NINE IN ESSEX ACTION AT A CHILLY OXFORD
Nine club athletes wore the red vest of Essex with pride as the South of England Inter Counties Cross Country Championship s took place at an icy Oxford course on Saturday. Summer Smith’s excellent winter continued as she was a fine fifth place in the Under 13 girls event, clocking 11m 13s to lead Essex home to team silvers. Liam Battrum also came away with team silver for Essex finishing 17th with 10:53 in the Under 13 boys’ race. Freddie Rowe and Findlay McLaren also made the podium for Essex winning Under 15 boys’ bronze. Freddie led home the Essex squad in sixth (12:26) and Findlay (12:42) was a good 12th. Rosie Warner was 83rd in the Under 15 girls race (15:33) and Charlotte Evans came home 46th (18:42) for the Under 17 Women. Ginte Bailey was 28th for the Essex seniors clocking 24:27 and Maddie Barker was 22nd in the Under 20 event, as Rebecca O’Rourke was 49th with 29:10. Posted: 12th December 2022.
KIERAN JOINS UKA PARALYMPIC FUTURES ACADEMY
Congratulations & well done to Kieran O'Hara who has been added to the UKA Paralympic Futures Academy. Kieran has been identified as an athlete who has potential to achieve success in future Paralympic Games. Through a series of training camps and education workshops, the Paralympic Futures Academy aims to support his athletic development by helping him to identify which areas to work on to make the transition to becoming an elite senior international athlete.
His personal coach Pat Gahagan is also invited to join him on this journey. This is a great honour & recognition of Kieran's hard work & progress. Posted: 9th December 2022.
GREAT NIGHT FOR CLUB AT LONDON AWARDS
It was a memorable night for the club at the England Athletics London Region 2022 Volunteer Awards as Club members were winners of three awards and runner up in a fourth category. Level 4 Field Official Rachel Kerr was a winner of the Inspiring Officials award for her efforts in supporting officials and her "experience and professionalism .. beyond her young age". Club Secretary and former Chairman Tony Benton won the award for Club Leader of the Year, recognising his "unquestionable" commitment. The third winner was Trevor Wells in the Services to Athletics category, recognising his involvement in the sport since 1970 and someone who goes "above and beyond what is expected of him to support others". Also recognised was Katie Ennis who was runner up in the Newcomer to Volunteering category as someone who actively looks to develop her skills. AS a club we are very privileged to have such dedicated individuals as part of our fantastic team of volkunteers. REPORT Posted: 19th November 2022
WARREN ROE (1937-2022) RIP
We are sad to report the passing of Warren Roe at the age of 85. Warren's career in athletics started with Ilford AC, becoming one of the leading distance runners in Essex and being ranked nationally in 1962 at the mile (4:12.7) & three miles (14:05.8) but he then retired from competition after family commitments took over. After bringing his two sons Stephen & Christopher to the club in the 1970s, Warren decided to take his coaching badges and lead a group, and also made a return to competition as a veteran - he still holds the club M40 3000m record set in 1979. He soon achieved success, coaching David Caton to English Schools steeplechase gold in 1984 and many other successes followed. Warren progressed to become the main distance coach for senior athletes in the 1990s, coaching many leading middle-distance athletes in the club.
