Andover AC’s annual Young Athletes Meeting was back on home ground at the Charlton Sports Centre after absence of a year due to extensive refurbishment of the track and field facilities made possible by Test Valley Borough Council.
The meeting, sponsored by Ashwells Estate Agents, attracted a record 281 entries with more than 50 competing from Andover AC, and for the first time ever athletes from Wales.
Morning events were hampered by high winds and rain, giving way to an afternoon of clear skies and sunshine-much to the delight of those in attendance. As expected, this highly regarded fixture produced some noteworthy performances from athletes across all age groups.
The youngest competitors came in the U9B age group where Jago Evision took second in the long jump (2.70m), after a sterling effort in the 70m time trial (11:64s).
The U9G were on form, with Ines Prodger coming second in the 70m time trial (12:0s) and more medals came in the long lump, where Erin Pinchbeck won with 3.15m.
In the U11G’s Victoria Goldsmith won her 80m time trial in a breathtaking photo finish (12:1s) and the U11Bs displayed prolific form in their 80m time trials with Kai Henderson second and Will McDermott third.
Henderson went on to take third in the 600m time trial (1:58s), narrowly beaten by a great performance from Taylor Anstie who won in 1.55s and set a new club record. Not to be outdone, McDermott was in fine form in the long lump taking third with 3.17m.
Some tough battles took place in the U13s where Tillie McClutchie won her 70m hurdles time trial to qualify for the 100m final (14:80s), improving on her time in the final (14:68s), though just outside a medal position.
Ever improving Sarah Brett faced tough competition in her 70m hurdles time trials, an impressive 12:70 securing sixth place among a very fast field.
Brett went on to win her 800m time trial taking second overall and buoyed by her track success, was fired up for the long jump, clinching second.
McClutchie was close on Brett’s heels, filling fourth place with a jump of 3.69m. Amelia Cairns qualified for the 200m final finishing sixth and talented Andover athlete Kezia Poole gave a strong performance in the 1500m final, securing third in 6:09.
The star of the U13 age group was James McDermott, coming second in his heat to qualify for the 100m final where he was sixth in 14:06. McDermott went on to win his 200m heat which he bettered in the final with fifth place.
The highly-talented U15 girls performed exceptionally well in the 100m heats where Jasmine McClutchie (13:03s), and national long jump champion Holly Mills (12:84) won their respective heats.
Darcie Henderson qualified for the final which was a close run race with Mills taking second, Henderson third and McClutchie fourth.
The formidable talents of Mills, Henderson, and McClutchie lined up again in the 200m, winning their heats comfortably.
With Mills sitting out the final Henderson won with McClutchie second and in the 1500m Emma Livingstone narrowly missed first place, in 5:24.
In the U15 boys Adam Jones in the 1500m and Tom Hewson in the javelin were just outside medal positions.
Emerging talents Sam Sears and Ross Livingstone both qualified for the final of the U17 200m where Livingstone was third.
He then took the honours in the 800m final with a winning time of 2:07 closely followed by fellow club athlete Callum Duff in third (2:15). Archie McKellar was less than a second behind Duff in fourth.
Aspiring multi-eventer Kieran Nicholls made a valiant effort in the field taking fourth in the discus (32.35m) against some of the most accomplished throwers in the region.
There was good club competition in the U20W 100m where the talented Annie Brooks ran 12:71 to take second with senior guest Hayley Coney third.
Multi-eventer Brooks went on to take second in the long lump with 4.89m. New club member Amy Jaramazovic also ran well in the 200m final, coming third (26:65s).
Andover AC are sponsered by Alton Sports.
More pictures in Friday's Advertiser