National Road Relays - Sutton Park
Sale backed up their Northern triumph with an impressive 17th at a sun-soaked National event at Sutton Park. Take nothing away from the team here - the competition on the national stage is intense, demonstrated by Swansea winning by a cushion of more than 4 minutes. This is one of the country’s nastiest road courses, and no man in green and red left a shred of energy out there, giving 100% up gruelling hills and in scorching heat.
Nigel Martin earned his chocolate Lindt rabbit with a blinding 27:05 on a stacked first leg, coming home in 16th. With the rabbit slowly melting in the sun, Niall Brooks tore into the field with a 15:21 that was the 9th fastest short leg of the day, bringing Sale into 6th place.
Matt Barnes’ 27:46 kept Sale well in the mix in 7th, before Euan Gilchrist’s 15:57, the 10th fastest on his leg, handed over to Jo Vis with Sale in 8th. With the heat rising relentlessly, Vis whizzed around his 9k in 28:03, giving Alan White the chance to hold on to a top 10 place. White’s 16:26 made the top 10 on his leg, clawing back a place in the process, allowing Adam Sciacca to further cement his place in the team with an impressive 28:14.
Daniel Kashi ran a solid 16:45 to keep Sale in 11th, followed by the most selfless performance of the day. Not only did Callum Rowlinson pull on the vest less than a week after the Manchester Marathon, but he grafted through a long leg in 29:37. Maniac. Alex Bradford’s 17:06 proved he was well worth his promotion from the B team at the Northerns. Despite James Wignall’s training focus switching to 1500m, he took one for the team with a 28:58 that created a vibrant flame up the final hill.
Matt Beacock then finished the job with a 17:49 that is well under his ability. Stumbling through the line and waking up in the medics’ tent, he’s first to admit he’s not 100% fit, but that didn’t stop him burying himself for the team cause, pushing beyond his limits to capture precisely what team relays are all about. Add this to victory at the Northerns, and a 4th place finish at the National Cross Country Championships, and its clear things are heading in the right direction for the senior men.
Forgive the writer bias here, but this is exactly the attitude needed to get the club back at the pinnacle of track & field competition.
The ladies managed to get out a complete team this time ably led by Sarah Douglas who finished her long leg in 21st position. The rest of the team were Alice Ball, Tracey Taylor, Anne Chinoy, Julia Reynolds and Ruth Lindsey, finishing in a creditable 35th place. Well done.
Posted 13/04/2017 15:42