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YDL: Under 13/Under15 age groups. 3/5/14

Posted: 5th May 2014 by Chas Robinson

Following on from the success of the Under 17 and Under 20 athletes in last week’s competition, Ashford and Thanet AC’s younger athletes were hoping to equal their older colleagues in their first match of the Lower UK Youth Development League (U13 and U15 athletes).

Competing on their home track at the Julie Rose Stadium, the team would expect to do well, but as with the older team, there were some athletes unable to compete, which made effective selection difficult.

However, the incredible number of personal and season best performances clearly showed the determination and resolve of these young athletes. In particular, having to compete in unfamiliar and multiple events.

To add to the problems, the track athletes from all clubs had to deal with responding to a whistle instead of a gun, as a result of the starter failing to appear. Thanks to the efforts of all the team managers and officials, the match was able to proceed with the use of the electronic timing.

The team of 38 athletes amassed a total of 48 personal best performances and 8 season’s best performances. In achieving this, there were 50 top three individual places, which included 25 winners. In addition, the team took first place in three of the six relays.

Although the match went well, there were still concerns about the numbers of helpers as well as the size of the team. This is a situation which could cost a match; not something that Ashford AC or Thanet AC wants. The welfare of the athletes also has to be considered with regards to potential injury when competing in unfamiliar events and even burnout.

Fortunately, all the results were accepted by the league and performances will be documented on the Power of 10; very important considering the marks set by many athletes.

An excellent performance by the team and equally the Ashford organisational effort made sure the match went ahead with not too many issues, many thanks to everyone that helped on the day.

Tina Tappenden

James Bridge

Team managers

YDL: Division 2 South. Match 1. Sunday 28th April @ Central Park Dartford

Posted: 5th May 2014 by Chas Robinson

An excellent start to the track and field season for the young athletes of Ashford and Thanet; a composite team competing in the older age group of the UK Youth Development League. These Under 20 and Under 17 year old athletes compete in the Division 2 South league, made up of seven teams from Kent and Sussex.

Team manager, Tina Tappenden, was initially concerned that there were too few athletes to cover enough of the events in this full programme match. In the end, the weather was more threatening than the size of the team, as the youngsters amassed a huge point’s total of over 600 points to win the match by a country mile. They finished 160 points ahead of the Medway and Maidstone team, historically, always a good battle to win.

What wins matches is team effort and this was no exception, with many athletes contesting events they wouldn’t normally do. In addition, athletes expected to do well, also produced, with experienced athletes helping the less experienced ones, with lots of loud vocal support.

The effort brought much more than a match win as there were 39 personal best results and 11 season bests. In addition, the Team claimed 89 top 3 places which included 11 winners. An excellent effort and thoroughly deserved reward.

Men’s team: -

Lewis Smith, Harjan Khaira, Shaun Rose, Edward Miller, Cameron Amedee, Brad Sloan, Shaikh Zakariya, Ben Chapmen, Kyle Denning, Oliver Cooper, Ben Isaac, Jack Huxley, Alex Hardy, Ashley Bucham, Tyler Adams, Matthew Ottewill ,Joseph Briault, Adam Jacques.

Women’s team :-

Bethany Kimber, Ciara Ewart, Hannah Owen, Charlotte Tappenden, Eve Graham, Amy Clayton, Rebecca Turton, Grace Sullivan, Ellie Gooding, Ashleigh Newell, Chloe Williams, Mary Coleman, Sophie Clayton, Rebecca Cock.

Match result ; -

1.    Ashford AC  & Thanet  AC                611 points
2.    Medway & Maidstone AC                449 points
3.    Team Sussex                                       443 points
4.    Horsham Bluestar Harriers              393 points
5.    Dartford Harriers                               377 points
6.    Bexley AC                                            340 points
7.    Invicta EK & Paddock Wood AC       115 points

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