North Devon Athletes compete on national stage at Gateshead

North Devon Gazette

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Isabel Wakefield came third in the under 17 women’s long jump at the English Schools’ Athletics Championships in Gateshead. Picture: Ewan SomervilleIsabel Wakefield came third in the under 17 women’s long jump at the English Schools’ Athletics Championships in Gateshead. Picture: Ewan Somerville

Eight North Devon athletes shone at the English Schools’ Athletics Championships last weekend, with two setting club records.

Competing in Gateshead, Isabel Wakefield of North Devon Athletics Club (NDAC) came third in the under 17 women’s long jump with a club record distance of 5.80m.

In the same age group, Maia Dart battled tough conditions to place sixth in the javelin with an NDAC record of 40.31m.

More stand out performances landed in the sandpit as Caitlin Gallagher came 18th in the under 17 women’s triple jump with a distance of 10.45m, and Emily Tyrrell placed 11th in the under 15 girls’ long jump final with 4.98m.

Caitlin Gallagher competed in the under 17 women’s triple jump at the English Schools’ Athletics Championships in Gateshead. Picture: Ewan SomervilleCaitlin Gallagher competed in the under 17 women’s triple jump at the English Schools’ Athletics Championships in Gateshead. Picture: Ewan Somerville

Elsewhere on the field, Emma Sharpe, who is a first year in her age group, placed 14th in the under 17 women’s discuss with a distance of 30.80m.

On the track, the 1500m steeplechase saw under 17 Evee May Banbury finish 10th with a personal best time of 5 minutes 21 seconds, whilst Martika Gallagher of the under 20s finished 11th in 5 minutes 20 seconds.

Caitlin’s sister Megan also excelled, reaching the final of the 300m hurdles and crossing the line sixth in a time of 45.80 seconds.

Reflecting on her feat, she told the Gazette: “I’m happy that I got to the final, but upset I didn’t get podium position as my personal best time would have placed me second.”

Megan Gallagher reached the final of the 300m hurdles at the English Schools’ Athletics Championships in Gateshead. Picture: Ewan SomervilleMegan Gallagher reached the final of the 300m hurdles at the English Schools’ Athletics Championships in Gateshead. Picture: Ewan Somerville

Issy Wakefield, who will be relocating to London for heptathlon training this September, said: “It was a great surprise for me as the long jump isn’t my main event, so to pull out a PB of almost 20cm on competition day was the icing on the cake.

“I never become overwhelmed by the occasion of a big championship; if I take everything one step at a time and be consistent, I know I will have a good chance of reaping the rewards that I deserve.”

North Devon athletes to represent South West at championships

North Devon Gazette

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Nine athletes from North Devon have been selected to represent the region at the English Schools’ Athletics Championships.

The North Devon Athletics Club members qualified as members of a strong Devon team at the South West Schools’ Athletics Championships in Exeter.

In the 1500m Steeplechase, Evee May Banbury qualified in the inter girls category and Martika Gallagher in the senior girls.

They were joined on the field by inter girl Emma Sharpe, who qualified for the discus, and Maia Dart for the javelin.

The long jump saw Emily Tyrrell qualify for the junior girls and national-standard heptathlete Isabel Wakefield who had already met the benchmark prior to the competition, for the inter girls,.

Max Whitecross also excelled in the senior boys long jump, setting a new personal best of 6.60m.

The jump means he will be a reserve for the South West team.

But it was twin sisters Megan and Caitlin Gallagher who again set the track alight.

Megan sailed through her 300m Hurdles heat, going on to become South West champion in a winning time of 44.22 seconds.

This was a tenth below her former personal best of 44.32, set at Exeter the previous weekend.

Meanwhile, her sister Caitlin fought a nail-biting battle in the triple jump, overcoming a series of no jumps to win with a distance of 11.04m, 14cm ahead of the English Schools’ qualifying standard.

The nine athletes will compete for national titles at the English Schools’ Championships in Gateshead on July 8 and 9.