Blackburn Harriers & AC

Category Archives: Track & Field

Comments Off on Harriers welcome Sophie Hitchon with her Commonwealth Games Bronze Medal

Harriers welcome Sophie Hitchon with her Commonwealth Games Bronze Medal

Sophie Hitchon just back from the European Championships in Glasgow came down to the Track to train and to share her Bronze Medal success at the Commonwealth Games with other athletes at the Club, some of whom had actually been at the Games to see her win the Medal and they were all absolutely delighted to see her.

SONY DSCSophie’s success at the Commonwealth Games adds another medal to an already impressive list of honours – see below – gained at such a young age.

2007 – England Athletics U17 Open Championships HT gold
2008 – England Athletics U20 Open Championships HT gold
2009 – English Schools championships HT gold, England Athletics U20 Open Championships HT gold
2010 – Aviva European Trials & UK Championships HT silver, Aviva England U20 & World Trials Championships HT gold
2011 – BUCS Championships HT gold. Aviva World Trials & UK Championships HT gold. Aviva European U23 Trials & UK Championships HT gold
2012 – Aviva Olympic Trials & UK Championships HT gold
2013 – England Athletics U23 Championships & European Trials HT gold

Major Championships and International Highlights
2013 – IAAF World Championships HT 10th q. European Athletics Team Championships HT bronze. European Athletics U23 Championships HT gold
2012 – Olympic Games HT 12th, European Championships HT 11th
2011 – IAAF World Championships 13th q. Spar European Team Championships HT 9th. European U23 Championships HT bronze
2010 – IAAF World Junior Championships HT gold
2009 – European Junior Championships HT bronze
2008 – World Junior Championships HT 7th, Commonwealth Youth Games HT gold

Sophie with some of the Junior Athletes

On seeing Sophie’s Medal, Amy Davies simply said “I am having one of those” and who would bet against her.

SONY DSCThe achievements of athletes like Sophie, Holly Bleasdale, Samantha Murray and Alison Leonard have shown that with real commitment and hard work anything is possible and there is no reason why young athletes shouldn’t think about their athletics future in those terms. The sky is the limit – or as we might also say – there are no limits to what you can achieve.


Sophie with other members of the Harriers Hammer Squad

Sophie with other members of the Harriers Hammer Squad

L-R Sophie; Rebecca Orrell 2014 English Schools Finalist and and U17 Northern Championships Silver Medal); Chloe Needham (BW&FAC); Jack Vickery (Northern League Senior Squad) Jacob Roberts (2014 English Schools Finalist and Northern Championships U15 Gold Medal); Connor Davison (YDL Upper Age Group Squad)

Comments Off on Gold, Silver & Bronze Medals for the Harriers at U15 & U17 Northern T & F Championships – and Inter-Counties Junior Championships

Gold, Silver & Bronze Medals for the Harriers at U15 & U17 Northern T & F Championships – and Inter-Counties Junior Championships

U15 Jacob Roberts and U17 Rebecca Orrell have had a terrific season in the Throws and particularly the Hammer. Both competed this weekend at the Northern Championships in Wigan and carried on the great form they have displayed all season.

Both Day’s Results  HERE

Jacob contested the U15 Boys Hammer and won it with a throw of 48.22m. He had his first competitive throw this year in the 4kg Hammer at the Mid Lancs on April 26th opening with 31.28m. In the months since then he has put on 17m which is a tremendous performance. He currently stands at the top of the U15 Hammer Rankings in the North West and seventh Nationally. Jacob also set a new PB in the Discus by nearly a metre with a throw of 28.54m.

Watch Video Here for Jacob

Rebecca contested the U17 Hammer (3kg) which turned out be a competition of high standard with the first six athletes all throwing over 40m and the winner throwing a Championship Best Performance of 53.18m. Tenth place threw 34.91m which reflected the overall quality. Rebecca took a great Silver Medal in this with a throw of 47.11m. In the 3kg Rankings Rebecca now stands at 17th Nationally and first in the North West. For the 4kg Hammer again she is in first place in the North West and 11th Nationally. In the Discus Final Rebecca finished ninth with 22.98m which was someway off her best of 30m and 10th in the Shot Putt throwing 9.31m.


