BY GEOFF JERWOOD
Charlotte Alexander recorded a big personal best and a qualifying time for the European Junior Women’s Championship at a track meeting hosted by Birmingham University and the British Milers Club.
It was the U20’s first 3,000m race of the season.
Alexander, who is studying at the university, was racing a field which included the British senior women’s 5,000m champion Jess Judd.
Alexander’s 9:23.01 was only a couple of seconds outside Harriers’ club age group record held by Saskia Millard, now an U23, who was the designated pacemakeras part of her own early summer preparations.
Alexander’s previous best was 9:31 and she needed sub 9:30 for the qualifying standard, but finished well within this, placing fifth in the race. She now tops the British U20 women’s rankings for this year at both 3,000m and 5,000m. Her next race is expected to be at 5000m at the BMC Grand Prix in Manchester on May 8 where she will hope to achieve the Euro Junior Women’s qualifying time for this distance for a second time, but this time in a race with a female pacemaker rather than a male – as was the case in Battersea Park last month. An all-female race is a requirement of the GB team selection criteria.
Alexandra Brown returned to racing as she ran 4:30.77 for 1,500m in another quality race which was won in sub 4:15. It was her first race since winning a medal at the 2019 English Schools Championship Senior Girls 1,500m final and a promising first outing of the summer in a race in which she ran mostly solo.
The following evening Eric Dol ran a PB at the Harrow 3,000m Spring Open with 9:31.89.
In road racing over the weekend, five Herne Hill athletes competed at the Run Cheshire Elite Marathon and five came home with PBs.
Nick Bester placed 17th out of 150 finishers in 2:24.04, a PB by six minutes. Marc Geraghty also clocked a PB – placing 75th with 2:33.49 -followed by Andrew Grigg, 100th with 2:38.08.
Jenna Wilkinson achieved her target for this race of under three hours with her fine 2:59.00 as she placed 21st woman and Katie Rose was 28th woman in 3:07.31, a PB by 12 minutes but also requiring a visit to the medical tent after crossing the finish line.
Ryan Willmott won the 10 miles road race at the RunThrough Lee Valley Velo Park Races with a PB of 56:36.
A few younger Herne Hill athletes went to the Hercules Wimbledon Break Out Field Events meeting. U20 Ignatius Aberbrese won the long jump with 6.30m, with younger brother Nicholas seventh overall and best in his U13 age group with 3.60m.
Alexander Aberbrese was the winner of the U15 shot, throwing a PB 14.70m, which puts him at the head of the early season UK rankings for his age group. Also in the shot, U15 girl Victoria Alicante-King was a winner, her 12.63m also at the top of her age group in Britain this year.
Club youngsters were also out in force in cross country in action at the Downs League in Morden Park.
Harriers had individual winners in four of the six races – Caspian Holmes (U11 boys), Florence Mills (U11 girls), Jon Goldston (U13 boys) and Izzy Perry (U15 girls).
Orla Carroll was third in the U13 girls and Fabian Whitelock seventh in the U15 boys. In the U11 Boys Luke Attfield placed third, Edward Cunniliffe fifth and Jack Wesley sixth. In the U11 girls race Sophie Wright was fifth, Sofia Mendes came 10th and Jasmine Nkoso 14th – other finishers were Emelie Cherel (19th) and Alessia Cummings-McClinton (24th).
In the U13 boys race Goldston had support from Warren and Alex Wilson in sixth and seventh with Archie Penniceard (eighth), Dylan Gillies (11th), Jack McLennan (13th), Josh Maguire (26th), Alfie Bryan (27th), Felix Marsh (28th) and Biruk Cranwell (31st) completing the team.
Orla Wright was fourth in the U13 girls race followed by Sophie Jack (ninth), Bay Andreadis (10th), Anna Forster (11th) and Lucy Wright (15th).
In the U15 boys race Whitelock was followed in by Alex Jack (10th), Harry Bell (13th) and Robin Bebbington (18th).
Behind Perry’s stunning win in the U15 girls were Abbey Jeffcoat (third), Eva and Grace O’Hanlon (fourth and fifth), Vivi Marshall (11th), Rosalie Laban (12th) and Imogen Weller (28th).
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