Clarke joins ranks for world athletics elite

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A THIRD city athlete has joined the elite ranks of the Diamond League this week as Chris Clarke contested the 400m in Brussels.

Finishing 8th in 46.65s, Chris was in great company with the Borlee brothers of Belgium taking the honours in front of the home crowd with Jonathan finishing in a season’s best of 44.78s and Kevin 44.97s, and the somewhat controversial ‘blade runner’ Oscar Pistorius from South Africa taking 3rd in 45.46s.

After impressing on the global stage at the World Championships in South Korea earlier this month, Clarke’s inclusion in the Diamond League is another significant step forward for the 21-year-old as he joins long-jumper Greg Rutherford and sprinter Craig Pickering to fly the flag for Milton Keynes.

A little closer to home, Milton Keynes AC’s men’s team have discovered that it’s tough at the top. Having finished 2nd in the Southern Athletics League, they qualified for the British League promotion match, but struggled from the outset and podium places were a scarce commodity for the team,

This was not helped by multi-eventer Will Lambourne having to return home with a fever leaving the team short in some of the more technical events. However, there were some bright lights on a dull day – in particular the javelin with a double win thanks to Mervin Luckwell with one of his best throws of the season he heaved his javelin out to 80.60m, and Michael Cox with his 53.90m throw.

There was another 1st in the B hammer for Sam Ridgway throwing 48.74m, while in the A string Mark Roberson threw 48.86m for 3rd and Sam grabbed another 3rd in the B discus with his 29.78m effort. There was also a great 2nd place by Chuko Crib in the triple jump as he cleared 13.84m.

There was also a 2nd place in the 800m for Sam Deathe as he clocked 1m 56.4s and Chris Hearn grabbed 4th spot in the B event in 2m 00,2s and Chris added another 4th in the 3000m steeplechase taking 10m 05.8s.

Sam was also 4th in the 1500m recording 4m 07,4s and in the B event it was 3rd for 3rd Chad Lambert in 4m 16.8s. A good 3rd place came in the 400m with Ben Sturgess running 50.7s and the 4x400m relay team – consisting of Ben Sturgess, Chris Hearn, Tom Comerford and Sam Deathe – finished in 3m 28.1s to take 4th place,

Unfortunately the team will have to wait for another year for a shot at the big league.