Despite increasing ill-health Warren has continued to coach until his 80th birthday in 2017 when he decided it was time to retire. The club committee recognised his long and dedicated service by the purchase of a new garden bench which was presented to Warren and his wife Pam at their Hornchurch home. Perhaps unknown to many, he was also an athletics historian writing "Front Runners: The First Athletic Track Champions 1857-1875". Our condolences to Pam, Stephen & Christopher and other family members on their loss. Posted: 8th October 2022
THREE IN ESAA COMBINED EVENTS ACTION
Three club athletes represented the Essex Schools team in the national schools combined events championships at Bedford last weekend. Ayo Babatunde finished 11th in the senior boys’ decathlon after being in fifth place after seven of the ten events. He was fastest in the opening 100m event with a wind assisted 11.13s and threw the shot further than the other competitors, with his 13.25m put being the third best ever by a club U20. PBs in the 110m hurdles and discus opened Day 2 but after a token pole vault clearance, and failing to make a mark in the javelin, saw him jog home in the 1500m to finish eleventh overall with 4782 points tally. Ruby Tillson recovered from a poor start to finish 15th out of over 40 competitors in the Inter Girls heptathlon. Disappointing results in her usually strong hurdles and high jump events and the shot saw her laying down in 26th after three events, before a 200m PB pulled back a place at the end of day 1. Her long jump was just short of her best before adding 4m to her javelin PB and running a solid 800m placed her 15th overall and helped the Essex team edge past Kent into third place. Maggie Smith was 29th in the Junior Girls pentathlon, with a score of 2514 points, adding 75 points to her previous best and improving her high jump best. Posted: 22nd September 2022. Pic: Essex Schools Athletics Association
MEDALS AT SCHOOLS GAMES NATIONAL FINALS
Four club athletes contested the final national event of the summer at Loughborough, the Schools Games Finals, with two of them winning medals. Ruby Tillson was the first of the four in action, placing a fine fourth in the opening girls' event on Friday morning, the high jump with her 1.60m clearance, her best placing in a major final. English Schools javelin bronze medallist Bobby Williams was outside the medals on this occasion as his 55.23m last round effort placed him sixth. Steph Okoro’s medal winning streak continued as she got Saturday’s track session under way with victory in the 300m hurdles event. Her 41.86s clocking was not only the fastest time in the UK this year but also a new games record, improving the previous best dating back to 2006. England Athletics 80m hurdles champion and English Schools runner-up Paris King hopes of improving the UK U17 record, after going close last week, were dashed as she hit the first hurdle hard and did well to fightback to place third, in 11.25s to win bronze to complete a full set of national medals. There was some small consolation as she was part of the Delhi All Stars winning 4x10m relay teams, while Steph won silver in the 4x300m relay with Team Melbourne.
Posted: 4th September 2022.
KIERAN & REBECCA WIN ENGLAND ATHLETICS MEDALS
T20 category Paralympic athletes Kieran O’Hara and Rebecca O’Rourke both celebrated podium places at the England Athletics Senior and Disability Championships at Bedford this weekend. Kieran struck gold in the Men’s Ambulant 1500m after a long run from home in a time of 4m 11.15s, while Rebecca’s sprint finish saw her cross the line first in 5m 40.64s, but she Had to settle for silver as she lost out on gold to third place visually impaired finisher Jade Smith under the Raza Points Score system which adjust performances for the various Paralympic categories.
Posted: 1st August 2022.
ENGLAND ATHLETICS UNDER 23 SILVER FOR PBQ
Peter Brinton-Quinn came within a whisker of winning javelin gold at the England Athletics Under 20 & Under 23 Championships at Bedford. His final round throw of 63.90m moved him up from fourth into pole position only for early leader Josh Foot (Orion) to take gold with the final throw of the competition. It was the second national medal for the Romford 9year old, who won bronze at last year’s English School’s Championships. Jacob Blanc was fifth in the Under 20 Men’s 400m hurdles final with a 54.73s clocking, ad Adelaide Thatcher-Gray was seventh in the Under 23 Women’s javelin, with her final round 37.23m.
Paris King and Bobby Williams made their international debuts for the English Schools team at the Schools International in Belfast on Saturday. Paris was third in the 80m hurdles while Bobby was fourth in the javelin. Posted: 18th July 2022.
MEN DEFEND SPITFIRE SCRAMBLE 24-HOUR TITLE
The Havering squad retained the title which they had won in 2019 as the Spitfire Scramble 24-hour relay event returned to Hornchurch Country Park after a two-year COVID enforced break. The event started at 12 noon on Saturday and ended at 12 noon on Sunday with temperatures only dropping just below 20 degrees and during that time the teams ran multiple legs of the 5 ¾ mile mixed terrain course. “Squadron Leader” Martin Chester led off the eight-man Havering men’s squadron of Barry Smith, James Blogg, John Whitehead, Jason Crispin, Jason Lendon, Gavin Maley and Luke Chester. The team logged up 39 laps – one more than last time - with James Blogg fastest at 34:08 and a team average of an impressive 37:26. Morgan Campbell led off the mixed team with a 39:10 leg which proved to be the team’s fastest and despite the valiant efforts of Graham Hogan, Stephanie Phillips, Jon Hart, Robyn Matson, Steve Walker and Paul Berrett they were just edged into second, after completing 33 laps.
