KCAA Relay Championships – September 18, 2016

A fantastic afternoon of athletics at Gillingham as no fewer than four new club records were set by the U13 and U15 boys yesterday in a fitting end of season finale!

On the day the club won 11 gold, four silver and six bronze medals which was a reflection on the high standard that many of the athletes have been setting all season.

The U13 boys were outstanding on the day.  In the 4 x 100 a team of Connor Sutton, Sam Reardon, Jacob Byfield and Robert Murray won convincingly from Medway & Maidstone with a team of Oliver Robertson, Nick Paddington, Tom Brash and Matthew Smith finishing seventh.

Three teams contested the 3 x 800m with a team of Tom Brash, Sam and Alex Sibley leading from gun to tape to record a new club record of 7:20.7, three seconds off the previous one.  An outstanding achievement and 18 seconds ahead of second placed Medway.  The team of Oliver Robertson, Brandon Back and Adam Parkinson ran well to claim the bronze medal ahead of Barnaby Corry, Matthew Smith and Eddie Sellar to highlight the strength in depth of the group.

The final event for the U13 boys was the 4 x 300, an event which was new to the championships.  The team of Robert Murray, Connor Sutton, Jacob Byfield and Sam Reardon ran an amazing time of 3:06.2 (which would have qualified them for the U15B final) to set a new club record.

Not to be outdone, the U15 boys had a great day on the track.  The 4 x 100 was a straight final and a team of Myles Xavier, Tom Mills, Caelan Raju and Rico Cottell ran a blistering time of 45.4 seconds  (the 7th quickest in the UK this year) for a well-deserved gold medal.  They were just ahead of Nana Okwesa, Kyron Morgan, Henry Whichello and Ollie Briars (three of next years’ team) who ran 47.9 for silver.  Unfortunately the team of LJ Wright, Ben Gardiner, Leo McCallum and Jonathan Abbott had a “dodgy” handover and were disqualified.

The next event on the track was the 3 x 800 where we had two teams.  All of the boys competing were fired up to have a go at the club record set last year.  The team of Keir Lundy, Robert Suckling and Peter Guy ran “eyeballs out” to see how close they could get to the existing record of 6:24,53.  Three of had them timed at or around this time and waited anxiously to see the official time to find they had equalled the club record.  An outstanding performance.

The team of Cameron Swatton, Joseph Georgiadis and Ben Gardiner ran well for bronze medals.

The final event of the day was (my favourite) the 4 x 300.  Two teams qualified in the heats for the event and we had parents and athletes eagerly anticipating what would be a great race between two extremely strong BBHAC teams.  At the gun Peter Guy set off in what can only be described as a determined manner running an amazing 38.0 seconds before handing over to Joshua Gbagbo.  Back from a broken leg which destroyed his season, Josh produced a great run in just over 39.0 handing over to Robert Suckling who has been in great form all summer.  Sensing the record was there to be taken, Robert chased round in the quickest split of 37.9 before passing the baton to Tom Mills to bring the team home.  Tom pounded round the final lap and stopped the clock at an incredible 2:33.5, almost 4 seconds off the previous record.

Before we could pause for breath the second BBHAC team swept passed the team from Judd School (basically the Tonbridge AC team) to win a well-deserved silver medal with great runs from Myles Xavier, Kyron Morgan (running sub 40), Caelan Raju and Henry Whichello.

Much praise has to be given to all of the athletes who competed on the day who, through a combination of talent, tenacity and determination produced a fantastic return of performances.

Well done to all who competed – it really was a great day!