Late withdrawals, and general no shows, let down the Morpeth Harriers Senior Track and Field squad,
i.e. those who did turn out, and their respective hard-working Team Managers David Swinburne (Men),
and Vina Desai (Women), at their second round Northern Athletics League Division 2E Match,
held at Jarrow’s Monkton Stadium on Sunday 3rd June 2018.
Because of this, the squad will now continue to face an uphill struggle in the latter half of the season in efforts to preserve their current league status, after finishing fifth of six clubs, headed by a very strong Gateshead Harriers.
Only North Yorkshire outfit Richmond and Zetland finished below Morpeth on the day,
and only a mere 41 match points adrift.
Best points haul in the Women’s events, came from the Field, courtesy of Under 20 athlete Bobbie Griffiths
and seasoned Veteran Claire Reid.
Griffiths won the A string Javelin, with an on the day best of 34.78m,
whilst Reid finished as second B string with 15.76m.
Morpeth Women’s Team Manager Vina Desai faced similar issues, having around only a dozen athletes at her disposal, including herself having to don her own competitive vest for two of the events.
One of those events was the Hammer, where she was a very effective
B string assistance to Claire Reid in the A string.
Whilst Reid finished second in the A string with a best of 31.58m, which was only a few centimetres adrift of her lifetime best, Desai produced 15.59m, to edge home third in the B string.
In addition to that excellent Javelin result alongside Bobbie Griffiths, the pair also lined up in the Discus,
where Reid produced an on the day seasons best of 29.49m to finish third in the A string,
with Griffiths finishing as second B string with an on the day best of 23.49m.
Reid teamed up again with Desai in the Shot Putt, finishing third in the A string with 9.37m,
whilst the latter finished sixth in the B string with 2.76m.
Under 17 youngster Kayleigh Wenn competed well amongst older rivals in the Long and Triple Jumps,
finishing fourth and third with respective efforts of 3.74m and 8.30m.
In the Women’s track events, it was a unique blend of Youth and Veteran status
that searched for valuable points for Morpeth.
The best result came in the 800m, where Holly Peck finished third in the A race in 2m25.0s,
and Helen King also finished third in the B race, posting a new personal best of 2m34.0s,
taking three seconds off her previous figures.
Lynsey Cunningham took on the unexpected role of A string sprinter, f
inishing fourth in the 100m, and sixth in the 200m.
In the corresponding B races, Helen King tackled 100m for the first time in her life, finishing fourth in 15.6s,
and youngster Holly Peck an excellent second in 29.2s, a lifetime personal best.
Helen King showed her team spirit thoroughly by also finishing fourth in the A string 400m,
posting a time of 70.9s, only a second adrift of her lifetime best.
Sue Smith finished fifth in the B string, posting a time of 86.8s.
In the longer Women’s events, the 1500m and 3000m, Morpeth had four athletes at their disposal,
one Under 17, One Senior, and two Veterans.
The youngest of the quartet Lauren Cummings, finished fourth in the A string 1500m, posting a time of 5m48.4s.
Jane Kirby backed her up well, by finishing third in the B string in 6m11.2s,
this being her first attempt at the distance.
In the 3000m A race, Lorna MacDonald finished third in 10m59.4s,
which for her was a new lifetime best of some magnitude.
Tackling a 3000m track event for the first time Carol Parry finished as fourth B string,
to add more much needed points to the Morpeth tally, which would have proved much
better had some of the clubs’ stronger athletes rallied to their Team Managers calls.