On 07 January 2018 In Athletics News

Cross Country success for the BRAT Men

A good day out for the BRAT men's Cross Country team yesterday at this year's County Championships. The joint race took place at Warley Woods with results being split between Warwickshire / Worcestershire and Seniors / Masters.

After supporting the BRAT juniors and women in earlier races, 24 BRAT men took to the start line in the final race of the day for a testing 4 lap grassland and woodland course. We were rewarded somewhat unexpectedly with bronze team medals in the Warwickshire senior category behind Coventry Godiva and Leamington (congratulations to Tom Powell, Steve Dunsby, Jon Lundy and Chris Burrows - medals are on the way to you via Richard Carney who collected them at the presentation). Well done also to Kevin Oakes, Rob Dowse, Barry Fallon, Frank Inman and James Wright for pushing those guys all the way round.

Not to be outdone the Masters team of Nick Lewis, Rene Vergo, Toby Close and Iain Squires also took bronze medals in that category behind Leamington and Rugby - again, Richard has your medals. Good work also by Andy Kenchington, Huw Jones, Adam Western, Andy Piddington, Nathan Smith, Paul Cannon, Martin Ludford and  Michael Gilbride who kept the pressure on throughout the race.

Simon Lanckham, Ashley Fawke and Damian Cartland also put in solid performances in the Worcsestershire Championships, though we didn't have enough runners finish a team in this category.

Thanks to everyone who turned out for this race, and to the many supporters who came along to cheer our runners.

Overall a very enjoyable and satisfying day for the Club (and for the happy team manager!).


Martin Ludford

On 19 November 2017 In Athletics News

OK - I know it's not even Christmas yet and we have only just started the Cross Country Season,

but the Senior Track and Field dates and Fixtures are now out.

So when you get your new diaries here are the dates to fill in


Sunday 6th May at Rugby (previously Sat 5th - thisis a date has changed)

Saturday 2nd June at Tipton (This will be joint hosted by Halesowen and BRAT So if you can't compete

please come and help.)

Saturday 7th July at Abingdon

Saturday 5th August at Stoke




On 05 September 2017 In Athletics News

David Lima shines with a fabulous fourth place in 200m semi-finals.

Three BRATs travelled to the Olympic stadium in London for the World
Athletic Championships from August 4th to 11th.  Having qualified for the
100m in 10.05s and 200m in 20.30s, David was set to take his place in both
events, whilst Alison Jordan was a track judge and Gordon Ainsley and
athlete steward.

David's quest began on the first day, Friday, in the 100m. His qualifying
time exempted him from the preliminary round and he took to the stage in the
first round proper later in the evening.  Alas it was not to be because
nervous tension got the better of him and as a result of a poor start he
finished 7th in his worst time of the season of 10.41s. Speaking to him
afterwards he was very annoyed with himself but realised he tensed up
driving out of the starting blocks.

However now having had the experience of competing at world level he was
better prepared for the 200m heats on Monday. And so it was, because in his
heat he ran his second fastest time ever of 20.54s to finish 5th and qualify
for the semi finals in 22nd place of 24. David's confidence was now
increasing such that he was looking forward to the next round on Wednesday.

Before the semi final of the 200m there was much discussion on whether the
Botswana athlete Isaac Matwala should be allowed to take part having missed
the heats on Monday due to contracting novovirus at the team hotel and was
placed in quarantine for 48hours. This meant he also missed the 400m final
as well and under IAAF rules would not normally be allowed to take any
further part. However on Wednesday morning after much discussion the
decision was reversed and Matwala had to run 200m on his own before the
start of Wednesday's proceedings and try to beat a predetermined qualifying
time. This he duly did. Then more controversy when he was placed in semi
final 1, David's race, rather than semi final 3 as written in the rules.

