Throwers star for Pendle Athletic Club

Pendle Athletic Club presentation evening at Nelson Cricket Club
Pendle Athletic Club presentation evening at Nelson Cricket Club
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Pendle Athletic Club recently held their annual presentation evening at Nelson Cricket Club, to celebrate the achievement of all the club athletes who competed throughout the year.

The club had fewer numbers than previously, which affected performance in the leagues, but a special mention has to be given to the throwers, who were excellent throughout the year, with seven of them, in different age groups, gaining rankings of seventh to 25th in the UK.

There were trophies awarded on the night to Amy Smith (U11 Female), Austen Coates (U11 Male), Keiran Bowden (U13 Male Sprint, U13 Male Field), Anita Saunders (Female Sprint), Leeroy Golding (Male Sprint), James Blackburn (Male Hurdles), Peter Baistow (Male Middle Distance), Gabija Safranaviciute (Female Field Jumps), James Blackburn (Male Field Jumps), Zoe Kidney (Female Field Throws), Alan Plumb (Male Field Throws), Ella Atkins (Female Endeavour), Harvey Van Geffen (Male Endeavour), Alex Baker (Mid Lancs League Trophy Female), Alan Plumb (Mid Lancs League Trophy Male), Lynn Baker (Athletes’ Athlete Trophy), Zoe Kidney (Young Athlete of the Year).

Special certificates and badges this year went to the Young Athletes group for running a massive 2,000m in training – well done to Isla Holgate, Lara Haycocks, Theo Haycocks, Daanish Mahmood, Maheen Mahmood, Noah Earing, Finlay Hall, Jackson Allen, Erin Murphy, Tobias Alderson, Harry Roberts, Amy Smith, Marnie Nelson, Florence Duerden, Jack Duerden, William Crossley, Libby Handforth, Jack Bleasdale, Holly Bleasdale and Finley Lemon.

Several of these youngsters also took part in their first cross countries at Towneley Park, Leigh and Cuerden Valley Park, along with Thomas Finnan, Jessica Coulson and Austen Coates.

Leah Hilllman again got special congratulations for receiving the Sheila Markendale Sportsmanship Award.

The trophy was presented by the Lancashire Schools’ Athletic Association to mark her achievements with Lancashire Schools’ Athletics – the award recognizes Leah as being an ambassador for athletics, a role model to young athletes, and for her impeccable behaviour and enthusiasm throughout her five years competing at the English Schools’ Championships for Lancashire.

At the Lancashire Schools’ Championships this year, the club’s medallists were Zoe Kidney and Alex Baker, both girls taking County Championship titles. They were both selected to represent Lancashire Schools at the English Schools’ Championships.

The Lancashire Track and Field Championships resulted in Alan Plumb, Andy Higginbottom, Anita Saunders, Zoe Kidney and Alex Baker collecting 11 medals between them.

Andy (Hammer), Zoe (Javelin) and Alex (Javelin, Discus and Shot) claimed county championship titles for their throwing.

A growing number of the club’s older athletes are now competing with considerable success in Masters Competition.

Anita Saunders took bronze at 100m and 200m at the Lancashire Championships, at the Northern Masters Championships, gold at 100m and 200m and bronze at 400m, and at the British Masters Championships she took silver at 200m and bronze at 100m.

She is ranked fifth at 60m indoors and third at 100m, sixth at 200m and 12th at 400m in her UK age group.

Also at the Northern Masters Championships, Leeroy Golding took gold at 200m and silver at 400m.

He represented Northern Masters at the Inter-Area Challenge in his age group, and is 19th at 200m and 22nd at 400m in the UK.

Leeroy also enjoys travelling, and in 2018 he competed at the European Indoor Masters in Madrid, the World Masters in Malaga, the European Masters Outdoor Championships in the Czech Republic, and has just returned from the World Indoor Masters Athletic Championships in Poland.

The Athletes’ Athlete trophy was awarded to Lynn Baker, often competing alongside her daughter.

She was ranked seventh at Discus, 12th at Hammer, 13th at Javelin and 25th at Shot in her age group in the UK.

The club’s Young Athlete of the Year was Zoe Kidney, who had an excellent season, gaining significant Personal Best performances and finishing 10th in the UK in the Under 20 age group at Javelin.