ATHLETICS - Stratford youngsters represent Warwickshire at national Sportshall Final - The Stratford Observer

ATHLETICS - Stratford youngsters represent Warwickshire at national Sportshall Final

Stratford Editorial 13th Apr, 2023 Updated: 13th Apr, 2023   0

STRATFORD-upon-Avon Athletic Club’s young athletes came away with a glut of medals at the Sportshall Athletics National Final held at Fenton Manor in Stoke-on-Trent.

The club’s athletes, along with Rugby and Northampton AC, helped Warwickshire’s under-13 and under-15 boys qualify for the UK final having won the West Midlands regional event.

And Stratford accounted for more than half of Warwickshire’s 10-strong under-13 boys squad as Will Hovell, Aran Cooper, Elfric McKenzie, Arthur Mansbridge, Joel Ledgard and Sam Plumb were joined by four athletes from Rugby and Northampton AC.

And the squad dominated the track events to win medals in all of the relay races which began with silver in the obstacle relay for McKenzie, Ledgard and Plumb.

And Ledgard then produced a sensational performance in the 15cm high speed bounce to win gold with 85 bounces in just 30 seconds.

Warwickshire qualified for all of the relay finals as Stratford’s youngsters starred on the track with Mansbridge and Plump part of the silver-medal winning 4×1 lap relay team.

And Hovell and Cooper then won bronze in the gruelling eight-lap paarlauf (a two-runner relay where one rests whilst the other runs).

There was further success for McKenzie and Ledgard in the six-lap relay as they tied for silver with Avon.

The highlight of the competition came in the 4×2 relay as some slick baton changes and superb technique on the reversaboards by Mansbridge and three Rugby athletes helped Warwickshire claim gold.

Having fought for every point possible, Warwickshire finished second overall behind winners Surrey.

And Stratford also had three athletes in Warwickshire’s under-15 boys squad as Seb Hillard, Sam McKenzie and Keenan Stratford were part of the seven-strong team.

The squad endured mixed fortunes in their individual events but held their own to finish sixth overall after a strong performance in the 4×2 lap relay.

Despite only finishing third in their heat, the Warwickshire team qualified for the final as one of the six fastest teams.

And with Keenan on the third leg and Sam on the fourth leg, Warwickshire reeled in the teams around them to claim silver after they were pipped to gold by a strong Surrey squad.


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