Sunday 26 April
There were 8 runners from Ilford AC among the 37500 plus on the Greenwich start on an overcast chilly morning. Fastest from the club was Malcolm Muir who put in a tremendous race to smash the Club veteran Marathon record when finishing 143rd overall in a time of 2hrs 35mins 23secs, which also improved his best time for the distance by 3 seconds! This placed him as 16th master in the M40 category. Sam Rahman also set a new personal best of 2h 52m 54s despite finding the going tough in the last few miles. Close behind was Robin McNelis with 2h 53m 21s, while Kevin Wotton, who had his preparation interrupted by injury, recorded a good time of 3h 08m 31s. Next home for Ilford were 3 runners all recording new personal best times: Declan Cullen, who ran the two halves in exactly equal time, with 3h 42m 25s, Satha Alaganandasundaram, breaking 4 hrs for the first time with 3h 59m 27s and Rachel Halpin with 4h 01m 48s, an improvement of 28 minutes. Completing the line up was Julia Galea, making her marathon debut, exceeded all expectations with 4h 16m 33s. Members, relatives and friends manned the Club water station giving support and encouragement to thirsty runners and handing out a record amout of water as part of one of what is always one of the Capital’s greatest annual spectacles.
Those inspired by the event will have an immediate opportunity to do something positive about it as Ilford AC are running a 12 week “First Steps” improvers / beginners course supported by Redbridge Vision.The sessions are free and will be held on the Club’s Wednesday “Harriers” evenings at the Melbourne Road entrance of Valentines Park starting at 7pm on Wednesday 6th May. Look out for the Ilford flag. Further details can be found on the club web site at ilfordathleticclub.co.uk.
LONDON MINI MARATHON BOROUGH CHALLENGE INCORPORATING BRITISH ROAD CHAMPIONSHIPS
Ahmed Abdulle led the way for Redbridge & Ilford in this 3 mile race. Moving up an age group he put a excellent performance in coming 5th in 15-25 in the Borough Challenge race. He also represented London in the British road team champs finishing in 7th place .Usamah Patel with very little training of late surprised himself with 53rd in 16-39. The u/13 boys packed well with Arun Manget leading the way with 60th place in 18-35 Manjaj Gill 84th in 18-58 Bradley Deacon 121st in 19-32 and Farris Patel 129th in 19-42.
Ilford Back on Track
After absence of nearly five years, Ilford fielded a senior track team in the Southern athletics League at Braintree, last Saturday. In Ilford’s absence the league structure has changed and it is now a combined Men’s and Women’s league.
Injuries and marathon commitments meant Ilford’s small team of four Women and nine men was mainly made up of young sprinters and jumpers.
On the women’s side, Ilford only had four athletes, but the quality made up for the quantity. Ilford won both A and B strings in the women’s 100m, 200m, 400m and 800m.
Krystle Balogun ran within a tenth of a second of her best time in winning the 800m in 2.20.8, she followed this up by smashing her week old 400m PB with a time of 59.8 in winning the 400m. Unfortunately, Krystle then had to go to work and the Women were therefore unable to field relay teams.
Naomi Browne achieved a sprint double, winning the 100m by a clear margin in 12.8. She followed this up with a win in the 200m in 26.7. Later in the day she came 2 nd in the discus 17.74 and 2 nd in the High Jump with 1.60m.
Vicky Onyeka was even better with a sprint treble winning the 100m in 13.7, 200m in 27.4 and the 400m by a clear 8 seconds in 62.7. To finish off her busy afternoon Vicky also took 4 th place in the Hammer with 19.09.
Kelly Mavididi who is still nursing a long term injury opted for the longer distances. A brave front running attempt earned her 1 st place in the B string 800m in 2.27.7, she followed this up with a solid 3 rd place in the 1500m in 5.34.0, before rounding off the afternoon with 3 rd place in the discus with 17.85.
In the men’s events, first up was Gus singer, a former English Schools high hurdler. Gus rolled back the years in placing 5 th in the 400m hurdles in a time of 82 seconds. He followed this up with a 4 th place in the b string long jump with 4.20m, and despite injuring himself in the long jump still managed a throw of 30.96 m to take 4 th in the javelin.
Kelechi Okorie was impressive in winning the 100m in 11.6, but was even better in winning the 400m in 51.4. There was a strong headwind and favourable conditions he will surely clock sub 50 soon. To round things he was a member of both relay teams.
Amazigh Laoudi had a busy placing 3 rd in the 100m in 12.2, 2 nd in the 400m in 54.0, 3 rd in the 800m in 2.05.9, but capped this brilliant last leg of the 4x400m which ensured Ilford won the final event.
Mohammed Weyli was just a busy with a 2 nd place in the 200m in 22.8, 2 nd in the 800m in 2.04.5, 3 rd in the high Jump in 1.40m and ran a great second leg in the winning 4x400m relay team.
On his outdoor debut, Zehn Ahmed took 2 nd place in the 200m in 24.7, 5 th in the Long jump in 4.79m and also ran a leg of the 4x 100m.
Two others making their debuts were Nathan Meskell and Gbolade Ogunyemi; Nathan came 4 th in the Triple Jump with 9.61m, 4 th in the shot with 7.12m and ran non- scoring 200m in 26.1. Gbolade placed 5 th in the shot with 5.84m and also did a non-scoring 200m in 26.9
Jeffrey Nkrumah who is the coach to many of athletes also had a busy day with 4 th in Javelin with 25.93m, 5 th in 1500m and straight after finishing, he went to the Triple jump, which could be Jeffrey’s new event. He finished 4 th with an excellent 11.04m. To round off his day he also ran the 3 rd leg of the 4x400m relay. After spending all afternoon racking the sand pit, Andy Catton took 4 th place in the 5000m.
Ilford finished off 5 th overall with 154 points, in a match won by London Heathside with 333. It is hoped that a larger team will be fielded in the next match.