Veteran Ryston Runners men and women shine in league match

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The older members of Ryston Runners AC consolidated their positions at the head of both competitions in the Eastern Veterans’ AC Track & Field League with wins in both the men’s and women’s events in the second match of the 2015 series at Lynnsport.

New team managers Jeff and Helen Reed are doing a great job of motivating participants, both old hands and rookies, to ensure that the maximum number possible have qualified for the League Finals at Bedford in September.

New names on the men’s team included Che Plant, just old enough to take part, who won the sprint hurdles and was second in the 400m M35-49, and Tony Savage, who was part of a Ryston clean sweep of the 1500m races, with Matt Pyatt taking the M35-49 race with the best AG performance of the evening, Savage the M50, and Pete Johnson cleaning up decisively for the M60s.

This was just one of several clean sweeps of the evening for Ryston, others including the 1-mile walk (Paul Firmage/Martin Simmonds), and Triple Jump (Paul Harrison/David Lane).

New member Paul Oakes had wins in the M60 Discus and Javelin, with Martin Blackburn, Keith Morris, and Shaun Mann in support in the younger age groups.

Darren Easter, Mick Ennis and Nic Bensley were among other team members contributing to a close win ahead of Cambridge & Coleridge AC (Ryston 94, C&C 89, WNAC 63).

The women’s match was a more decisive victory for Ryston, who scored 103 points, ahead of C&C with 62, WNAC 28 and WSAC/St Eds 17.

Multi eventers Gaye Clarke and Tanya Daniels contributed a haul of points between them, and were part of a High Jump triple across all three age groups, that also saw Marlene Simmonds in action.

Despite being a year short of her 70th birthday, Simmonds also “counted down” across the events to record wins in the W35 Triple Jump and W50 Javelin, as well as a definitive Discus win in her own age group, by 12 metres. She was joined in the Triple Jump for a double win by Jo Isbill, competing in the W50 category.

Mel Watts, with her dream of completing the London Marathon behind her, ran much closer to her potential in the 100m and 400m, with Karen Wood and Linda Marshall contributing their usual solid performances in the older age groups, Karen winning her W50 100m.

Helen Melville, Jo Isbill and Jane Ashby covered the 1500m, while Liz Blakie and Sue Smith tidied up the walks, dropping just one possible point between them.

Team members hope at the next two fixtures to secure places in the finals at Bedford in September.