m) to score 1,256 points in spite of her no score in the hurdles.
Connie Bateman set personal bests in High Jump (1.08m), 60 Metres Hurdles (12.62s) and Shot Put (4.39m) for a score of 998 points and Alice Cameron long jumped (2.89m) and ran 3:15.6 at 800 Metres on the way to a score of 800 points.
The Under-13s set 40 new personal bests including 25 events attempted for the first time, an experience they will all learn from.