|Saturday 9th June saw Round 3 of the Southern Athletics League come to Lewes. Competitors from Chichester, Kingston & Polytechnic Harriers, and Cambridge Harriers (based in South London) descended on the Lewes track for a very windy afternoon of track and field events.
Lewes athletes (twinned with Haywards Heath Harriers for this league) were out in force, and fought hard against the impressive Cambridge Harriers.
In the men’s 100m Aaron Guildford produced a great time of 12.1secs against a dreadful headwind. He also clocked a 23.5sec time in the 200m, putting him 2nd in both races. Ludo Goodliffe ran an impressive 800m in 2mins 6secs, coming in 2nd, with less than 3 seconds separating the first three finishers. Patrick McManus ran the 800m in the B-string race and came in first with 2mins 14secs. Daniel Sullivan also ran well in both the 400m and the 400m hurdles, gaining valuable points for the club.
There was a great battle in the 1500m race, with Josh Burgess being narrowly pipped into 2nd place by Cambridge Harriers, with a time of 4mins 18secs. Tim Calliafas ran in the B-string 1500m and ran an impressive time of 4mins 38secs. The 5000m event saw perhaps the fastest collection of times so far in Lewes’s campaign in the league. Robbie James’s superb time of 17mins 3secs could only give him 3rd place, as Cambridge Harriers’ Dean Lacy stormed home in a remarkable time of 15mins 29secs.
The women’s track events were also dominated by Cambridge Harriers. However, Lewes fought hard and produced some great results. Ella James and Faith Daughtery fought against the headwind in the 100m, producing times of 14.6secs and 15.3secs respectively. Natalie Pettifer and Lucie Venables both scored good points in the 400m, and Emma Robertson gained 2nd place in the 800m with a time of 2mins 32secs. Emma also ran in the 1500m, and she and Lizzie Keep both came 2nd in their separate races with impressive times of 5mins 31secs and 5mins 49 respectively. Karin Divall fought hard in her 3000m race, and came 2nd in 13mins 19secs.
Lewes also had some great performances in the field events. Sam Brown won the men’s pole vault at a height of 4.25m, with James Shackleton coming 2nd in the B-string event with 3.5m. The triple jump saw Evan Carter come 3rd with a jump of 11.39m, and Daniel Sullivan come 2nd in the B-string event with 10.91m. Chris Darling also managed a 2nd place in the hammer with a mighty throw of 39.38m.
The Lewes women fared better than the men in the field events, and there were wins in both the triple jump events for Ellie Radcliffe (11.09m) and Lucie Venables (9.42m). Lucie also came 2nd in the B-string long jump. Ella James totally outclassed her opponents to win the high jump with a height of 1.55m, and Hannah Jackson came second in the B-string with 1.30m. Hannah McDonald gained 2nd place in the pole vault with 2.6m, and Naomi Lee threw an almighty 33.52m to put her 2nd in the hammer event.
Despite many good results, the Lewes & Haywards Heath team couldn’t quite keep up with the impressive teams fielded by both Cambridge and Kingston. However, they finished a comfortable 3rd ahead of Chichester, and still maintain their mid-table placing overall, with two more events to go.