10424227_678132538934340_7099781730890420613_n-1U17 Morgan Angland contested the Long Jump and took a Bronze Medal with a new PB of 5.07m and another Bronze Medal in the 80mHurdles in a time of 12.31 which was a great result especially following a period in which she has missed training through injury.


Inter-Counties Track & Field Championships

Inter-Counties Results HERE

Five Harriers were selected for the Northern Junior Inter-Counties T & F Championships at Derby on August 2nd and all of them contributed to a good Lancashire effort on the day.

U15 Cameron Massey finished second in the 80mH ‘B’ Race with 13.36 and then took third place in the ‘A’ Long Jump (5.34m). U15 Morgan Angland placed 2nd in the 80mH (12.34) and U15 Polly Pearse won the ‘B’ Race in 13.36. U17 Rebecca Orrell set a new PB of 10.04m in the ‘B’ Shot Putt for 2nd place and U17 Archie Braysford finished 4th in the 100m in 11.44.




Comments Off on Mike Hazlewood going strong at Vets Championships Home and Abroad

Mike Hazlewood going strong at Vets Championships Home and Abroad

 V65 and 68yrs Mike Hazlewood is still going strong and recently competed in the Swedish National Masters Championships on July 25/26th just two weeks before coming home to Britain and contesting the British Masters Championships.

In Sweden Mike entered the Discus placing 3rd with 39.03m and was “really pleased with that” – came 5th with 10.26m in the Shot Putt which he described as “average” – in the Weight he came  6th with 13.88m “disappointing as I have thrown 14.50 this year!” Mike took 7th in the Hammer with 36.09m saying it was “not as good as hoped”……After the event Mike commented that “It was always going to be hard to get amongst the medals at the ‘wrong end’ of the age group. Next up GB Masters in Brum in 2 weeks”.

And so to Birmingham on August 9th & 10th. Here Mike did really well. Mike took three Silver Medals in the Discus with 39.79m – the Hammer 31.23m and Weight with 12.94m. Added to that he just missed out on a Bronze Medal in the Javelin when he finished 4th with 35.63m, just 35 cms off third place. Mike also had a 4th place in the Shot putt with 10.03m…great performance.

 British Masters Results HERE


Comments Off on Great effort by the Harriers at Northern League Division One Fixture

Great effort by the Harriers at Northern League Division One Fixture

In Fixture 4 of the Northern League Division One on Saturday at Blackpool, the Harriers needed a really good result if they were to avoid having to go to the Play Off Match. And the Team delivered, winning the fixture by twenty four points from Kingston Upon Hull in second place and Wakefield in third.

Team Manager Richard Taylor commented after the Fixture that “Overall it’s been a great spirit amongst the squad with athletes prepared to step in and cover for a late no-show, illness or injury and we had some great examples of this on Saturday with Chris Barnes competing in the Chase at 10 minutes notice and others in the squad filling slots at short notice. 30 Male and 21 Female athletes have taken part in the league this year with 18 Male and 11 Female there on Saturday. So it’s been a real squad effort right the way through. Of the 51 athletes, we had 12 x U20 and 12 x U17 that have played a major part in the Senior squads efforts whilst also carrying the UKYDL squad to a back to back promotion and you could see that despite the tired bodies and minds, there was still a strong desire from them to do the best they could for the team”.

Full Results HERE


The Throwers again picked up invaluable points in the fixture. Sarah Henton won the ‘A’ Discus with 48.18m – won the ‘B’ Hammer (33.26m) – finished 3rd in the ‘B’ Javelin (25.95m) – came 3rd in the ‘A’ Shot Putt (10.38m) and also ran in the 200m as well as a leg of the 4 x 100m Relay to add to the Team’s points total – a tremendous performance. Rebecca Orrell won the ‘B’ Discus (28.57m) with a seasons best – placed 4th in the Hammer (4kg) with 37.73m – and then like Sarah ran a leg of the 4 x 100m Relay. Rebecca Sullivan back from a long period of injury took a solid third place in the ‘B’ Shot Putt (8.29m), came 4th in the ‘A’ Javelin (26.51m), won the ‘B’ 100mH and was second ‘A’ High Jump with 1.55m.


