Zialor continues to leap forward

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Laura Zialor has been smashing through her own MMKAC club records of late, and this weekend was no exception as she broke her triple jump PB.

By virtue of her triple jump performance at her International debut at Cardiff a few weeks ago, Laura was invited to compete in the UK senior championships at Sheffield.

On her second attempt she leapt 12m37 to add one centimetre to her club record and into 4th position. And then on her sixth and final jump a huge leap of 12m57, a startling 20cm improvement and still holding 4th position. This distance places Laura 18th in the UK senior all-time rankings.

Another 4th place went to Rachel Gibbens in the pole vault. After clearing 4.00m, a height only cleared by three others, she had two failures at 4.10m and then one narrow failure at the eventual winning height of 4.20m. This meant she missed the bronze medal on count-back. Both performances by these ladies auger well for MMKAC when the team compete in the UK Women’s league this summer.

Chris Clarke was on for a medal in the 200m. He won his heat in 21.04 and then his semi-final in 20.96 only to be disqualified for stepping outside his lane.

On the roads there were half-marathon personal bests set by Gary Blaber, 22nd at Coventry with a time of 77.07(4212 finishers) and by Geoff New at Cambridge with 91.31, 448th from a field of over 5000 runners.

>> The annual English “National” Cross-Country Championships is the highlight of the year for club teams. This year the event was held at Castle Donington, Leicestershire where the course was a good mix of grassland and challenging hills. Some 1800 runners from clubs as far apart as Penzance, Brighton, Cumbria and Newcastle set out in the 12km men’s race and by the end of the first of the three laps Steve Tuttle was inside the top 100. He achieved a very creditable finishing position of 71st to become only the third local athlete to make the top 100.

Liam Smith made his debut in this prestigious race, 264th with the reliable Chris Hearn, 329th. The scoring six-man team was completed by Ross Threlfall (514th), Mark Palser (549th) and Steve Herring (555th). This gave them 28th position from 125 teams that closed in, their best for five years when they placed a best-ever 24th. Jack Comerford completed the club squad in 1367th place.

The ladies were rather depleted and saw just two in action. However Gemma Childs in her first senior “National” placed 161st from a field of well over 700, the 14th best in the MMKAC all-time rankings whilst Natasha Baker made a very satisfactory debut, finishing 206th

With most of the clubs’ youngsters resting prior to the fortcoming English Schools Cross-Country Championships, there were just two under 15 girls competing, In their 4km race Libby Herdman-Smith placed 220th and Rosie Merrin 318th.