Invicta’s strong return to County Championships
Athletes from Canterbury’s Invicta East Kent marked their return to competitive athletics with medals galore across the board at the Kent County Championships in Ashford on 8th and 9th May. Kent was the only county to hold the championships on the usual May date this year and the competition did not disappoint.
The windy conditions on Saturday certainly made it difficult, particularly for Lauren Macey who battled the wind and rain to claim gold in the 400m hurdles to start Invicta’s weekend on a high.
Notable performances from the weekend included U15 Amelia Lawton’s 4 medals with bronze medals in the hammer, shot putt, discus and silver in the javelin (both discus and javelin were personal bests for Amelia) and Charlotte Henrich who dominated the field in the U17 300m, taking home the gold in a time of 40.99; a time which puts her 2nd in the UK. Charlotte also won silver in the 200m in an agonisingly close race that saw her 0.01s off the first place. The men were represented by Jamie Keir who got two glorious golds in the U17 1500m and 800m.
Also taking away two medals was Qi-Chi Ukpai with a gold in the high jump and a personal best of 1.58 and silver in the long jump with another personal best.
The golds rolled in for Korede Awe in the Senior Men’s 100m (11.17), Issy Harding in the U20 javelin with a huge personal best of 31.25m and Amy-Jayne Goodhand in the U17 1500m (4:46) following a close 4th place for Amy in the 800m the previous day. Following behind Amy in the 1500m was Teigan Sullivan in 7th and Millie Knightley in 10th.
Invicta were well represented across the 1500m with Cole Gibbens finishing 4th in the senior men’s race in a time of 4:11.52; a new personal best by 7 seconds! In the U20 men’s 1500m, Oliver Weston finished in 6th in 4:25.75 with Matthew Bawtree in 9th with 4:50. Both with new personal bests. Matthew also took on the 800m the following day finishing in 6th place and an excellent start to his competing career. Jake Stevens also represented in the U17 men’s race, finishing in 7th with a new personal best of 4:27.28, while Oliver Scott represented the U15 boy’s race finishing in 4th in 4:43. Rebekah Goodhand finished 7th in the U20 women’s 1500m in 5:29; a personal best time.
Over in the 800m and Adam Whitlock finished 5th in the u15 800m in 2:23
Matthew Bawtree was 7th in the u20 800 in 2:17.
We had some more superb silvers from Morgan Wallwork in the U20 men’s long jump (Morgan also finished 5th in the 100m in 13.47) Doug Noel in the senior men’s long jump (finishing just ahead of his coach Jacob Burton – as he did in the 400m!) Morgan and Doug’ training partner Reef Page (U17) got silver in the shot putt with a new personal best in 12.33m. Reef also took on the 400m finishing in 4th in 56.47, he threw a personal best in the discus and finishing 5th in the long jump.
We had some brilliant bronze from Rebecca Weston in the senior women’s 800m in her first race since 2013, while Quinn Bury bagged bronze in the U20 men’s high jump with a personal best of 1.70m. Training partners Darcie Maple and Scarlet Thomas-Wright raced one after the other in the 100ms with Darcie running as U15 and Scarlet U17. Both girls did not disappoint, both storming to third place with Darcie running a personal best of 13.25 and Scarlet a personal best of 13.08. Maya Ambroisine also had an excellent race in her first ever County Championships, coming in at U20 age group.
Darcie also raced against training partner Jenna Humphreys in the 200m. Darcie finished 3rd to qualify for the final while Jenna finished 7th in her first ever County Championships.
Darcie later finished 4th in the final in a time of 28.88.
Among the men, Jake Goodman qualified for the U20 men’s 200m, finishing 4th in the final in 23.23 against some tough competition, while Josh Thomas-Wright also qualified for the final in the U15 age group, taking 5th spot in an incredible close race and a huge personal best of 25.34.
In the longer sprint, Chloe Sumner finished in a strong 4th place in the U20 400m in 59.64 while Jildou Chappell finished 8th in the same race I 1:08.26. For both girls this was their first 400m race; it’s not an easy race so huge well done to both of them!
Jildou also threw a personal best in the javelin with a throw of 25.73 while her training partner Issy Harding also finished 5th in her first 100m hurdles race, 4th place in the long jump and 6th in the shot putt with a personal best throw.
Huge well done to everyone who competed. Athletes have worked really hard to keep up some level of training over the last twelve months and it is fantastic to see it pay off! Thank you to the officials and volunteers for putting on a safe and successful event.