(Re)Generation Game as Track Season Finale Looms!
After a week largely dominated by road race consideration, it was back to the track en masse for Harborough AC over the past seven days, with Open Meetings and the concluding Senior Track & Field League Match meting out the path to the final throes of the season. First up, it was to the revamped surroundings of the Rockingham Road Triangle track in Corby. With the refurbished complex playing host to a rejuvenated Corby Town FC, it was fitting that the neighbouring track should pay witness to a number of strong performances, which served to prove that the profile of Harborough AC is, itself, undergoing a regeneration of its very own! The 100m and 200m sprint races saw the young Benstead siblings of Alice and Jack both registering notable runs – Jack running to within 0.1s of his 100m PB, as well as Roy Barber and Chris Holliday cutting their respective cloth equally as impressively in windy conditions; yet it was over the One Mile distance where youth and experience blended most evidently. While the exploits of Sean Fenwick have been in evidence since his ascension to the Vet40 ranks, Martha Clapp – at the other end of the competitive age spectrum – has suffered somewhat with injury throughout the campaign. Their divergent seasons, however, came to parallels over the four-and-a-bit lap race, as both recorded new age group Club Records. A time of 4:47.1 cut over 15 seconds off the previous Vet40 mark – held by Men’s Club Captain Will Clapp – and marked a PB for the impressive Fenwick; but the Clapp family name was swiftly restored to the Records board as Martha levelled a clocking of 6:14.1 to claim the Under15 mark.
Just a day later, and Roy Barber was on track again, taking to the Loughborough University track over the shorter sprint. Producing a powerful start, Barber clocked 11.81s, with only himself having run quicker than that this year amongst the Club ranks. From there it was on to final Senior League meeting of the year, at the distant Stourport Track in Kidderminster. Despite the extended trek to the venue, there was a good turnout for the yellow and black ranks. A much-welcomed return to action for Darren Tucker – after two injury-plagued years – was augmented by a number of excellent performances on the day. In blustery conditions which circled the open arena, there were victories for Tucker in the Javelin; Dan Worley in the Steeplechase; Roy Barber in the 200m; and Emily Taylor in the 400m Hurdles. The latter of these was, undoubtedly, the stand-out run of the day, as Taylor sought to produce a new Club Record time of 74.2s. That run eclipsed the previous time of 75.0s, thus erasing a mark that had stood for some 26 years!
Having endured a testing year in a higher league than previous, Club Chairman Martin Hughes was very positive in reflection on the season: “What competing at this level does is encourage people to really step up and strive to run to the best. And, without doubt, every single Club member who has pulled on the kit this year has done exactly that, and acquitted themselves superbly. The fact that so many Club Records have been set at just four League meetings proves exactly that, and the fact that they’ve been set by some of our youngest runners is great news for the Club as a whole!”
As the track season draws to an end, attention now turns to the Club’s Annual Awards Evening. All club members are welcome, with details and tickets for the event now available. Anyone interested in what is a fantastic night of entertainment and celebration should contact Graham Hillier for more information.