SONY DSCThe Male Throwers also added good points on the day. Tony Balko took 3rd place in the ‘B’ Hammer (27.62m), fifth in the ‘A’ Shot Putt (9.31m) and fifth again in the ‘A’ Discus (27.70m). Jack Vickery, home from University for the summer took a third place in the ‘A’ Hammer (39.99m) and two 4th places in the ‘B’ Shot Putt (7.56m) and ‘B’ Discus (24.57m). Joe Pearse ‘B’ 4th (32.80m) and and Paul Wilkinson ‘A’ (32.84) covered the Javelin.


SONY DSC     SONY DSCIn the Jumps there was another quality performance from bottom of age U20 Ben Aspinall. Ben posted yet another PB of 13.34m in the Triple Jump and won the ‘A’ competition. In addition he jumped 2.50m for a 4th place in the ‘A’ Pole Vault and jumped 6.02m in the ‘A’ Long Jump (4th). Kail Sturgess won the ‘B’ Triple Jump with 12.31m which made that a winning double and Ross Liddle took 3rd place in the ‘B’ Long Jump with 5.56m which was a fourth consecutive PB in his last four competitions and also ran as part of the Men’s 4 x 100m Relay Team. In the ‘A’ High Jump Joe Pearse took 2nd (1.90m) and Oliver Aspden won the ‘B’ with 1.75m and continued their joint success of posting a lot of points for the Club throughout the season in this event.


SONY DSCThere were two third places in the Women’s Triple Jump for Polly Pearse ‘A’ with 9.50m and Sophie Taylor ‘B’ (8.39m). In the Long Jump there was nothing between the two athletes with Olivia Brooks taking 4th in the ‘A’ (4.88m) and Morgan Angland 2nd in the ‘B’ (4.86m). In the HIgh Jump Rebecca Sullivan in the ‘A’ placing 2nd and Polly Pearse in the winning the ‘B’ both jumped 1.55m for another good total of points.


SONY DSCOver in the Hurdles, both Sprint and Long, the Harriers athletes including – Oliver Aspden, Connor Makin, Joe Pearse, Katie Buckingham, Roxanne Oliver, Sophie Taylor, Kail Sturgess and Rebecca Sullivan have won a lot of points over the season for the Club. In the 400mH Katie took 2nd place in the ‘A; (72.1) and Sophie  won the ‘B’ with 75.1. Sophie backed that up with a second in the ‘A’ 100mH (16.1) and Rebecca took first place in the ‘B’. Over in the Men’s 400m Hurdles Oliver  won the ‘A’ in 56.3 and Connor was 2nd in the ‘B’ (58.7). Oliver with a stand out new PB by seven tenths of a second came 2nd in the ‘A’ with 15.3 and Kail also 2nd in the ‘B’ (17.5) kept the points total moving forward.



In the Sprints Paul Coffey in the ‘A’ 100m took 3rd place in 11.4 (which was won in an equaled League Record time of 10.6) and Dominic Bretherton ran a new PB by two tenths for 3rd place in the ‘B’ with 11.4. Paul ran 23.2 for fourth in the 200m and Oliver Aspden in his first appearance over 200m this season came second in the ‘B’ with 22.6. In the Women’s Sprints Morgan Angland doubled up in the 100m (4th in 13.4) and in her first ever 200m as an U17 came 5th in 27.9. Sophie Taylor ran a seasons best in the 100m (5th in 14.3) and Thrower Sarah Henton took on the 200m (5th in 35.0) after the original athlete had to pull out with injury.