Anyway 9 athletes lined up for the first semi final, in what can only be
described as an absolutely appalling conditions, with torrential rain, which
hadn't stopped all day. David was left a little in the first 50m and was
last coming into the home straight, but he ran a magnificent second half to
finish 4th in 20.56s, a remendous effort in such awful conditions. This
placed him 13th of the 25 semifinalists.

Gordon had the honour of leading out the athletes carrying the event banner
to the start of both the heats and semi-final. Speaking to David afterwards he was very pleased with his performance and
was content that he had done himself justice. I am sure all in the BRAT club
would like to extend their congratulations to him, the first BRAT ever to
compete in a World Athletics Championships.


by Gordon Ainsley

On 28 August 2017 In Athletics News

Over the weekend, Alex Clegg competed in the U20 Decathlon Champs at the Yorkshire Combined Events Championship. This is a report on how the 10 events went by Nigel Clegg.

The Yorkshire Combined Events championships takes place over two days at the Dorthy Hyman track in Cudworth, Barnsley.

There are combined events for all age ranges from under 13 up to seniors. Alex Clegg was competing in only his second ever decathlon and was aiming for a total of 6000 points (to beat his previous best of 5905).

Day one started well enough with a new pb of 11.86 in the 100 metres and another pb in the long jump - unlike ‘normal’ competitions where you get six attempts, in the decathlon you only get three, so having fouled on his first jump the pressure was on in the second round but thankfully he managed to steady his nerves and hit the board in the right spot for a leap of 6.10m - which was the furthest of all the under 20 group.

Shot put came next and Alex was just 4cm down on his pb with a throw of 11.35m, again in the second round.

By the middle of the afternoon the high jump competition began. It can take quite a while as athletes can choose to come in at whatever height they want to, so with a start height of 1.60m meant that Alex had to try and keep stretched and ready for nearly 45 minutes before he got to jump. Clearing 1.69m gave him victory in the discipline but he was down on his pb of 1.75m which meant that he wasn’t able to stretch his lead over the Edinburgh athlete, Cal McClennan.

The final event of day one, the 400m saw Alex come home in third place in a time of 53.91, whist McClellan won in just over 51 seconds to him a 60 point lead going into day two.

The trick to the decathlon is trying to rest up and get your body ready to go again the following morning and with the first event of day two being the sprint hurdles then any stiffness in the legs is soon found out. 

Alex ran well out of the blocks but just clipped hurdle number three which lost him some momentum and he eventually came home in fourth spot nearly 1.5 seconds behind McClellan who further extended his lead. Event seven was the discus - Alex’s second round throw drew applause from fellow competitors who recognised that it had gone some distance..however, the field official seemed to run to the wrong spot as the measurement was called at 32.57 even though throws by other competitors, which had landed in similar positions the field, were called at 35/36m. Unfortunately it wasn’t picked up at the time so points were lost.

Pole vault came next and after a nervy third attempt at 3.10m, Alex got first time clearances at 3.20, 3.30 and 3.40m leaving him with an attempt at a new pb of 3.50m. His second vault was the closest but it wasn’t to be and McClellan stretched his lead once more.

The javelin is probably Alex’s favourite individual event and his throw of 44.15m saw him claw back some points on McClellan and also gave him a valuable lead over Nathan Langley in third spot.

And then finally, after all that, you are asked to stand at the top corner of the track at the 1500m start line and run the race as fast as you can to gain those vital final points! It’s the one event which decathletes hate the most. Two days of competition, with your arms, legs and torso being twisted and turned in all directions and then you have to go out and put yourself through 1500m.

Thankfully Alex likes the race and after letting McClellan lead through the first 400m in 67 seconds, he then took over and stretched the field to win by almost the length of the home straight in a very respectable 4min 29 seconds.

This wasn’t enough to take overall victory which went to Cal but a points total of 5851 was a decent effort and leaves Alex ranked 10th in the UK this year.

Pictured are the top four competitors on the rostrum all looking very relieved that it’s all over.
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