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National Junior Womens League

Report by: Bryan Murray

10th September 2000 - Alexander Stadium, Birmingham

Wakefield Harriers National Junior League women's team claimed fourth place in the UK finals held at Birmingham - despite a number of mishaps on the day.

Already lacking multi-eventers Tara Wilson and Ruth Laybourn, the U20 team suffered further problems as Alex Carr and Amy Ridsdale were both involved in incidents which saw them taken to hospital within the first hour of the match. Alex suffered seriously sprained ankle ligaments and Amy was overcome by the heat and exhaustion in the humid conditions. Both athletes were able to be returned to the stadium before the conclusion of the match.

Again, a superb sprint performance from GB international Fiona Westwood saw her achieve yet another personal best as she claimed second spot in the 100m in a time of 12.11. Further success came as she easily won the long jump, into a headwind, with a leap of 5.77m.

Katy Richardson claimed a double in this event as she finished first in the B event, jumping 5.31m - an excellent performance after several weeks of injury problems.

Helen Taylor was rewarded for her first place in the hammer A as her throw of 43.79m gained her the prestigious award of Athlete of the Match to cap a superb season with much more to come next year.

Sarah Drake won the hammer B and achieved a pb with a fine throw of 34.76m, an excellent end to her first season of competition with the team.

Javelin ace Michelle Lonsdale was well clear in first place with a throw of 38.76.

Multi-eventer Emma Morris also had a good day claiming second place in the A shot with 11.28m, third place in the 100m hurdles (17.78) and second place in the javelin B with 23.70m.

At the conclusion of a busy season, several athletes were affected by the heavy conditions, but the team did Wakefield proud with their gutsy efforts.

The team has suffered many setbacks through injuries in 2000 and it is a wonderful achievement for them to finish as the fourth best under 20 team in the UK out of a total of 189 teams.

Other members of the National UK final team were Vicky Lambert, Victoria Lockwood Helen Singleton, Becky Fender, Aine Hoban, Laura Sheard, Samantha Colley, Faith Grant, Emily Mason and Kirsty Hodson, who all made valuable contributions to achieve the honours.

Match result: 1 Sale Harriers 311.5 points, 2 Birchfield Harriers 254, 3 Liverpool Harriers and AC 222, 4 Wakefield Harriers 207.5, City of Norwich 199.5, 6 Ashford AC 181, 7 Shaftesbury Barnet Harriers 171.5, Hillingdon 152.

Individual results:

100m A: Fiona Westwood 12.11 (2nd); B: Vicky Lambert 13.28 (4th); 200m A: Fiona Westwood 26.54, B: Victoria Lockwood 28.74 (6th); 400m A: Vicky Lambert 62.69 (7th), B: Helen Singleton 63.81 (7th); 800m A: Helen Singleton 2.24.76, B: Becky Fender 2:34.74; 1500m A: Aine Hoban 5:19.11, B: Laura Sheard 5:39.83; 3000m A: Samantha Colley 12:02.90, B: Faith Grant 13:24.31; 100m hurdles A: Emily Mason disq, B: Emma Morris 17.78 (3rd); 400m hurdles: Kirsty Hodson 73.44 (5th) B: Amy Ridsdale 86.67 (5th); discus: Sarah Drake 25.08m (5th), B: Katie Richardson 20.49m (4th); hammer A: Helen Taylor 43.79m (1st), B: Sarah Drake 34.76m (1st); high jump A: Emily Mason 1.55m (equal 2 B: Kirsty Hodson 1.35m (equal 6th); javelin A: Michelle Lonsdale 38.76m (1st) B: Emma Morris 23.70m (2nd): long jump A: Fiona Westwood 5.77m (1st), B: Katie Richardson 5.31m (1st); pole vault A: Emma Morris 2.20m (3rd), B; Alex Carr 1.80m (5th); shot putt A: Emma Morris 11.28m (2nd), B: Amy Ridsdale 8.13 (5th ); triple jump A: Vicky Lambert 8.50m (7th), B: Michelle Lonsdale 8.18m (7th); 100m relay: Wakefield 51.22 (4th); 4x400m relay: Wakefield 4:23.86 (7th).