Multi-Event Magic!

We are indeed fortunate at Darlington Harriers, to have such a multi-talented bunch of juniors. Many of them can turn their hand to several disciplines under the athletics umbrella, which makes things very handy when it comes down to combined events. This was definitely the case last weekend when we had athletes competing at the North East/Open Pentathlon Championships at Jarrow, and the English Schools Combined Events Championships in Bedford. First up, the Pentathlon at Jarrow…..two competitions in one; an Open competition for any athlete from any club, incorporating the North East Championships. This is how the day went: –

The Team: L-R Lottie, Hugo, Krista, Ashton, Tori and Thomas

Under 13 Girls

For Lottie Graves, one of our most promising young athletes, this was only her second Pentathlon. Her first was the Tynedale Open exactly one year ago, and she’s come on in leaps and bounds since then. It was a magnificent all round performance, including a new PB of 1.34m in the High Jump, and a massive improvement in her overall points total. She finished in 3rd place from a field of 19 in both the Open and NECAA Championships with an impressive 2082 points. Well done, Lottie, an excellent result!

Under 13 Boys

Hugo Douglas-Reeves‘ first taste of the Pentathlon was at the North East Indoor Championships last year in which he finished 5th. He’s had a terrific outdoor season this year so as long as there were no injuries, he was hopeful of a good result for his first outdoor Pentathlon….which it was! With 3 PB’s, in the 75m Hurdles (13.83s), High Jump (1.43m) and Long Jump (4.80m), he was never out of the top 3. He moved into 1st place after the Shot Put and won the 800m to make sure he stayed there, for a well deserved 1st place in both the Open and NECAA Championships. A fantastic effort, Hugo, well done!

Under 15 Girls

It really has been a season of highs and lows for our Under 15 multi-eventer, Tori Buckley. She missed competing at several major events due to injury, then having to self-isolate, then contracting Covid herself! Mix that with the highs of being part of the Durham team at the English Schools Finals, and an outstanding weekend at the North Eastern Championships, it really has been a bit of a rollercoaster ride for our Buckers! Still feeling the after effects of Covid, she certainly wasn’t 100% as she went into today’s competition, but as usual, she would give it her all and see what happened. It was a great surprise when the day went as well as it did. With a 1st place in the Shot, a new PB of 1.31m in the High Jump all going towards an overall PB of 2547 points, to take 1st place in both the Open and NECAA Championships. Great stuff, Tori, another Championship title from our DHAC Juniors!

Under 15 Boys

It’s been great to see Ashton Harrison back in full flight again this season. He’s always been a budding multi-events athlete since his first pentathlon back in 2018, but he’s grown quite a bit since then as most of you will know, and this year he’s really made his mark. Today’s performance was the perfect way to round up an excellent season with PB’s in the 80m Hurdles (13.23s), Long Jump (4.85m), Shot Put (10.73m) and also his first 800m for two years (2:29.3.) The lead chopped and changed throughout the competition with the top 3 athletes always in contention, and as they went into the final event, the 800m, the title could have gone to any of them. Ashton pushed hard, crossing the the line in 2nd place increasing his total to 2069 points to take 2nd place overall and 1st place in the NECAA Championships. Yet another North East Champion, well done Ashton!

Along with Ashton was team mate, Thomas Hill, who was competing in his first ever Pentathlon. He’s still a Year 1 Under 15, but has shown great potential this season whether it’s sprinting, middle distance, jumping or throwing. He’s done the lot and continued to improve as the season’s progressed. Today was an excellent way to finish his outdoor season with PB’s in the High Jump (1.25m), an outstanding Long Jump (4.97m) and 800m (2:29.70.) This put him in 4th place overall and 2nd place in the NECAA Championships with a grand total of 1529 points. Well done, Tom, a fabulous way to start your multi-eventing!

Under 17 Girls

Finally, another young athlete taking part in her first Pentathlon, Krista Bissett-Brown. However, it’s not her first multi-events competition as she took part in the England Athletics U15/U17 Combined Events Championships earlier this year which, as an U17 athlete was a 7-event Heptathlon! She only joined the club last year, predominantly as a sprinter, but has gradually introduced new disciplines into her athletics and looks like she has the makings of an excellent multi-event athlete. She’s still in her first year at U17 so was up against many older and more experienced multi-eventers, so today was more about her own personal performance. So with PB’s in the 80m Hurdles (15.94s), and Shot Put (7.84m), and the other disciplines not far off her current PB’s it was an excellent all round performance. She finished 13th overall with 2098 points which is a brilliant start, so well done, Krista, we look forward to your next multi-event competition!

Overall an outstanding performance from our Junior Harriers, with 3 North East Champions which includes 2 Open Champions as well. It really does demonstrate the depth of talent we have in the Junior ranks, and with more to follow! Congratulations to everyone of you, and let’s not forget the coaches who helped them get there. A sterling effort from all!

For full results go to: –

…..meanwhile. Down in Bedford, probably our most decorated multi-events athlete, Charlotte Rutter was in action, representing the County of Cleveland. She was competing at the English Schools Combined Events finals; a full weekend of tough competition against the best in the country in a 7-event Heptathlon – 4 held on the Saturday and 3 on the Sunday. It’s a shame the two events clashed as Charlotte would definitely have been a contender for the North East & Open Championship titles. But you can’t be everywhere and I can understand the National competition taking priority. We’re pleased to report another fabulous performance from Charlotte, with PB’s in the High Jump (1.56m) and 800m (2:37.05) all adding to an overall PB of 4234 points. This was enough to take 7th place, which in a National competition, is an outstanding performance; and still in her first year as a ‘Senior Girl.’ Congratulations, Charlotte, a fabulous result!

More action from Jarrow…..

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