Juniors Bring Back Huge Haul Of Medals

With the arrival of British Summer Time our thoughts turn to longer, warmer days and, for many, the Spring Track Relays mark the beginning of the new outdoor season. This year the relays were scheduled alongside Round 1 of the North East Throws Festival, and so provided an exciting mix of both track and field action! Our juniors were out in force with 8 members of our unstoppable Under 13 squad, and the Thompson sisters providing the throwing expertise (along with a couple of U13’s getting in on the action!) Plenty to get through here so we’ll make a start with the field events before moving on to the relays…..

Lily and Rosie Thompson had been itching for the outdoor season to begin! Throughout the indoor season they’ve been restricted to just the shot putt, so were looking forward to getting back to their full repertoire of throwing disciplines……andthey did just that, both competingin three events.
Lily, in her first season at Under 15, favoured the shot, hammer and javelin. A great start for Lily in the shot; now up to the 3kg category, and a best on the day of 9.7m and a new PB! Also enough for 3rd place and the bronze medal. Next up the hammer throw, and another PB; beating her previous best by over 2m with an impressive 24.16m, and another medal! This time it was silver for an excellent 2nd place. And finally, the javelin, and another increase in weight, moving up to the 500g spear! It was Lily’s first competitive event at this weight so the distance was a little shorter than what she’s used to; 16.92m, but still enough to take 3rd place. That’s 3 events and 3 medals, what a fantastic start to the season! Well done, Lily.

Lily is awarded 1 of her 3 medals!

Not to be outdone, Rosie entered three events as well; the shot putt, hammer and discus. She’s now starting her second season at Under 17 so was hopeful of some good results today. In the shot, her best on the day was 9.67m. A little short of her PB, and not enough to beat her younger sister, but we won’t mention that! ☺ …..but it’s still early in the season so there’s plenty of time yet, and this was still enough to take 2nd place and a silver medal, so happy days! In the hammer throw, it was a very solid start with a best of 35.56m – we’re sure Rosie will improve hugely on this as the season progresses. Still enough for 2nd place and another silver! And lastly, the discus and another very promising start to the season; a best of 27.61m which is only 47cm off her PB….and another silver medal! So just like Lily, 3 events and 3 medals! What a haul, well done Rosie and well done the Thompsons!

a full house of medals for Rosie!

With our U13’s, Ashton Harrison and Tori Buckley recently attending the York Valhalla training session, they both wanted to try out their throwing skills in competition…..and as a testament to the Valhalla coaches they both came away with medals and PB’s!! Ashton plumbed for the shot and produced a fantastic best of 5.34m to take 2nd place, and a silver medal chucked in for good measure! Tori on the other hand, went for one of her favourite field events, the javelin. She produced some very impressive throwing and smashed her previous best with a new PB of 20.35, to finish in 1st place and take the gold.

Ashton put that extra training to good use

Well done Ashton and Tori, outstanding performances from you both.

more medals for Tori

Ashton also fancied having a crack at the long jump, along with one of our other top U13 athletes, Libby Hammond. Ashton managed a best of 3.66m. No PB this time, but it’s early in the season so there’s plenty of time yet. ☺ Well done though, a great effort! Libby, however, had springs in her legs today! She beat her previous PB with a jump of 3.55m, and then topped that again with a best of 3.70m to finish in 6th. A massive improvement on last season, so well done, Libby!


Some top performances in the field events from our juniors. If you were impressed with these, just wait and see what happened in the relays


Our Under 13’s managed to enter a boys team and a girls team into the 4 x 800m relays (with plenty more U13’s who weren’t there!) The two teams were as follows:
Boys Girls Elwood Kelley Libby Hammond Ashton Harrison Savannah Tarn Louis Brett Tori Buckley Harry Lyons Zara Jones
The weather had been fine all day up until about 10 minutes before the relays, then our young Harrier Heroes got a good soaking! As we couldn’t be at the eventourselves , Ashton’s mum, Jen,has put together this excellent little report on how things went.

“Both U13’s relay teams were incredible at today’s first meet of the season.
The boys went first with Elwood coming a very close second in the first leg. Ashton took them into first place with a great leadin the second leg and Louis extended this on the third leg, even starting to lap the other teams! He threw himself over the line to pass the baton to Harry who continued to lap all the other teams to secure an amazing win for the team.

Next up were the girls with Libby setting up the team very well in the first leg. Savannah was next and took the team from 4th place to within inches of first place as she handed over to Tori ,who created a massive lead before handing over to Zara. She extended the lead and again lapped the other teams for another fantastic win.

A lot of good things to come this track season from both teams.” Thanks Jen, a fantastic version of events, you’ve got the job! ☺ ….and one extra nugget of information that emerged once the official results were out – the boys’ time of 10:43.5 is a New Meeting Record!

We think you’ll agree today was an outstanding overall performance from all our Junior Harriers. Probably the first time we’ve had 10 athletes at an event, and every one of them has come away with a medal! It certainly highlights the talent we have at our Club and underlines where its future lies. So well done to everyone involved, you should be incredibly proud of yourselves

As a club, Darlington Harriers finished 10th overall which is a tremendous result considering we only had two teams competing! It would be great to see if we could get more teams across all age groups for next year’s event…..and remember, this is a rare opportunity for the juniors and seniors to compete as one team! #UTH!

Relay Champions
Above: our two winning 4 x 800m teams!
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