Posted: 18th July 2022.
TEN IN ESSEX U20 & SENIOR ACTION
Ten club athletes wore the red vest of Essex with pride at the Southern Inter Counties at Horspath Stadium, Oxford on Saturday. Peter Brinton-Quinn won the senior javelin and Hal Hutton won the Under 20 competition, adding almost three metres to his best throwing 55.80m, the sixth longest ever by a club U20. Patrick McLean-Tattan won the Under 20 discus, with his first 40+m throw, for fourth on the all time list and he also won the shot. There were second places for Ridwan Salaam in the U20M 100m with his fastest ever clocking, 11.06 wind aided, and was also second in the long jump, as Ronnie Adoma ran 22.77w for runner up in the 200m. Also second was U20 Alex Ford who was runner up in the senior ‘chase, and Natalie Sewell in the U20W 800m. Shane Hart improved his official 5000m PB in sixth and Hannah Yexley was fourth in the U20 discus,
Posted: 13th July 2022.
KIERAN SILVER AT UK CHAMPS & WORLD TRIALS
Kieran O’Hara won silver in the Paralympic 1500m event held as part of the British Championships and World Athletics trials at Manchester this weekend. Running on Sunday Kieran clocked 4m 12.67s behind Scottish winner Steven Bryce ahead of Epsom’s Daniel Wolff.
Also in action at Manchester was 17-year old 400m hurdler Jacob Blanc who competed in his first senior championships with distinction on Friday as he trimmed his best to 53.47s ahead of three faster senior athletes. Club senior 400m hurdles record holder Tom Pitkin was also in action over the barriers winning bronze in the Irish Championships in Dublin with a season best of 51.93s. Posted: 28th June 2022.
STEPH GB CALL AFTER U17W & U18W RECORD
Stephanie Okoro will celebrate the end of her GCSE exams when she joins the Great Britain Under 18 squad after being selected to compete in the 400m hurdles at the European Athletics Under 18 Championships in Jerusalem. The Romford 16 year old earned her call up in style by winning the trial event at Bedford on Sunday in a new British U17 and U18 record of 58.65s, to beat the previous mark which had stood since 2011. Her time took two seconds off her best, set the previous weekend, and ranks her joint first in Europe in the age group. It also improved her own club U17 record and smashed the club U20 and senior 400m hurdles mark of 59.9s set by Denise Kiernan in 1978.
The 40 strong GB team will fly out to Israel on Friday 1 July ahead of the event which takes place on 4th to 7th July and Stephanie will have to navigate a heat, semi-final and final on successive days in order to challenge for a podium place. After receiving confirmation of her selection Stephanie said “I’m thrilled to be selected to run for Great Britain in the 400m hurdles at the European Under 18 Championships in Jerusalem. I’m really looking forward to the experience and I hope it’s the first of many GB call ups!”
At the same Bedford event Ronnie Adoma just missed out on qualifying for the U18 100m trials final, with his 11.16s clocking. Posted: 20th June 2022 & updated 22nd June 2022.
PATRICK SECOND IN EA U18 DECATHLON
Patrick McLean-Tattan excelled in his first decathlon, finishing second in the England Athletics Under 18 competition at Bedford this weekend. Patrick posted PBs in the eight of the ten events, winning the javelin, and finishing second in the 100m, 400m, 110m hurdles, discus and the final event the 1500m where his strong finish saw him overtake William Reid to secure runners up spot by 10 points, with a score of 5895 points as Finn O’Neill comfortably won gold:
RESULTS: 100m: 11.65s; LJ: 6.10m; SP: 12.92m; HJ: 1.59m; 400m: 53.47s; 110mH: 16.67s; DT: 42.61m; PV: 2.80m; JT: 48.84m; 1500m: 5:05.51s. Posted: 30th May 2022.
