Talented Herts Phoenix youngsters put best foot forward at national championships

PUBLISHED: 17:42 27 February 2020

Ena Olivier and Jacob Vickers of Herts Phoenix at the National Championships in Sheffield. Picture: PHILIP OLIVIER

Ena Olivier and Jacob Vickers of Herts Phoenix at the National Championships in Sheffield. Picture: PHILIP OLIVIER

Archant

National championships dominated the programme for Herts Phoenix with competitors at three different events.

Ellie Bandy of Herts Phoenix competed in her first British Indoor Athletics Championships in Glasgow. Picture: NATE ROGERSEllie Bandy of Herts Phoenix competed in her first British Indoor Athletics Championships in Glasgow. Picture: NATE ROGERS

Ellie Bandy competed in her first British Indoor Athletics Championship in Glasgow, running over 60m and 200m, and she was delighted with both her runs and the experience gained.

She said: "I came fourth in my heat for the 60m and was third in my 200m heat and missing the final by just 0.2 seconds.

"If you had asked me at the start of the year where I thought I would end up at the end of the indoors season, I would never have thought I would be close to qualifying for the British champs final.

"This has put me in an excellent position for the outdoor season so I am really looking forward to it."

Herts Phoenix had a number of athletes at the National Championships in Sheffield. Picture: PHIL RIZZOHerts Phoenix had a number of athletes at the National Championships in Sheffield. Picture: PHIL RIZZO

Down in Sheffield, the indoor age-group championship saw six Phoenix athletes take part.

Amelia Gittens and Tiana Rizzo were up first in the 60m heats and both qualified for the semi-final, Rizzo setting a PB of 8.10 seconds.

She went even quicker there, reducing her PB to 8.02, and while this wasn't enough to reach the final, it continues her impressive form in her first year as an U15.

Gittens did make the final where she came seventh in 7.97s.

Serena Thomas clocked 8.12 in the U17 girls' race, missing out of a place in the semi-final by two-hundredths of a second, while U15 Josh Heesom set a new PB of 7.63 in qualifying for the semis.

He just missed out on the final, finishing fourth, while his 200m hopes were shattered by a disqualification for stepping outside line on the final bend.

The club were also represented in the field events with Ena Olivier and Jacob Vickers going in their respective U15 high jump competitions.

Oliver placed fourth in the girls', clearing the bar at her existing PB of 1.55 metres.

Vickers meanwhile was fifth after jumping 1.61 metres.

Foregoing the warmth of the indoor arenas though was a quartet from the club who took on the National Cross-Country Championship in Nottingham.

The course became very muddy very quickly to the point that the bog claimed one victim - Bethany Botheras's shoe.

The U13 was going strongly at the time, around 100th position, and although she dropped back through the field she still completed the 3km course in 268th.

Lottie Rowedder was 44th in the U20 women's race while Adam Hughes came 101st in the U20 men's.

The outstanding result of the day though went to Lizzy Janes in the senior women as she came 11th from a field of 911 finishers.

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