From 400m through to 5000m there were some good races and a good standard of performances. Connor Makin ran 56.1 in the ‘A’ 400m (6th) and Morgan Phillips 55.1 (4th) in the ‘B’ Race. Five of the athletes in both Races ran under 52 seconds. There were two second places in the Men’s 800m for Zac Howe in the ‘A’ in 1.57.6, just two tenths off the winner and Rob Warner in the ‘B’ 1.58.0. Two more seconds for the Harriers in the 1500m with Ben Fish ‘A’ 4.05.4 and Rob Warner ‘B’ 4.12.0. Ben Fish after a tough race against Josh Bull in the 1500m remains undefeated in the Northern League with another victory in the ‘A’ 5000m (15.13.2). Returning from injury and in his first Northern League Fixture this year, Karl Billington made it a great double for the Harriers winning the ‘B’ in 15.42.8, holding off a spirited challenge from David Rigby at the end. Joseph Howe held off the Sale and Wakefield athletes in the ‘A’ 3000m Steeple Chase to finish a solid 3rd ( and more than a bit wet!!) in 10.51.4. Chris Barnes answered the call for the Team and ran with just ten minutes notice in the ‘B’ taking good points in second place (11.09.3).

Ever dependables Katie Buckingham and Phoebe Howe took on the 400m with Katie taking 5th (64.3) in the ‘A’ and Phoebe 3rd in the ‘B’ (66.5). The two athletes then swapped places in the 800m with Phoebe running the ‘A’ (4th in 2.34,9) and Katie 2nd in the ‘B’ 2.36.9. Beckie Taylor took two good second places in the ‘A’ 1500m (5.17.4) and ‘A’ 3000m (11.07.4). Rachel Wood in only her fourth competition this year backed up Beckie’s performances with wins in the ‘B’ 1500m (5.23.0) and 3000m (11.15.3).





The Team Manager taking a breather during a hectic day

The Team Manager taking a breather at the end of a long and hectic day

Comments Off on Mid Lancs League at Preston and Lancaster – 18 PB’s and a New Club Record

Mid Lancs League at Preston and Lancaster – 18 PB’s and a New Club Record

Contrasting weekend weather with glorious sunshine at Preston (July 26th) and wind and rain at Lancaster (August 3rd) for the last two Mid Lancs T & F Fixtures before the Medal Meeting at Blackpool on Saturday August 30th.

Preston Results HERE

Twenty two Harriers at Preston and once again some good performances and PB’s. Amongst the new personal bests were English Schools Finalist U15 Jacob Roberts who like a number of our other young Throwers are doing really well this year, set a new PB in the Hammer in winning the event with 44.30m – four and half metres improvement on his previous best. He then went on to the Shot Putt placing 3rd (9.33m) another PB by nearly half a metre and Discus which he won with 24.60m. U17 Rebecca Orrell, also an English Schools Finalist  had a good day too in Shot Putt with a 3rd (8.52m) – Discus 2nd (23.17m) and winning the Hammer with a throw of 45.78m. 

U13 Amy Davies won the 800m in a new PB of 2.41.9 knocking a whopping seven seconds of her previous time which was a great run and she too is a young athlete (bottom of age) who is having a very good first year debut on the Track. U20 Paul Coffey came 4th in the 100m (11.30) – 200m 3rd (23.40) and Long Jump (4.42m). Senior Reece Philips doubled up in the 200m and 400m finishing 6th 200m (25.80) and 6th 400m (57.80) which was a good showing coming back from a long lay off with injury. Brother U20 Morgan Philips had a really good run in the 400m (52.80) setting a new PB by over a second for 3rd place and was just outside his PB in the 1500m 3rd (4.26.80). Senior John Cookson also went in the 800m – 13th (2.34.50).


U20 Ben Aspinall contested the Long Jump finishing 3rd with 5.79m. In the Triple Jump Ben came 2nd with 13.12m and in the Javelin was 5th (27.72m). The day after the Mid Lancs Fixture at Preston, Ben competed for the YDL Team at Crewe and posted a new PB for the Javelin (29.27m). Not content with that, he then went to Trafford the following Tuesday and improved his Triple Jump PB even further to 13.23m – a quality season for Ben this year. U17 Oliver Pearson-Moore improved his PB in the Javelin (31.82m) by nearly two metres and was a fine performance in his first season and only fourth competitive throw. U15 Nick Massey 400m 2nd (59.70) – set a new PB in the High Jump 4th (1.50m) and in the Shot Putt finished 6th (8.00m). English Schools athlete U15 Cameron Massey won the Long Jump with 5.18m was 6th in the  High Jump (1.45m) and also won the Shot Putt with a new PB of 10.55m.  U15 Anthony Kent back in training for the Throws and into only his third competition of the season set a new PB in the Shot Putt with a 9th placed (7.40m) which put nearly half a metre on his previous best and then set another PB in the Discus 7th (21.36m) an increase of a metre and half. New member U15 Lucas Davies took part in only his second competition of the season in the Shot Putt placing 11th (4.46m) and 10th in the Discus (15.77m).

