21st August News

THE WEEK'S NEWS 22nd August 2023

Fechin McCormick


Sonia Samuels

How does she do it? SONIA SAMUELS was only a handful of seconds from setting an L40-45 world record in the Newark Half Marathon. Her 72.28 was just 9 seconds off her best from the 2019 Barcelona HM, and now ranks her 3rdon the L40 UK All Time List, particularly impressive in that she's a Mum who's struggles with injuries. Her time consolidates her position as the UK's No.1 L40 half marathoner for the past three years.

Sonia holds the club marathon record from her 2:28.04 in the 2015 Berlin HM. To show how evergreen she is, seven years later and an L40 runner, she missed improving it by just seven seconds, in the 2022 Manchester Marathon.

Sonia has won a host of Junior and Senior Northern and National XC Titles and medals and represented Great Britain at 4 World Cross Country Championships, 2 European Cross Country Championships and 1 European Track and Field Championship.


Four Sale Harriers have been awarded the fantastic opportunity and great honour to represent England at the U20 Welsh International next weekend. They will experience top level competition to aid their blossoming careers. Congratulations to ANNABEL AMADIN (Shot), FREYA DOCKERTY (Sprint Hurdles), HERMIONE MASON (400m Hurdles) and STEPHANIE JONES (Long Jump) and to their respective coaches BOB GAISIE, JESS TAYLOR-JEMMETT, ALEX WORT and KEITH HUNTER.


Saturday's final Premier Division match of 2023 hosted at Longford Park was a day to inspire and remember! Observers of this league would have witnessed classy, competitive athletics throughout a buzzing day with a great crowd and atmosphere.

Sale Harriers will remember it as a landmark performance! Languishing bottom of the league, following dismal performances in the 2nd and 3rd matches, the club's 'back was truly against the wall' and only a miracle it seemed could prevent the club from relegation!

Don't anyone ever again underestimate Sale Harrier's ability to respond in adversity! Forty-five of the club finest (and a few evergreens like pole-vaulter ANDY ASHURST, ANNE CHINOY and DEBBIE Mc EVOY in the 3000m) showcased the club magnificently. From the day's forty competitive 'A & B' events, the club scored more than forty victories........far too many to list but you/we know who you are!

As a club Field Official I allowed myself occasionally to be distracted from my duties on the Triple Jump and Hammer, to witness the green-hooped vest snatching top places throughout the stadium. The men in their sprints notched up victory after victory, PHIL ROBERTSON & ROBBIE RIGBY were pure class in the 5000m as was BEN REES in the 1500m, SHONA WILKINSON even leapt to four PB's in the Triple Jump; HERMIONE MASON and OLIVIA BROWN were brilliant in the 400m, ELLISE FRYER-FRANCIS was a star in the High Jump and Javelin as was SEREN REDFERN in her three events and SHAUNNA THOMPSON, ANNABEL AMADIN and JASMINE RICHARDSON were awesome with their throws victories. KAMAL BENISSAD had great 2ndplaces in the Shot and Discus. HARRY LORD was as always a class act top scoring in the Pole Vault and Shot. Such was the club's dominance that by mid-afternoon, it had what seemed like an unassailable lead. The clean sweep of victories in the four relays resulted in possibly an unprecedented points score of 108 point over Wirral AC. Another of the day's big winners was SAM EBONINE who won the HJ with a 2 metre jump ( a big landmark in high jumping) plus he won the Long Jump ( 6m 45cm) and Triple Jump, alongside EMMANUEL ODUBANJO, a week before Emmanuel returns to his University in the States.

From the jaws of adversity in the Premier (NW) Division, Sale Harriers triumphed to an unimaginable 2ndplace. Without you it would have been impossible! Let it sink in how this match proved the club has both the resources and the goodwill to be very successful....and not just in adversity! A very special thanks to team managers JACK FROST & DAVE MARSH who rallied the 'troops' and to the club's T & F Officials who won maximum team points in all four matches. Wirral AC were the 2023 (Premier NW) League winners!