Junior Records Tumble At Back to Track III

Photos from the day’s event can be viewed courtesy of Karen Harland at


DHAC’s third and final ‘Back to Track’ series finished on a high last Saturday as a total of 25 club records were smashed, including plenty from our Junior section. There were an astonishing 9 new records set in the U11 to U17 category, with another 2 in the U20 age group!

For this final Track & Field event of the season for DHAC, athletes could choose from a straight four lap mile, the 150m sprint and the long jump; and once again, the huge success of this ‘Back to Track’ series attracted athletes from all over the North East (and some from further afield!) This is how the day went for our Junior athletes…..

Under 11’s 150m

The first events of the day were a series of exhibition 150m races comprising wholly of DHAC Under 11 athletes. Split into three heats with boys and girls running together, our U11’s produced some impressive performances and loved every second of it! They ran their first ever 150m race with such enthusiasm and smiles on their faces; with these youngsters moving up through the ranks, the future of our Junior section is looking good!

Heat #1

The first heat couldn’t have been closer, with all athletes crossing the line with less than a second between them! At the tape it was George Togher who took 1st place by 0.37s, with a time of 27.59s. Well done George!

Heat #2

The next race was another close one but this time the honours went to Chloe Graham, in a fantastic time of 25.23s, which was also the first Club Record of the day. Great stuff Chloe, well done!

Heat #3

And the final U11 heat today was an all boy race; a few names here that you might recognise including the eventual winner, Rowan Steel. He’s already proved himself as a great endurance runner as a regular winner of the Junior Parkrun (remember those?) Today though, he showed us he can sprint as well taking 1st place in 22.96s, and the second Club Record of the day! Nice one, Rowan!

Under 13’s 150m

As the 150m is not your usual race distance, this was most of our athlete’s first time, so at least they were all setting themselves a new PB! We had three of our U13’s competing today in these mixed boys and girls races. First up was Lotti Graves; she’s loved the ‘Back to Track’ events producing some really strong performances. Well she was on top form again today, just beaten into 2nd place by less than 0.5s with an excellent time of 21:24s. Next, two boys who ran against each other at the last ‘Back to Track’ in the 100m; Oscar Fluen and Hugo Douglas-Reeves – if you recall, Oscar just beat Hugo to the line with very little between them. Well today, they were up against each other again and it was a virtual repeat of their first encounter; Oscar took 2nd place in 20.35s, with Hugo just a fraction behind in 3rd in a time of 20.97s. Well done to all three, fantastic results!

Oscar and Hugo battle it out to the line

Under 15’s 150m

There were four of our U15’s competing here today, the first of them was, Charlie Holdcroft, who’s now run at all three ‘Back to Track’ events. An excellent run from Charlie in the first U15 race, brought him home in 2nd place in a time of 23.15s. Next up was Krista Bissett-Brown, and yet another close finish. She was just pipped at the post after a fantastic effort; she took 2nd place, crossing the line in 21.34s, just 0.23s behind the winner! A great result, and she set a new Club Record as well, so she was chuffed to bits with that! It was great to see Ashton Harrison back in action again today. If you know Ashton you’ll notice he’s had a bit of a growth spurt over the last few months; it’s like he went into lockdown a boy , and has emerged as this strapping young man! And he certainly showed his strength today in the 150m, finishing 2nd in his heat in a time of 20.34s. He even beat super sprinter and former Darlington Harrier, Kate Williams to the line (now at Gateshead Harriers.) Our final U15 sprinter today was Benedict Davies. The only time he has run a 150m race prior today was back in 2018, at the NEYDL Inter-League match against Yorkshire, which of course, he won. He was 1st across the line again today with the fastest U15 time of the day, 19.32s – which was a new PB for Benny, and a new Club Record! Well done to all four U15’s. Top sprinting from you all!

Record breaker, Benedict

Under 20’s 150m

It’s not often we include the U20 age group in the Junior write ups – it’s that grey area between the Junior and the Senior age groups. But Kate Bower was our only U20 sprinter today, and she did set a new Club Record so thought we should give her a mention here. An excellent run finishing in 4th place in a time of 21.71s. Well done Kate!

