Wimborne Athletic Club

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Ellie, Lucy and Ronnie are South West Champions – 19 July 2015

Ian Kennedy reports from SW Inter-County Champs at Exeter

With all our South West League meetings taking place at Exeter Arena this summer this venue has become a very familiar place. This time around we were greeted with better weather than what we’ve become accustomed to there recently.  Some 20 Wimborne athletes took part.

Ben Butcher was one of our busiest athletes competing in three events – 75m hurdles, high jump and long jump.  He came second in his 75m hurdles heat, but just outside the medals 4th overall. He claimed two 5th places in long jump and high jump. He was headed by his team mate Eddie May in the high jump who claimed 4th.

The under-13 boys’ 1500m race included two WAC runners. The fastest of these was Max Meadwell who found himself just outside the medal positions in 4th place. Jack Moss-Willcox was gaining some valuable experience, and he finished 8th.

In the under-15 girls age-group Caitlin Rogers doubled up in the 300m and 800m. She claimed 7th place in both of these. Abbie White is following in her older sister’s footstep and threw the hammer in excess of 27m, claiming a new PB, for 5th place. Another outstanding performance in this age-group came from Anna Kelliher. She bagged a new PB in the 1500m, it was by the incredible margin of 24 seconds! Anna’s new PB means that of our present U15Gs within the club, only Grace Copeland has run faster over 1500m. There was another spectacular performance in the 3000m. Hannah Slater’s first ever outing for us was in Exeter in May over the same distance, shortly after moving to Dorset from South Africa. Seven weeks later, and after great commitment to her training, she has improved her PB by a margin of 25 seconds. Hannah has a UK ranking now of 38th in the UK. Progress indeed.

We only had two under-15 boys competing, but every Wimborne performance in this age-group brought a medal. James Guyler has achieved so much in his rookie season (currently ranked 34th U15B for 100m, and 50th for 200m). Here he claimed a brace bronze medals, in closely fought races over both 100m and 200 metres. Michael Johnson is (for an under-15) a very experienced 3000m runner. When you’ve done the event as often as Michael has the gains are usual incremental. Not so here! Michael had a dream of reaching the England Championships at Bedford. It was looking a long shot, he went into this race with a PB of 10.11 and the qualifying time is 10 minutes dead. Michael found something extra special on the day and he made the qualifying time with a few seconds to spare. Michael is currently ranked 32nd in the UK for an U15B at 3000m.

In the under-17 age-group we had four women and two male competitors. The pick of these was Ellie White in the hammer, fresh on the back of her terrific performance at English Schools (she’s currently ranked 12th in the UK). Ellie is a South West England Champion having out-thrown the rest of the field by a considerable margin. However, Ellie was just one of our South West Champions in this age-group. Lucy Ballam is also a regional champion having won her 1500m race, also by a handsome margin. In the process she recorded a time just outside her existing PB. Pippa Hine ran in the 200m where she came third in her heat. Completing the line-up for the girls in this age-group was Caitlyn Hooper who came 6th in the triple jump.  In the field Joe Miles was having a great day, he cleared 1.80m in high jump (a new PB) and claimed a silver medal.  On the track Joey Kelliher came 8th in the 1500m. On this day he had been upstaged by his kid sister. Joey is a gentleman, he took it on the chin and the big hug he gave Anna after she’d stepped off the track following her fine performance tells you all you need to know about how supportive the Kellihers are of each other, and how much respect they have for each other’s achievements.

Sharon Hutchings was out there for a 400m in the U20W category. She already holds the club record for that age-group and she is knocking on the door of the overall club record. For the time being the old club record survives … but for how much longer? Sharon won a silver medal.

In the senior category we had the mentor/coach (Dave Pearson) and prodigy (Jack Snook) duking it out in the pole vault. On this occasion experience won out, with Dave taking silver and Jack bronze in the event. In order to beat Jack, Dave did have to find his best clearance for some 18 months.

Last, and by no means least, was Ronnie De Bique. Ronnie managed the biggest medal haul of any Wimborne athlete on the day. He is South West Champion in both 400m hurdles and over 200m.  Ronnie also bagged a silver medal in the 110m hurdles. Most of the WAC athletes represented Dorset, with Ronnie a notable exception – he is now based in Wiltshire. It’ll be great to have him on our side once we return to Exeter in the final South West League fixture come September.

All in all it was a pretty good day at Exeter, where we witnessed some fine performances from Wimborne athletes.










Heat 2 75m hurdles
2 – Ben Butcher – 14:32

Final 1500m
4 – Max Meadwell – 4:57.83
8 – Jack Moss-Willcox – 5:36.65

High Jump
4 – Eddie May – 1.34m
5 – Ben Butcher – 1.29m

Long jump
5 – Ben Butcher – 4.49m


5 – Abbie White – 27.77m

7 – Caitlin Rogers – 46.65

7 – Caitlin Rogers – 2:36.40

8 – Anna Kelliher – 5:06.18

4 – Hannah Slater – 11:11.82


3 –  James Guyler – 11.92

3 –  James Guyler – 24.10

3 – Michael Johnson – 9:57.37


3 – Pippa Hine – 26.70

1 – Lucy Ballam – 4:55.94

Triple jump
6 – Caitlyn Hooper – 10.01m

1 – Ellie White – 51.51m


High jump
2 – Joe Miles – 1.80m

7 – Joey Kelliher – 4:35.95


2 – Sharon Hutchings – 60.15


110m hurdles
2 – Ronnie De Bique – 16.65

400m hurdles
1 – Ronnie De Bique – 68.86

1 – Ronnie De Bique – 23.44

Pole vault
2 – Dave Pearson – 4.00m
3 – Jack Snook – 3.90



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