STEPH OKORO BREAKS CLUB U17W 400mH RECORD
Three club athletes were in action yesterday at the prestigious Loughborough International Games. The highlight came from Stephanie Okoro who broke Denise Kiernan's club U17 Women’s 400m hurdles record, set back in 1977. Steph crossed the line in a guest race in 61.22s, a tenth inside the old mark but outside the UKA's European U18 qualifying mark of 61.0s which she aims to better over the next month. Kieran O'Hara clocked in second fastest ever 1500m with 4m 11.04s in finishing third in a Paralympic athletes event, while Jacob Blanc's hopes of improving the club U20M 400m hurdles record faltered when he hit the sixth hurdle hard and lost momentum in a guest race. Posted: 23rd May 2022.
JAMES CONNOR PB IN VITALITY LONDON 10K
James Connor’s fine form continued as he improved his best in the televised Vitality London 10K on Monday. The race made the headlines as Sir Mo Farah was outkicked by Aldershot’s Ellis Cross down Birdcage Walk and James Connor often made the TV coverage as he finished ahead of Eilish McColgan who just missed out on breaking Paula Radcliffe’s 2003 British record, but had the consolation of beating her mother Liz’s Scottish best. James crossed the finish line in 30 minutes 19 seconds, some four seconds ahead of Eilish, taking 13 seconds off his previous best set back in 2013. Also in action was Dan Meredith who improved his best to clock 35:32 to place 181st and 13th in the M45 category. Posted: 3rd May 2022.
CLUB AGM - NEW CHAIRMAN & PRESENTATION
Last Friday we held our first face to face AGM since 2019. Our new Chairman is Martin Chester, a club life member, committee member and young athletes team manager. One of his first tasks was to make a special presentation to another life member Martin McVeigh on 50 years’ club membership. Martin McVeigh joined Havering AC in October 1970 and competed for club track and field teams in distance events and at steeplechase, and also a regular on the cross country and road events for many years after that. He was an active club member and held several volunteer positions in the club including track & field fixtures secretary, and cross country captain and also involved in organising the Boxing Day Handicap and annual training camp at Winterton-on-Sea which he still attends. Posted: 22nd March 2022.
PASSING OF BILL WOODBERRY (1924-2022)
We are sad to report that our life member Bill Woodberry has passed away at the age of 97.
Bill hung up his coaching shoes at the end of the 2009 track season, just before his 85th birthday, after 40 years involvement with the club. The event was marked by a presentation to Bill of a garden bench on behalf of the club by our then Club President Mark Bishop.
Bill Woodberry first came to the Club as a parent with his son who was originally coached by Dave Naylor. He gradually began to get involved, to lend a hand and became a club member in 1968, & eventually took up coaching -that's over 40 years of volunteering at the Club. In addition to his coaching role, Bill was for many years, the Club's representative on the Havering Sports Council. Bill has all those attributes that makes for a good coach. It is impossible to count how many young athletes he looked after - always with a smile and an encouraging word. We will miss him very much and will always be grateful for the thousands of hours he has given to the Club. Members past & present will have fond memories of Bill, who was true gentleman of the old school. His funeral is at Corbets Tey on 6th April. Posted: 21st March 2022.
OFFICIALS DAY - A BIG SUCCESS
Despite miserable weather, it did not stop a group of budding officials and volunteers braving the elements to learn all about officiating and what it takes to run an athletics meeting. We were very lucky to have four very experienced officials, who have judged at the Commonwealth, European and Olympic Games, leading each of the different sessions. In the morning, everyone split into three groups with two groups having the opportunity to learn about judging the jumps and throws events and the third group exploring aspects of being a Clerk of Course and Technical Manager.
Posted: 21st March 2022. REPORT
THREE CLUB MEMBERS WIN AT HAVERING AWARDS
There were three awards for club members at the Havering Sports Council Awards presentations held at Upminster Golf Club last night.
Katie Ennis added to her England Athletics London Region Young Volunteer victory by picking up the Sports Volunteer of the Year Award for her volunteering both at athletics and ice hockey. Rebecca O'Rourke picked up the Disability Sports Competitor award, after previous runners up near misses, while national 300m hurdles champion Stephanie Okoro won the Junior Sports Competitor award. For good measure national vets steeplechase champion Jason Lendon was runner up in the Senior Sports category. Well done to all! Posted: 8th February 2022.
