Sun shines on Lewes AC’s awards afternoon

LEWES Athletics Club held its annual competition for club members at the Lewes Track on Sunday, and this was combined with the presentation of annual awards and a very successful barbecue and social event.

There was the added bonus of a new British Record achieved by a club member taking part in the competition. Hamilton Thomas (pictured) broke the previous British record for men over 75 for throwing the heavy hammer with his first attempt of 14.40 metres. When you bear in mind that the heavy hammer is 7.26kg, this is quite an achievement.

There was also great news for the club and for Lewes when Rob Mullett, currently in the USA, texted to say that he had achieved the B qualifying standard for the Olympic 3,000m steeplechase with a run of 8mins 31.62secs. Rob is one of only three in the UK that have achieved this Olympic qualifying mark.

During 2011 and moving in 2012, Lewes AC has had a very successful record in track and field events and leagues, in cross country and in road and fun running. Many athletes from the club are ranked highly at county and national level and compete at the highest level. The club awards not only recognises these excellent achievements but also seeks to recognise those club members of all ages that have improved over the year. In addition, the awards are a means of thanking and recognising those that have made significant contributions to the success of the club over many years. The following list records the award winners for 2011:

U11 Male Athlete of the Year: Ben Walters; U13 Male Athlete of the Year: Aiden Briffett; U15 male Athlete of the Year: Luke Staples; U17 Male Athlete of the Year: Aaron Guilford; U11 Female Athlete of the Year: Danielle Jacobs: U13 Female Athlete of the Year: Polly Saunders; U15 Female Athlete of the Year: Millie Cable; U17 Female Athlete of the Year: Naomi Lee; U13 Male Athlete for Improvement: Samson Page; U13 Female Athlete for Improvement: Hannah Lewis; U17 Female Athlete for Improvement: Ella James; U13 Award for Achievement: Scott Staples; U17 Award for Achievement: Emilie Blackwell; U20 Award for Achievement: Sam Bennett; Senior Male Award for Achievement: David Bradford; Senior Female Award for Achievement: Maria Judd; Senior Male Athlete for Improvement: Matt Homewood; Senior Female Athlete for Improvement: Carolyn Bennett; Award for Contribution to the Club: Andrew Chitty; Award for Contribution to the Club: Karin Divall; John Saunders Cup for Achievement: Robbie James; Albert Banks Award for special contributions to the Club: David Foster and Sally Brown.

In addition to catering for all ages and abilities the club seeks to provide the fun in fun running. The club also tries to ensure that all club members enjoy their experiences as evidenced by the U11 and U13 young athletes preparing to take part in their events.

Following the fun running theme, there were 18 club members taking part on Wednesday evening in the West Sussex Fun Run League event along the beach at Littlehampton. Again Pablo Ibargren was first Lewes runner finishing in tenth position out of the 300 runners in a time of 30mins 45secs. Chris Hunt also made the top 15, finishing in 15th position in a time of 31.46secs. First Lewes Lady was Katherine Emery, finishing in a time of 38mins 05secs, followed by Carole Waters in a time of 39mins 13secs. Other Lewes AC runners were: Colin Bennett, Mat Haycock, Andrew Chitty, Neil Baker, Mat Homewood, Tim Monson, David Foster, Mick Acott, Clare Anstee, Charlotte Chapman, Zoe Breeds, Pauline Smart, Anita Amies and Vicky Lawrence. Overall the Lewes team gained 75 points to securing the team into fourth position.