Blackheath & Bromley Harriers narrowly miss out on European crown
PUBLISHED: 06:00 25 September 2013
Blackheath & Bromley's under 20 women's team came within six points of being crowned European Champions, when they finished in third place in the European Champions Club Cup in the Czech Republic last week.
It was an outstanding effort which saw them break a UK record, set three meeting records, win seven events, and provide the track athlete of the match.
Some set or equalled personal bests, others came close to their bests, and all battled hard to get the most points possible for the team. It was so close that it was the 4x400m at the end of the meeting that confirmed the final placings.
The UK record came in the 4x100m where the quartet of Vivien Olatunji, Shannon Hylton, Cheriece Hylton and Dina Asher Smith timed 46.28s to run the fastest ever time by a UK Junior Womens Club team, breaking the club’s own record set last year. All four are coached by John Blackie.
Three of these athletes also won individual events. Dina was first in the 200m in a wind assisted 23.38s - an effort which was adjudged the best track performance of the day.
Shannon set a meeting record when she won the 100m in 11.71s and Cheriece took the 400m title in 55.97s. Cheriece and Dina then joined Rachel Dickens and Leah Everson as the club won the 4x400m in 3.52.97s.
Samantha Brown finished her career in the junior age group by winning the 400m hurdles in 64.09s, as did Jahisha Thomas in the long jump with a leap of 5.92m.
Jahisha was also second in the 100m hurdles in a personal best of 14.14s, and it was silver too for Kerri Davison in the triple jump with a distance of 12.04m.
The aforementioned Leah Everson won bronze in the 800m, just outside her best with 2.15.04s, and Amber Reed was also third in the 3000m steeplechase in a personal best of 12.46.41s.
Yemisi Sofolarin also performed better than ever before in the hammer and she was not far off her best in finishing fifth in the javelin.
Remarkably only three of the team are too old for this age group next year, but unfortunately the club have not qualified to represent the UK in next year’s final, bringing to an end eight year consecutive year of representing the nation.
They gave a fitting team performance on which to bow out and they will look to become national champions next year and return to the competition in 2015.