It’s great to see live track and field athletics again in the UK and Blackheath & Bromley hosted its first Open Meeting of the season at Bromley’s Norman Park following strict government guidelines. Everybody welcomed back real competition as virtual athletics although valuable does not beat the real thing.

With over 200 competitors in action from many clubs across the south east, there was a lot of fine action taking place, and with 55 athletes from BBHAC participating the club had a lot of interest.

Club athletes combined to deliver 26 personal bests and 24 season bests in both track and field events. The pick of the performances was from Lauren Farley who threw the javelin out to a new pb of 47.41m and currently tops the UK women’s rankings. On the track Drew Burridge clocked an impressive 36.28 over the rarely run 300m, and Alex O’Callaghan Brown ran 84.50 over 600m. Martin Richardon ran 9.31.59 over 3,000m while among the ladies Lily Meers clocked a good 2.20.83 over 800m. In the field Barnaby Corry opened his outside season in the pole vault with 3.60m and Oscar Whitcombe reached 3.20m for a new personal best.

There was little action on the US collegiate circuit this past weekend for club athletes, but Katy Ann McDonald clocked 4.25.95 over 1500m at a meeting in Tuscaloosa, Alabama, while Lewis Mills ran a great new pb in the 3,000m steeplechase with 9.15.76, also reported he clocked 4.00.68 over 1500m for a new pb as well, at a meeting in Oxford, Mississippi.

Away from the track we have also learned that former BBHAC club member Emily Muskett (nee Godley) has become the first British weightlifter to claim European gold for 26 years by winning the women’s 71kg division in Moscow. The 2019 World bronze medallist lifted 98kg in the snatch stage, before achieving 129kg in the clean-and-jerk stage to total 227kg.

 

Emily Muskett

 

Myrtle Augee (also a former BBHAC club member) was the last British weightlifter to win a European title when she took +83kg gold in 1995, Although the women’s 71kg division is not part of the Olympic programme, Muskett’s success boosts her chances of attaining a place at the postponed Tokyo 2020 Olympics. Results from this category and those in the 81kg class will be used to determine the line-up for the 76kg Olympic division.

Muskett, who in addition to claiming the overall victory also claimed European snatch silver as well as clean and jerk gold.

Nick Brooks