Central AC’s combined event athletes were out in force at the Emirates Arena in Glasgow as they competed against Scotland’s top all-rounders.
Under-15 Boys Pentathlon
Central Athletic Club saw three young male athletes joining a very strong field to tackle the Under-15 Pentathlon: Lewis Miller, Jamie Connor and Cameron Moore. Cameron was first up in 60 Metres Hurdles and ran strongly to finish second in his heat in a time of 11.86 seconds, nearly 0.3s quicker than his previous best set two weeks earlier. Jamie and Lewis were in the second heat: having hit a hurdle hard in the warm up, Lewis was a little more cautious than usual during the race and both he and Jamie finished a little shy of their personal bests in fourth and eighth respectively in a very quick heat, meaning that after the first event Lewis was fourth, Jamie ninth and Cameron 11th of the 15 entrants.
The second event saw the boys taking on the Long Jump. Cameron struggled a little with his run-up but still managed to get close to his personal best with his second jump of 3.60m. Jamie had a previous personal best of 4.11m but has been working hard on his long jump technique and it paid off with his jumps all in excess of his previous best, the furthest being 4.73m which was good enough for eighth place in the Long Jump. For Lewis this is his strongest event and with his first jump he equalled the club’s Under-15 indoor record of 5.64m, something that had not been achieved since November 2006. Despite his efforts he could not make the record his own with his following two attempts, but the jump was good enough to be the best jump of the day.
The third event for the Under-15 Boys was the High Jump. With first time clearance at the opening height for Cameron, and second time clearances at the next two heights, he was left trying to equal his personal best at 1.30m but it was just not within his grasp this time. Jamie also had a previous best of 1.30m set two weeks earlier and cleared this at his second attempt setting him up for a potential new personal best of 1.33m which he managed at his second attempt and that is where he bowed out of the event. Lewis had a previous best of 1.29m but that was set some time ago and practice had been going well so he entered at 1.39m with a first time clearance. He passed on the next height and cleared 1.45m at his first attempt before needing three attempts to clear 1.48m. Second time clearances at the next two heights placed him fourth for the High Jump before he bowed out – 1.54m being his best height and a fantastic new personal best.
The final field event was the Shot Put. Jamie’s timing was off with his first throw but two strong throws thereafter pushed him close to his personal best with a best throw of 6.25m with the 4kg shot for 11th place. Cameron has shown some really consistent throwing in this event over recent months setting a new personal best two weeks earlier of 7.43m. He again was twice over the 7m distance with his best being 7.42m for seventh place in the event. Lewis entered the event with a previous personal best of 8.14m but some good work on his glide technique saw him surpass this, throwing 8.80m with his first attempt and extending this further to 9.02m with his second for third place in the event.
Going into the final event, Lewis was fourth overall, Jamie 10th and Cameron 12th. Heat 1 saw both Jamie and Cameron tackle the 800 Metres. This is not Cameron’s favourite event but he battled hard to get within 0.5s of his personal best, but the other competitors were strong and this dropped him down to a final place of 14th with a total of 967 points. This is a better event for Jamie and he ran hard to finish third in the heat a little off his personal best but enough to secure 10th place overall with a total of 1,494 points. Lewis finished off in sixth place in his 800 Metres heat, knocking 10s of his previous personal best with 2:28.69 and keeping him in fourth place overall with a total of 2,243 points. Strong performances by all three Under-15 athletes as they all set lifetime best scores.
Under-13 Girls Pentathlon
Central Athletic Club had just one entrant in this age group, Alexandra Montgomery, who was taking on the Pentathlon for the very first time. The first event saw her tackle the 60 Metres Hurdles and she was understandably nervous having fallen two weeks earlier at the same venue when competing in the short hurdle race at the indoor league. But she had no reason to be nervous having worked hard on her technique: she finished fourth in her heat in a time of 12.00 seconds, a full 1.21s quicker than her previous personal best which she had achieved at the start of December. This placed her eighth of the 13 athletes entered. The second event was the High Jump – Alex came in at 1.04m and cleared it at her second attempt. She narrowly averted disaster at 1.07m taking three attempts to get over a height that is usually easy for her, before first time clearances at the next two heights put her on course for a personal best at 1.16m which she cleared at her second attempt before bowing out at the next height finishing ninth in the High Jump. Long Jump, the third event, was Alex’s weakest on paper. Competing against some very good long jumpers she entered with a personal best of 3.00m but she surpassed this in two of her three jumps extending her personal best to 3.12 finishing 12th in this event. The final field event saw her tackle the 2.72kg Shot Put where it was evident the long day was starting to take its toll upon her. A best throw of 5.12m is a little off her personal best but was enough to secure eighth in this event. After four events Alex was sitting in 11th place before tackling her least favoured event, the 800 Metres. She set out on the first lap cutting in after the first bend in fifth place. She then showed excellent maturity to settle into a pace she was comfortable with and over the four laps picked off those in front of her to finish second in her heat, smashing her previous personal best in a time of 2:53.62. The fourth fastest time overall meant she jumped from 11th to finish in eighth place with a total of 1,430 points. An excellent first outing at the Pentathlon for the Under-13 athlete and hopefully an experience which will encourage her to enter further combined event competitions in the future.
