The final 2014 series meeting of the veteran’s athletics league (SCVAC) took place on Friday 18 July at Dartford. Duncan Cochrane kindly undertook the team management role in the absence of Geoffrey Kitchener (many thanks, Duncan).This presented some challenges in that we started short of two team members, although this was partly remedied by the arrival of Keith Dowson part way through the evening after surmounting travel difficulties.The team reshuffled their roles and managed to fill all events bar the M35 B string 800m slot.
The fastest division 2 scoring runner on the night was Martin White, who took first place in the M35 100m race with a scintillating 13.5 seconds. Other supporting sprinters were Richard Pitcairn-Knowles (competing against the ‘youngsters’ of the M35 B stream event) and Duncan.
The first track events were over the 800m distance, with Maurice Marchant filling in the M35 slot at the last moment, and with Duncan securing fourth place in the M50s, just edged out of third, in 2 minutes 46.7 seconds.Duncan finished just in time so as to be able to take a couple of jumps in the long jump competition (M50s) for fourth place, the same position as Martin in the M35 competition.Also in the 800m, Geoff Vine came fourth in 2 minutes 58.5 seconds, worth 24th place in the current UK M65 rankings.Another high-ranking performance was that by Richard in the M60s long jump, where his 2.10 metres is currently the top UK 2014 performance in the M80 age category (it is no detraction from the quality of this performance that it is the only one in this category during the current season; it is also a club best performance).
A further club best performance (M50) was set by Keith in the discus, where he threw out to 18.72 metres for fourth place.
Cloud had been gathering throughout the evening, with spectacular lightning.The rain held off until the final event, the medley relay, for which we had to reshuffle the original intended team.Keith started with the 800m leg, Martin and Richard undertook the 200m legs, and Duncan brought us home with 400m in the rain in fifth place.
Fifth place was also our position in the meeting overall and, having ceded fourth position to Swanley at this competition, the consequence was that these were the positions in the 2014 series overall.Given the complications in putting together the team on the night this was perhaps unsurprising; but there were nonetheless some excellent performances.
I attach the Dartford results.The result in Chris Desmond’s name does not reflect that this was actually Maurice Marchant’s performance, and the registration of a change in the team declaration on the night does not seem to have taken effect.
Over the 2014 series we have enjoyed contributions from a number of club members.Those competing in the series were: Duncan Cochrane, Ron Denney, John Denyer, Chris Desmond, Keith Dowson, Paul English, Geoffrey Kitchener, Maurice Marchant, Richard Pitcairn-Knowles, David Simpson, Geoff Vine, and Martin White. Well done, everyone!