Under 13’s Mile

The U13 Mile event was split into two mixed heats with four of our best young endurance runners taking part. For most of them it was their first mile event on the track, but they all ran with the confidence and determination of seasoned athletes. Three of them ran in Race 1, and the first of our Juniors to cross the line was Savannah Tarn; a terrific run from Savannah, finishing in 3rd place in an excellent time of 5:53.72. For Daniel I’Anson, this was his first taste of the ‘Back to Track’ events, and considering he’s still in his first year as an U13, he performed admirably. He crossed the line in 5th place here in 6:06.38. Just a couple of seconds behind was Freya Talman, also running her first track mile. Another excellent performance taking 6th place in 6:08.06. Finally, in Race 2 we had Zara Jones. Zara has run a couple of track mile races prior to today, so as always she was out to beat her previous best. She not only did that, she set a new Club Record of 5:43.52, the fastest U13 girl here today, and faster than most of the boys as well! A tremendous effort from all four, well done!

Junior milers, Savannah, Daniel and Freya

Under 15’s Mile

Like the U13’s, the U15’s were split into two races and DHAC had an impressive tally of seven athletes competing. In Race 1, the first Harrier to finish was Macy Kelly. She’s run a track Mile before at last year’s Tartan Games so she was out to improve on that time if possible. She worked hard as always and smashed her PB with a new time of 5:42.33 to take 5th place (3rd girl) and also claim a new Club Record as well! Not far behind was our all-rounder, Tori Buckley, and like Macy, she has competed in a track Mile once before. Tori’s still in her first year at U15, but ran with typical ‘Buckers’ grit and determination, to comfortably beat her PB by 15 seconds with a new best of 5:54.92 to take 6th place (4th girl.) Next up, Matthew Vest, also still a Year 1 U15, and running his first ever track Mile. A tough call today up against some older athletes, but he put in a great effort to finish in 9th place (3rd boy) setting a new PB just outside the 6 minute mark with 6:02.27.

More Club Records fall as Macy and Harry do the biz!

Onto the 2nd U15 race and four more of our exceptional young athletes here. Harry Lyons showed us he was on top form recently, as the only Junior Harrier to break 10 minutes for the 3k at Morpeth, and he’s still a Year 1 U15! Well he was at it again here in the Mile in what turned out to be the faster of the two heats. He smashed his PB by over 30 seconds with a superb performance to take 4th place in 4:57.91. This time he was the only Harrier to cross the line in under 5 minutes, and not surprisingly set a new Club Record! Incidentally, the three athletes who beat Harry, were all Year 2 U15s! Just a couple of places behind Harry was Alex Boyer. You can almost guarantee a strong performance from Alex, and today was no exception. Also still in his first year as an U15 athlete, he managed to beat his PB with new best of 5:08.04 to take 6th place. Next up, running his first ever track Mile was Louis Brett. Yet another Year 1 U15 athlete, Louis put in a tremendous effort to finish with an excellent time of 5:15.06 in 8th place. And finally, also running his first track Mile, was James Wilcock. Another great run from James who crossed the line in an impressive 5:18.74 in 10th place to round up some tremendous athletics from our U15’s. Well done to our ‘Magnificent Seven!’

Under 17’s/Under 20′ Mile

As expected, the U17’s and Under 20’s were grouped with the Senior and Veteran athletes, and we had and impressive 9 athletes competing in this category. There were 5 races, with our Juniors competing in 3 of them. First up, in the 2nd race was U17, Marissa Boon. She’s only been with the Club a couple of years and is still in her first year of the age group, but she’s already established herself as one of our best endurance athletes. Although she’s competed at National level on several occasions, this was actually her first ever track Mile, but as expected she performed to her usual high standard. Marissa finished in 2nd place, just beaten by one of the two men in the race, breaking the Club Record with a fabulous time of 5:31.86! Next up was Emily Vest, also running her first track Mile. It was an excellent run from Emily, just sneaking under the 6 minute mark, finishing in 5:59.60 to take 4th place (2nd U17.) It was a close run thing for the remaining three DHAC athletes who finished one after the other, taking 6th, 7th and 8th place, all running their first track Mile. The first of the trio to finish was Amy Atkinson; it was great to see her back in action again, producing a very creditable performance, crossing he line in 6:18.60. Not far behind was Eleanor Clulow, who was actually making her debut for DHAC today. A great effort brought her home in 6:24.01; welcome to the club, Eleanor, it’s great to have you on board, hope it’s your first run of many! And just a few seconds behind Eleanor was Olivia Douglas-Reeves. An excellent first run over this distance to take 8th place (5th girl) in a time of 6:37.37. Well done to all the girls, top running from all!

