Biggleswade secure last gasp victory on final day

Biggleswade AC women's 4x400 relay team led home by Katie Miles. Picture: Darren Janssen. PNL-170823-141300002
Biggleswade AC women's 4x400 relay team led home by Katie Miles. Picture: Darren Janssen. PNL-170823-141300002

Biggleswade Athletic Club took a brilliant victory on a dramatic final day of Southern Athletics League action.

With the scores tight among the top teams in attendance at the fixture in Peterborough, it took the closing relays to decide the outcome.

Alex Ingham of Biggleswade AC in the Southern Area League javelin. Picture: Darren Janssen. PNL-170823-141225002

Alex Ingham of Biggleswade AC in the Southern Area League javelin. Picture: Darren Janssen. PNL-170823-141225002

It was an outstanding performance against high-quality opposition in the form of Woodford Green With Essex Ladies, the former British Athletics League champions who have boasted a host of internationals over the years including Sally Gunnell, Tiffany Porter and Jeanette Kwakye.

Yet they were undone by both difficult conditions and a litany of BAC victories.

Club coach Jamie Webster said: “The day started off slowly but very quickly heated up and we found ourselves in second place after six events.”

Helping the cause enormously were wins for Sarah Ridley (13.1sec) and Katie Miles (13.4) in the 100m A and B races respectively. Morgan Webster doubled up to take both the 200m (23.4) and 400m (51.8), while Tristan Rayner won the 400m B race (55.5).

Darren Janssen of Biggleswade in the Southern Area League shot put. PNL-170823-141237002

Darren Janssen of Biggleswade in the Southern Area League shot put. PNL-170823-141237002

Elaine Livera emerged up top in the 3000m (10:57.5) and Hannah Broom won the 800m B race (2:41.8). Daniel Steel (20.7) and Joshua Watson (27.1) took the honours in the A and B 110m hurdles, and Watson added victory in the 400m hurdles B race for good measure, in 66.4sec.

Not to be outdone, Steel won the long jump and triple jump with season’s best performances of 5.97m and 12.36m, and added the win in the high jump B string with 1.55m, while Darren Janssen topped the B standings of the pole vault (2.50m).

In the B-string of the triple jump, Alex Ingram won with 11.68m, and the men mopped up in the javelin too thanks to Alex Ingham’s 48.44m in the A string and Nathan Dodds’ 44.05 – making him the second-best thrower on the day and comfortably good enough to take B-string honours.

Backing up brilliantly were a whole host of top three placings from Jamie Hall, Alice Middleton, Jakub Grabowski, Kathryn Juty, Sandra Ingham, Marcus Davey, Paul Davies and both 4x100m teams.

Elaine Livera of Biggleswade AC in Southern Area League action. Picture: Darren Janssen. PNL-170823-141248002

Elaine Livera of Biggleswade AC in Southern Area League action. Picture: Darren Janssen. PNL-170823-141248002

Special mention must go to the two 4x400m quartets however, as Webster notes: “As the day went on we stayed in second until the field results went in and we leapfrogged Woodford into first.

“The women’s 4x400m team ran out of their skins to finish first by five metres and set up that the men’s team needed to finish ahead of Woodford.

“It went to the last leg. Peterborough were 80 metres ahead and Woodford and Biggleswade were level. As the race went on Biggleswade went ahead and came home in second. But most importantly we finished ahead of Woodford and it left us four points clear at the end of the day.”​

The win wrapped up a great season in the league which has seen dozens of personal bests and a string of club records.

Southern Area League high jump. Picture: Darren Janssen, PNL-170823-141212002

Southern Area League high jump. Picture: Darren Janssen, PNL-170823-141212002