Under-15 Girls Pentathlon
Central Athletic Club had two girls contending the Under-15 Girls Pentathlon, Loren Stewart and Connie Bateman. Their first event was the High Jump and Loren had first time clearances at 1.35m up to 1.41m. It took two attempts to get over 1.44m and three to get 1.47m – it was clear she was having problems with her hip and could not push herself to get over 1.50m and she finished the event sitting in second place. Connie, with a previous personal best of 1.08m, was a little more nervous at tackling this event but training had been going well so she entered at a new best of 1.14m with a first time clearance before extending this further at her third attempt at 1.17m. Connie had three good attempts at 1.20m. The final one saw her clear the bar by a considerable height only for a trailing heel to catch it and knock it off leaving her joint 18th of the 19 entrants. Second event for the girls was the 60 Metres Hurdles and both were in the first heat and ran well. Connie came second in the heat, just 0.03s outside her personal best with 10.91s, finishing 10th quickest on the day. Loren was just behind her in third, a first outing at this age group over the hurdles. She ran 11.08s, knocking 1.5s off her previous best set over the lower Under-13 Hurdles, finishing 12th quickest on the day. Unfortunately the hip problem was not easing and she had to bow out of the competition at this point. Next for the Under-15 female athletes was the Long Jump. This is a strong event for Connie with a personal best of 4.45m. She again showed her consistent jumping with three jumps over 4m finishing on a season’s best 4.32m for sixth place. The final field event was the Shot Put and Connie again showed her consistency with three throws well over 7m, the best on the day being 7.79m just a little shy of her personal best and seventh best of the girls on the day. Going into the final event, the 800 Metres, Connie was sitting in 11th place and having never previously gone under 3 minutes this was going to be a gruelling event. It is not clear if it was the promise of a healthy McDonald’s on the way home (other fast foods are available) or the enticement of a sprints session instead of endurance when back at training the following week if she broke 3 minutes or a combination of both but she managed it – running 2:58.76 the 15th fastest time of the day meaning she finished 12th overall with a fantastic total of 1,982 points.
Under-20 Women Pentathlon
Central Athletics had two women tackling the Under-20 Women’s Pentathlon, Katherine Fowler and Ellen Montgomery, both in their first year at this age group. They also had some tough competition from England to contend with.
Both women were in the first heat of the 60 Metres Hurdles with Katherine breaking 10 seconds with a fantastic 9.94s for fourth in the heat at her first attempt at this age group and Ellen coming sixth in the heat knocking nearly 0.5s off her personal best with 11.22s, leaving them eighth and 12th respectively of the 13 entrants after the first event.
Next for the women was the High Jump. Ellen narrowly avoided disaster here clearing her opening height of 1.27m at her third and final attempt, but she was unable to improve any further on this height also finishing 12th in this event. Katherine fared a little better with first time clearances at her opening two heights, and needing a second attempt to clear 1.51m but could go no further and bowed out finishing ninth in the event.
Next event was the 4kg Shot Put. Ellen improved with each throw but was still short of her personal best with her best on the day of 6.89m for 12th in this event as well. Katherine also improved with each throw and has clearly been working hard on her throwing technique with a previous personal best with the lighter 3kg shot of 8.01m she surpassed this with the heavier weight to throw 8.17m with her final throw to place seventh in this discipline.
The Under-20 Women’s final field event was the Long Jump, where both Katherine and Ellen were struggling with their run-ups. Katherine managed 4.38m in her opening jump but fouled the next two finishing 11th in the event. Ellen fouled her first jump but managed to jump close to her personal best with her second with a 4.21m jump and this was the best of her jumps for 13th place.
Going into the last event Katherine was sitting 10th place and Ellen 13th. Both women ran in the first heat of the 800 Metres. Katherine ran strong to finish third in the heat in a time of 2:33.43 just over a second outside her personal best to finish ninth overall with a fantastic total of 2,814 points. Ellen also finished strong with a new personal best in her 800 Metres of 2:49.64 knocking just over 2.5s off her previous best, to finish with 2,032 points. With four English athletes ahead of them they were actually fifth and ninth respectively against Scottish opposition. Good performances by both women in their first year at this age group.
Under-20 Men Heptathlon
Ross Lawrie in his first year as an Under-20 athlete was the only Central Athlete to tackle the two day Under-20 Men’s Heptathlon event for the Club. Quite a challenge for someone who considered themselves an endurance athlete not long ago and had never attempted a combined event competition at any age group previously! The first event was the 60 Metres sprint – Ross was in the first heat and came third with 8.27 seconds knocking more than 0.5s off his previous best at this shortest of distances for eighth place out of the ninth competitors. The next challenge was the Long Jump. Having only jumped 3.65m last year Ross knew he was up against it with the calibre of athletes he was competing against but he performed really well with a starting jump of 4.84m, a second jump of 4.97m and finishing off with 4.83m. This was really good consistent jumping smashing his previous personal best and making sure he did not lose too much ground on the athletes around him. Next was the 6kg Shot Put and with a personal best of 8.75m throwing the lighter 5kg shot anything close to 8m was going to represent a good performance and Ross delivered all three throws over that target, the best being his last throw of 8.50m registering sixth place in this discipline. The final event of Day 1 was the High Jump which had an opening height of 1.47m so with a previous personal best of 1.35m this was always going to be a challenge. Ross struggled to get his run-up right but managed to clear the opening height at his second attempt. But he was not finished there, and at his third attempt he cleared 1.50m for a 15cm improvement on his previous personal best, finishing the day with four personal best performances. Day 2 opened up with the 60 Metres Hurdles and Ross safely negotiated them in eighth place with a time of 12.02s which he was more than happy with for his first attempt over the five 0.991m (39 inch) obstacles. The second event was the one he feared the most, the Pole Vault, and unfortunately, despite his best efforts, he could just not clear the opening height of 2.17m. Despite this setback he did not let this get to him and he ran the five lap 1,000 Metres final event in the fifth fastest time of 3:10.81 for a final total of 2,432 points and eighth place overall. A fine first attempt at the combined events competition.