Fiona Matheson on her way to a new British Record at W60 (photo by Bobby Gavin)
Records, medals and the experience of competing in National Championships once again.
Our 4J Studios CE and Masters Champs delivered all three – and a bit more – at the Ayrshire Athletics Arena in Kilmarnock.
Getting back on the track and in the field has been the priority for athletes of all ages and stages this summer and nothings stirs the competitive instincts more than National Championships.
We spoke to Masters duo Fiona Davidson of Aberdeen AAC and Paul Allan of Pitreavie AAC and the message was clear: it’s great to be back.
‘Competition opportunities have been few and far between during Covid-19 times, although we were grateful for Open Graded events last summer (Meadowmill and Aberdeen),’ said Fiona.
‘So I think you just have to seize the chance. If there is a competition on and you feel good then you just have to go for it.
‘I’m still very motivated to compete as a Masters athlete and when you see the top performances by elite Scots – like Laura Muir and Jemma Reekie on Friday night in Monaco – I think that really does spur everyone on. I know it motivates me.’
Fiona Matheson never needs any extra motivation to chase Records and the Falkirk Victoria Harriers athlete is already enjoying a 2021 purple patch.
After recent success on the roads over 5k, it was back to the track at Kilmarnock as Fiona delivered a 1500m run in 5:08.11 which took down the W60 British Record in that event.
In the 3000m Masters steeplechase, there were double Scottish Record-winning performances to sabour.
Mark Gallacher of Cambuslang Harriers dipped his toe back into the steeplechase with a fine run of 10:54.35 that brought him a Scottish M50 Record.Mark took down the Record held by Jim Buchanan.
Dumfries athlete Jim was in the same race – and duly set a new Scottish M55 Record of 11:28.87 (held previously by Benjamin Hands). With both Records falling by 25 seconds there was every reason for Mark and Jim to feel thrilled by their performances.
That elation will have been felt by other medallists and competitors, too, and it was pleasing to note widespread appreciation from the Masters community to scottishathletics for staging the event.
Seeing double . . . there were Scottish Masters Records in the 3000m steeplechase for Mark Gallacher and Jim Buchanan (photos by Bobby Gavin)
The Combined Events Championships gave athletes across the age groups the chance to savour a competition experience once again outdoors – after a two-year gap.
William Hodi of North Ayrshire AC took full advantage to post 5971 points and lead Senior/U20 competition.
Matt Chandler of Kilbarchan was second (top Senior) with 5275 and Team East Lothian’s Adam Hoole was third with 5229.
In the Women’s Heptathlon for Senior/U20s, there was a win for Rosie Sharples of Falkirk Victoria Harriers with 4601 points from Amy Kennedy of Cumbernauld AAC on 4506.
Third place (and U17 gold) went the way of Stroma Fraser of Inverness Harriers with 4251.
*On Sunday it was good to see athletes taking on our Open Hurdles event.
Thanks to all our dedicated team of scottishathletics Officials, volunteers and staff at East Ayrshire Leisure for their help over the weekend.
Falkirk athlete Rosie Sharples on her way to CE gold (photo by Bobby Gavin)
Medallists in each of the age groups were as follows:
1 Matthew Chandler, Kilbarchan, 5275
1 William Hodi, Nairn, 5977;2 Adam Hoole, Team East Lothian, 5229
1 Daniel Martin, Giffnock North, 4997; 2 Jonathan Cameron, Inverclyde, 4883; 3 Caleb McLeod, Pitreavie, 4249
1 Callum Newton, Dunfermline T&F Club, 2821; 2 Brayden Dean, Kilmarnock Harriers, 2357; 3 James Clark, VP Glasgow, 2203
1 Ross Mitchell, Kilmarnock Harriers, 1707; 2 Donald Ross, Team East Lothian, 1639; 3 Ray Taylor, Falkirk Victoria Harriers, 1483
1 Phoebe Lewis, North Ayrshire, 3226; 2 Gemma Bolton, Team East Lothian, 1964
1 Rosie Sharples, Falkirk Victoria Harriers, 4601; 2 Amy Kennedy, Cumbernauld, 4506; 3 Hannah Wallace, Cumbernauld, 3704
1 Stroma Fraser, Inverness Harriers, 4251; 2 Brooke Dunlop, Kilmarnock Harriers, 4139; 3 Darcie Black, Dunfermline T&F Club, 3933
1 Victoria Anestik, Falkirk Victoria Harriers, 2699; 2 Hannah McDermott, VP Glasgow, 2671; 3 Ellen MacLeod, Banchory Stonehaven, 2658
1 Molly Mills, Stockport Harriers, 2335; 2 Grace Malley, Whitemoss, 2236; 3 Lucy Jones, Stockport Harriers, 2167
1 Jerry Musselwhite (M60), Yate, 4604
With thanks to Caitlin Watt
Photo by Bobby Gavin