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McCain Jumpsfest and Throwsfest

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Sophie Hitchon
Sophie Hitchon - hammer gold medallist

 

08 July 2011

For timetable and entry lists visit the Jumps Fest and Throws fest section

The McCain UKA Challenge – Jumpsfest and Throwsfest returns with a bang this weekend at the Barnet Copthall Stadium in London on July 9-10, with more than 300 of the country’s leading field event athletes set to do battle as they compete for a share in the £10,000 prize pot.

Recent UK record-holder Sophie Hitchon (coach: Derek Evely) is one of the headline acts. The 19-year-old has established herself as the country’s leading hammer thrower after smashing the UK record earlier this year with 69.43m. She will hope to give herself an early birthday present this weekend – she turns 20 on Monday – as she faces training partner Zoe Derham (Derek Evely) and European under-23 bronze medallist Sarah Holt (Robert Weir).

The men’s discus has been one of Britain’s strongest events this year and this weekend in Barnet three of the country’s 61-metre throwers will go head-to-head. Abdul Buhari (Mark Wiseman) will be looking to improve on the 63.58m PB he set last week, but Lawrence Okoye (John Hillier) and Chris Scott (Andrew Neal) will put up a strong challenge.

The women’s equivalent sees two-time Olympian Philippa Roles (Maggie Lynes) take on Britain’s best young discus throwers in Eden Francis (Glenys Morton) and Jade Nicholls (Andrew Neal), as the trio clash for the first time this year.

Of the four British men who have this year broken 71 metres in the hammer, three of them will lock horns in Barnet this weekend as Mark Dry (Derek Evely), Alex Smith (Shane Peacock) and Mike Floyd (Kevin Madden) are all entered.

After making a strong return from injury last weekend with 2.28m, Tom Parsons (Fayyaz Ahmed) will be looking to improve on his own UK-leading mark in the high jump. He faces training partner Robbie Grabarz (Fayyaz Ahmed), 2.31m man Samson Oni (Trevor Llewelyn) and the returning Ben Challenger. The entries for the women’s event are led by Steph Pywell (Graham Ravenscroft) and European Team Championships representative Emma Perkins.

Laura Whittingham (Esa Utriainen) last weekend came within five centimetres of breaking 60 metres in the javelin, so the Sale Harrier will have plenty of motivation to carry through to this weekend. Many of the country’s leading young athletes are also entered, including Freya Jones (William Bushnell), Tesni Ward (David Parker), Izzy Jeffs (Simon de Wilton) and English Schools champion Kike Oniwinde (Sam Harrison).

At the other end of the age spectrum, Road Bradstock (self-coached) goes in the men’s javelin as he looks to improve on his own world veteran bests. But Dan Pembroke (Kevin Pembroke) and Lee Doran (John Davies) should keep the 49-year-old on his toes.

Jade Nimmo (Darren Ritchie) and JJ Jegede (Peter Stanley) go in to the long jump events in the hope of not only winning but pulling off a PB, having both got close to their respective bests in recent weeks.

Sally Peake (Scott Simpson) is the in-form athlete in the women’s pole vault, having added 20cm to her best this year with a 4.30m PB. UK indoor champion Max Eaves (Alan Richardson) heads the men’s entries, but Nick Cruchley (Scott Simpson) could be the dark horse, after vaults of 5.40m and 5.42m in his past two competitions.

The three women to this year break 16 metres – Eden Francis (Glenys Morton), Rebecca Peake, and Rachel Wallader (Geoff Capes) – are entered in the shot, while Scott Rider (John Hillier) will look to inch nearer the 19-metre barrier in the men’s shot.

With her 13.77m, Nadia Williams (Peter Stanley) has been in PB form this year, but so too has the rapidly-rising Hannah Frankson (Larry Achike), and both are entered this weekend for the triple jump.

Nick Thomas (Guy Spencer) and Kola Adedoyin (Frank Attoh) are the only two men’s triple jump entrants to have broken 16 metres this year, but world youth champion Ben Williams (John Crotty) will be looking to join them.