U15 Sam Pearson-Moore was just outside his PB in the Javelin 3rd (30.35m). U13 Daniel Brown ran in the 1500m 4th (6.01.70). U17 Olivia Brooks placed 3rd in the Long Jump  (4.54m) and won the High Jump (1.45m). English Schools Finalist U17 Rebecca Orrell was 3rd in the Shot Putt  (8.52m) – Discus 2nd (23.17m) and won the Hammer with (45.78m). U15 Hannah Cookson ran the 800m 4th (2.35.30) and was 13th in the Long Jump (3.87m). U13 Emily Raine contested the 100m 5th (15.40m) and 200m 7th (33.20). U13 Emily Warren in running the 200m 2nd (28.40) set a NEW CLUB RECORD and in the 800m she was just two tenths of a second off her PB 4th (2.34.50) then in the Long Jump Emily set another PB by 10cm with 4.04m.

U13 Olivia Blow made her debut at the 200m distance and came 2nd (31.70) in a time equal to the winner.  The U13 Girls  4 x 100m Girls Relay came 1st (57.10) and are looking for an opportunity to break the Club Record – maybe at the Medal meeting. U13 Charlotte Williams was just cm’s away from her PB in the Long Jump 9th (3.88m) threw Shot Putt (3.00kg) for 4th (7.54m)and set a big PB in the Discus by over two metres to finish 3rd (19.39m). U13 Eloise Littlefair set another PB in the Shot Putt 1st (9.26m) by 13cms threw 21.00m in winning the Discus – and in the Javelin came 2nd (25.00m).


…..And on to Lancaster with the wind and rain…..

Lancaster Results HERE

Senior Brandon Zinyemba in his first outing of the season ran a solid 100m 3rd (11.30). Paul Coffey doubled up in the 100m 1st (11.40) and also won the 200m (23.30). Hanzala Hanif back in training after a month out made his debut in the 100m placing 3rd (13.00) to set a new PB. Sam Farnworth added to the list of PB’s with a really good run in the 100m 4th (14.10) knocking two tenths of a second off his previous best.  Roxanne Oliver ran a solid 100m 2nd (13.50) and posted a new PB in the Shot Putt 4th (7.07m). Ben Aspinall in the100m was 3rd (12.30) a little outside his PB. Oliver Aspden won the 400m (52.50). Huzaifa Hanifand like brother Hanzala having missed a month of training – cut half a second off his100m PB finishing  7th (12.70) and ran the  400m 2nd (56.20). Nick Massey 100m 3rd (12.90), made his debut at 400m finishing 3rd (62.60) and ended the day in the Shot Putt placing 11th (6.40m).





Continuing his successful year Jacob Roberts came 3rd in the Shot Putt (8.91m), added three metres to his Discus PB in finishing 2nd (27.59m) and then in the Hammer came 1st (45.93m) with yet another new PB which take him to first place in the North West rankings and 8th in the National Rankings. Anthony Kent went in the Discus 7th (19.63m). U13 Daniel Brown ran the 1500m 6th (6.12.60). Katie Buckingham contested the 200m finishing 2nd (28.90) and won the 800m (2.33.10). Sarah Henton on a rare outing at the Mid Lancs won the Discus with (47.93m). Olivia Brooks had two wins in the Long Jump (4.75m) and  High Jump (1.40m). Charlotte Williams equalled her PB in the100m 3rd (14.90) threw in the Shot Putt placing 3rd (7.86m) and in the Discus came 4th (16.24m). Emily Warren ran in the 200m 1st (29.10) – 800m 4th (2.35.80) and  Long Jump 4th (3.90m). Eloise Littlefair in the Shot Putt (3.0kg) finished 2nd (8.05m), in the Discus 1st (20.78m) and Javelin won with a throw of (22.90m). Eloise is another young athlete who has had a tremendous season setting PB’s and four new Club Records.





