Dwayne Cowan helps Hercules Wimbledon AC set new club relay record

BY TOM POLLAK
Hercules Wimbledon Athletic Club ended their summer track and field season with the men winning the Rosenheim League final at Tooting Bec.

The women went tantalisingly close to making it a double triumph as they missed out by just one-and-a-half points, while the club’s older athletes gained a quartet of gold medals in the British Masters Championships in Birmingham.

The men’s winning Rosenheim team performance was crowned with a club record-breaking victory in the final event of the two-and-a-half hour programme, the 4×200 metres relay.

European 4x400m relay silver medallist Dwayne Cowan anchored the team home to cross the line almost half-a-length of the home straight ahead of runners-up Belgrave in one minute 28.45 seconds to break the long-standing club record of 1:29.0 set at the 1993 Surrey Championships by Dave Orchard, who is still competing as a veteran, Martin Giraud,  Simon Roll and Martin Gaston.

The other members of the record-breaking team were Jaleel Roper, fellow teenager Chad Miller, who represented Britain in the IAAF World Junior Championships in Finland in July, and Antonio Douglas, who completed a hat-trick of wins on the night.

Douglas won the high jump with 1.76 metres, just below his lifetime best of 1.78 and in between jumping managed to sweep to victory in the 100n in 11.36, just two-hundredths of a second below his season’s best.

After a close battle throughout the evening with rivals Belgrave, Ben Toomer set Hercules Wimbledon on the winning road by taking the penultimate track event, the 3,000m in a PB of 8:35.67 improving on his 8:36.27 in last season’s Rosenheim final at Kingston.

Other Hercules Wimbledon winners were Belal Ahmed (1500m) and Morgan Sullivan (triple jump) while Nicholas Thomas was runner-up in the 800m and Sam Hitchings was third in the shot.

Men’s match result: 1 Hercules Wimbledon 79; 2 Belgrave 77; 3 Holland Sports 72; 4 Epsom & Ewell 59; 5 Serpentine 53; 6 Kingston & Polytechnic (holders) 23; 7 St Mary’s Richmond 22; 8 Walton 7.

Emilie Bokor-Ingram scored a fine individual double for the women’s team taking the 200m and 400m as well as finishing runner-up in the 100m before helping the relay team to second spot.

Lisa Thomas, Gina Galbraith and Eileen Brandley won the 800m, 1500m and 3000m respectively.

Maider Lizoain was second in the triple jump. Team manager Heather Jones finished second in the high jump and third in the 400m hurdles, also picking up points in the javelin and shot.

Heather Jones
Heather Jones
Women’s match result: 1 Belgrave 60; 2 Hercules Wimbledon 58.5; 3 Epsom & Ewell 41.5; 4 Serpentine 35; 5 St Mary’s Richmond 21.

Lisa Thomas led the Hercules Wimbledon title-winning effort at the British Masters Championships in Birmingham with a double gold medal-winning performance.

She took the over-50 400m in a season’s best of 64.86 winning by more than four seconds, and the 2000m steeplechase in 8:20.15, over 13 seconds clear.

Alison Murray won the over-50 pole vault with 2.80m and Anna Garner the over-60 1500m in 5:50.06. Another Hercules Wimbledon athlete, Mark White, took silver in the over 50 400m in a season’s best of 56.14.

The club’s runners dominated the Wimbledon Common 5km parkrun on Saturday filling the top three men’s places and providing the women’s winner.

Ben Toomer headed home the 429 field in 15:54, well clear of clubmates David Lewin (17:03) and Adam Harwood (17:17).

Gina Galbraith was first woman in 18:58 with Eileen Toomer third in  the women’s race. Twenty-one Hercules Wimbledon runners took part.

Charlie Eastaugh led in a 622-strong field in Coventry in a PB of 16:28 and posted the top age-graded performance, while Fran Clarke, finishing alongside husband and Hercules Wimbledon chairman Dave, was first woman finisher in the Kingston event in 20:27.

Ellen Weir returned to winning ways on the Isle of Wight taking the women’s race in 21:11, her fastest time since posting a personal best of 20:26 in February.

Richard McDowell took the tape in the Portobello parkrun in Edinburgh in a personal best of 16:09, taking 43 seconds off his PB set in November 2016. Kieran White led the field on his debut at Rushmere, near Leighton Buzzard in 18:09.

Fred Slemeck and Jonny Earl were second and third out of 371 runners on their debut appearances in Winchester in 16:17 and 16:23, respectively, Zipporah Golding showed her best form of the season in the England age group championships at Bedford over the weekend.

Surrey champion Golding, who has been hampered by injuries this summer, was fourth in her heat in the girls U15 100m (12.62) before taking seventh place in her semi-final in 12.59, her fastest time since posting her PB of 12.48 in winning the Surrey title last season.

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