Moving onto the lads, Harry Wilson was the only DHAC Junior in the next race. With the exception of one U20 female athlete from Houghton Harriers, this was an all male race, with Harry up against mostly Senior and Veteran athletes. He ran exceptionally well to take 2nd place in a time of 4:56.37, smashing his previous PB by well over 30 seconds! The final Mile of the night was an all male race with three of our top young athletes in action, along with one Junior Coach! Adam Russell has been on top form recently and he wasn’t going to let much stand in his way tonight. Mind you, he was pushed all the way to the line by Junior Coach , Adam Mitchell! In the end it was Adam R who took 1st place after an outstanding run, just beating Adam M by 0.3s and breaking the Club Record with a time of 4:29.3. It was definitely the faster pace of the two races in this category, as there was just over 5 seconds separating the first 5 athletes. Adam’s twin brother, John Russell was the next Harrier to finish; another excellent run from John, and one that also beat the previous Club Record! He crossed the line in 5th place (3rd U17) in 4:34.91. And finally, the only U20 athlete in the race, Dan Boyer. As usual, Dan produced another impressive performance and although he finished in 9th place, it was still a fast time and enough to clinch the U20 Club Record with 4:44.49. Tremendous running lads, well done to all!

Top mile action from Adam & John Russell, Dan Boyer and Junior Coach, Adam Mitchell. Adam R went on to set a new Club Record

Long Jump

The Long Jump was split into four ‘Pools’ today, three with mixed age groups and one all U13’s. Some of the jumping was classed as wind-assisted, but pretty impressive all the same.

Pool 1 (Mixed) Some excellent jumping from U15, Ashton Harrison brought him a well deserved PB today with a best of 4.63m, beating his previous best by a whopping 34cm to take 2nd place in the Pool. The same can be said about U17, Emily Vest; she came 4th after a new PB of 3.72m, jumping 24cm more than her previous best. It was an exciting day for U15, Charlie Holdcroft as he tried out the Long Jump for the first time today. An excellent debut with a best of 2.94m

Ashton’s back and he’s flying high with a new PB!

Pool 2 (Mixed) It was only the second time U15 Harrier, Krista Bissett-Brown had competed in the Long Jump, but consistent jumping meant she beat her previous PB by 1cm, jumping 4.16cm to take 5th place.

Pool 3 – U13’s Back again after impressing us in the 150m were Hugo Douglas-Reeves, Oscar Fluen and Lottie Graves. This talented trio just keep on getting better and better and their jumping today was exceptional, with all three achieving new PB’s! Hugo jumped 4.47m and took 1st place in the Pool (2nd overall), with Oscar not far behind in 3rd with a best of 4.35m. Lottie was so close to beating that 4m mark with a best of 3.98m to finish in 5th place, but and excellent 2nd for the U13 girls.

Pool 4 – (Mixed) All U15’s apart from one U13 girl in this Pool. Three more of our Juniors back again after already competing today. First up, Tori Buckley, one of the most dedicated athletes I know. All her hard work payed off today with a new PB of 4.33m; an improvement of a very nice 25cm on her previous best to take 2nd place in the Pool and 2nd place overall. Matthew Vest was next with a best of 3.65m; not far off his previous best but enough to take 3rd place for the U15 boys. And finally, Savannah Tarn; another admirable performance with a best of 3.49m today, just 6cm off her PB and 4th place overall.

Some excellent jumping from all our Long Jumpers today, and tremendous to see so many making huge improvements in their PB’s. Well done to all!

Overall the day has been another resounding success, and it’s been fabulous to see so many athletes enjoying the competition, especially in this current climate! So a huge pat on the back for the organisers at DHAC, along with all the volunteers that were able to help out on the day, Karen for her superb photos, and not forgetting of course, the athletes themselves. Well done everyone!

…..and don’t forget, these photos are just a small selection. Check out loads more at the following link: – https://www.flickr.com/photos/93609093@N06/albums/72157716343652217

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