Comments Off on Successive YDL League Titles for the Harriers Upper Age Group Team

Successive YDL League Titles for the Harriers Upper Age Group Team

Another great performance by the Harriers at Crewe on Sunday July 29th saw them finish 2nd to Trafford by just four points on the day and finishing up Division One Champions. Newly promoted from Division Two the year before which they also won, this latest title was a credit to all of the athletes who contributed and not least to those who came in for their first ever competitive fixture such as Tom Mckee, Zee Sabbir and Mariya Patel and all those athletes who competed in events for the very first time to help the team out.


A big thank you to Team Managers Jan Buckingham and Wendy Hitchon who have now secured back to back League Titles in the first two years of the YDL.

Happy Harriers on the Road back from Crewe...... Chris hugging the front of the photo in front of Katie & Roxie!!

Happy Harriers on the Road back from Crewe…… Chris hugging the front of the photo in front of Katie & Roxie!!

...and these two are Hurdlers

…and these two are Hurdlers

Full Results HERE

Women’s Team Manager Jan Buckingham was understandably delighted and commented ” What a fantastic day. We were very low on girls numbers, but fortunately the boys were out on mass. Fabulous commitment, team spirit and enthusiasm. Going into this fixture in first position we knew we had to keep Trafford and Wigan in our sights, but Wigan just did not have a team on the day, so it was really a Blackburn / Trafford battle. I don’t want to single out specific athletes, but I can say everyone did maximum events some of which were definitely out of their comfort zones. However I do want to mention the guys who did multiple endurance events, tremendous effort, particularly in the heat. The result on the day, was a second to Trafford by only 4 points, but overall Blackburn are champions of the division. As team manager I just want to say what a great bunch of young people I have had to work with, thank you. The day was only marred by the coach breaking down on the way home!!!!!” Men’s Team Manager Wendy Hitchon who was at the Commonwealth Games watching daughter Sophie Medal in the Hammer said Well done team, gutted I wasn’t there but you did me proud”.

On the day the Harriers posted twenty five wins with seventeen second and twenty third places. Even more pleasing was the fact that the athletes again produced a number of PB’s – eighteen in all and five season’s bests including U20 Ben Aspinall in the Javelin (29.27m) – U17 Sprinter Jake Almond Hammer (22.08m) – U20 Sprinter Paul Coffey Hammer (15.26m) – U17 Oliver Pearson-Moore Shot Puut (8.17m) – U17 Jane Saothong Long Jump (4.07m) – U17 Caleb Lee High Jump (1.55m) and Triple Jump (11.23m) – U17 Byron Abbott 400m (57.4) – U20 Roxanne Oliver 400m (64.1) and Discus (15.16m) – U20 Robert Buckley 800m (2.10.4) and 300m 10.06.04) – U17 Lewis Jardine 800m (2.15.8 and Long Jump (5.25m) – U20 Joseph Howe 3000m (10.03.07). Seasons bests were posted by U17 Phoebe Howe 800m (2.37.8) – U17 Polly Pearse 80mH (13.3) – U20 Katie Buckingham Discus (14.61m) and U20 Joe Pearse Javelin (38.66).

Individual events won by the Team included U17 Caleb Lee in the Triple Jump – U17 Rebecca Orrell Hammer – U20 Ben Aspinall Triple Jump – U20 Joseph Howe 2000m S/C and 800m – U17 Phoebe Howe 1500m S/C – U17  Byron Abbott 1500m S/C – U20 Katie Buckingham 400m Hurdles and 400m – U20 Kail Sturgess 110m Hurdles – 400m Hurdles and Long Jump – U20 Joe Pearse 110m Hurdles and 400m – U20 Connor Makin with four wins in 400m, 400mH, High Jump and Triple Jump – U17 Archie Braysford 100m – U20 Robert Buckley 1500m and 3000m – U17 Lewis Jardine 1500m – U17 Chris Richardson-Dulling 3000m and U20 Lottie Latham Taylor 100m.

Thank you to Jane Saothong for all the photo’s

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