SILVER & CLUB U20 RECORD AT SEAA CHAMPS
There was a silver medal and a club record at the two-day South of England Under 20 and Senior Indoor Championships at Lee Valley this weekend. On Saturday Jacob Blanc further improved the club Under 20 Men’s 60m hurdles record he had set at the same venue two weeks earlier. His heat clocking of 8.06s trimmed six-hundredths of his previous mark but he was edged out of the medals in the final as his 8.11s clocking placed fourth in the final.
Olivia Boachie set a new career 400m best in the Under 20 Women’s event on Sunday, winning silver. She won her heat in style with a 57.46s PB, to improve her two-week old best, and placed second in the final with a 58.04s clocking.
Posted: 7th February 2022.
TWO CLUB U20 RECORDS FALL AT LONDON INDOORS
Two club records fell as club athletes took to the boards at the two-day London Indoor Games at Lee Valley at the weekend. Jacob Blanc made his debut at the Under 20 Men’s 60m sprint hurdles on Saturday by smashing the nine-year old club record with his 8.12s clocking. Jacob now holds the club hurdles records for Under 15 Men 60m & 80m hurdles, the Under 17 men’s 100m, 300m and 400m hurdles records, and the Under 20 men’s 60m hurdles mark.
On Sunday it was the turn of Ridwan Salaam to rewrite the record books. He had already shaded the previous U20M 60m sprint mark racing indoors at Newham on Wednesday with his 7.17s run, and went even faster at Lee Valley on Sunday stopping the clock at 7.14s. There were also swift 60m times from U20s Jacob Blanc & Denzil Achi (7.20s) and Ronnie Adoma (7.22s) suggesting that the new mark won’t survive the indoor season.
Olivia Boachie also impressed winning the U20 Women’s 400m on Saturday with a front-running PB of 58.23s, after winning her 200m heat in a legal best of 25.97s.
Posted: 24th January 2022.
TOM PITKIN IMPROVES CLUB 600m BEST AGAIN
Tom Pitkin started 2022 as he had finished 2021 by further improving the club 600m best he had set before Christmas
Competing for Butler University at Lexington, Kentucky, in the Jim Green Invitational on Friday 14th January, just two days after his 24th birthday, Tom trimmed one-tenth off his club best with a winning time of 1m 18.88s. He returned to the track on Saturday to place second in the 400m with 47.48s, his second fastest time.
Posted: 18th January 2022
SILVER FOR AIDAN & FINAL PLACES AT SEAA INDOORS
Aidan Doherty won silver in the Under 13 Boys' 800m at the South of England Indoor Championships at Lee Valley on Sunday. His time of 2m 33.94s took six seconds off his previous best. He also placed fourth in the 60m on Saturday with 8.57s. There were Under 17 60m hurdles fourth places for Paris King and Al-Ameen Salaam. Paris clocked a PB of 9.05s after heat and semi final times of 9.13s and 9.23s. Al-Ameen ran a promising 8.45s in his heat but hit hurdles in the final and finished outside the medals with 8.74s. Leila Jones was also fourth in the Under 15G 300m with 44.41s
Other heat results: U15G. 60m: Fisola Fagbadegun 8.34; Mya Thomas 8.50; Oma Nwapa 9.03; 200m: Leila Jones 27.51; Isobel Pickard 28.09; Amy Mansell 28.68; Fisola Fagbadegun 28.78; Fiyin Adebayo 29.64; 300m 60mH: Maggie Smith 10.39; U17W: 60m: Paris King 8.33; Precious Fagbadegun 8.36; Chizara Okocha 8.41; 200m: Miriam Adebayo 27.56s; Precious Fagbadegun 28.07; 800m: Miriam Adebayo 2: 4.11; 60mH Ruby Tillson 9.34s; U17M: 60m: Leon Bengo 7.59s; 800m: Sam Mahoney 2m 4.75s. Posted: 18th January 2022.