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The bank holiday weekend was an emotional roller coaster for BUAC full of hugs, tears and the ever present BUAC spirit. There was certainly a lot going on, with athletes both on the field and on the track keeping us busy.

Day 1

Kicking off the wet and cold weekend on Bedford we had the boys 1500m heats, with men’s cross captain Jethro McGraw, James Vincent and Grant Anderson through as fastest losers to Sunday’s semi-finals. Unfortunately Tom Dodd had to run his heat with a heavy cold and did not qualify, but we look forward to much more on his comeback this season! Straight afterwards all three girls qualified for the 1500m semi-finals, with Sabrina Sinha, Sarah Chapman and Kate Seary all looking dangerously strong. The former two easily won their heats, Sarah admitting she, “felt like a legend” as she jogged across the finish line with seconds to spare. No wonder she is known as Sarah Ladman.

In the women’s hammer we had Poppy Bean qualifying for the final in 45.67m, with Grace Adeleye just missing out on the final with a fine PB of 42m. Livvy Connor competed in the women’s triple jump, just missing out of the final with 11.13m. She’s had a BUAC career of which she can be proud!

Next up we had the 100m heats, with fresher Tom Kennedy having a fine run in 11.28 which wasn’t quite enough to get him through to the next round, and Phil Bowden unfortunately having to pull up with an injury. Lots more to come for these two! Then we had Yvette Westwood qualifying for the semi-finals in a stunning 12.23, with the hero of the weekend Captain Ashleigh getting a PB of 12.77. Great running girls!

Star of the day was Ellie Jamieson in the women’s javelin final, coming away with 6thplace in 42.24m. Great job Ellie! Dan Hague also competed in a final, coming 26thin the men’s discus throwing 19.07m. Meanwhile in the high jump Jamie Anderson qualified for the final in 1.89m, with James Worman just missing a spot in 1.79m. In the women’s long jump Alina Bohm jumped 5.20m, Alice Linaker jumped 4.98m and Hannah Jones jumped 4.81m, unfortunately all missing final spots but nevertheless great performances from three freshers.

Next we had Alastair Phelan running 65.22 and Emma Clarke running 72.08 in the men and women’s 400m Hurdles heats respectively, BUAC debutant runs with which they can be well pleased.

In the 800m heats we had Issy Boffey running a blazing 2:23 to win her 800m heat, but thankfully this didn’t seem to fatigue her too much for her semi-final the next day. Unfortunately team mate Emily Thompson had to pull up with an injury, something which broke the hearts of all watching, but we’re so excited to see this up and coming talent come back even stronger than she was as a fresher. On the boys side, Patrick Taylor won his heat on a storming comeback run, with teammate Josh Allen also winning his heat. Joe Tuffin was also though to the next round.

Sergio Argul and Charlie Davis did @chasingfromtheGunn proud with both boys making their way safely to the 3000m Steeplechase final.

Meanwhile in the men’s 400m all three BUACers qualified for the semi-final, Jack Hocking running 50.2, Freddie Owsley 50.13 and Rory Keen 50.92. In the women’s 400m Harriet Cooper won her heat in 57.65, with Taiwo Eyiowuawi also sneaking into the semi-final in 60.7.

Day 2

Semi-finals day was another busy and successful day for BUAC. Poppy Bean is on a stormer at the moment, and threw a massive 46m to come 11thin the hammer final. Meanwhile finals spots were earned by Issy Boffey in the womens 800m, Jack Hocking in the mens 400m, all three of the 1500m women (as is becoming BUAC tradition), Jake Porter in the men’s 110m hurdles, Simone Mcken in the women’s discus, Jake Burkey in the mens long jump and Laura Zialor in the women’s high jump.

All four of the relay teams qualified for the final on Monday, one of only two universities to do so, which shows the depth of talent in BUAC power events. This certainly built up some excitement for the finals the next day.

All 3 competitors in the 200m’s PB’d, with Alice Odunaiya running 25.4 to qualify for the final, Mark Cottam running 22.2 to qualify for the final, and Lauren Butler running 25.88 to just miss out on a final spot. Meanwhile Yvette Westwood ran 12.31 in her 100m semi-final to just miss out on a finals spot.

On the boys endurance side the 1500m boys ran bravely, with Jethro missing a 1500m final place by one spot, as with Josh Allen in the 800m. Patrick Taylor and Joseph Tuffin both missed out on final spots in the 800m, as did Grant Anderson and James Vincent in the 1500m. Well done to all these boys and we look forward to seeing the strength of the boy’s endurance side coming through over the next few years.

Despite missing out on final spots, there were many other fine performances to be celebrated. In the men’s 400m Freddie Owsley ran 49 and Rory Keen ran 50.3, while Harriet Cooper ran 58.4 and Taiwo Eyiowuawi ran 59.82. Alex Parkinson PB’d in the 110m hurdles with 15.20. Alina Bohm and Alice Linaker ran 15.78 and 15.8 in the 100m hurdles respectively. Grace Adelede threw 26.65m in the discus. On the jump scenes, Jamie Worman jumped 5.93m and Danny Lamb 6.92m in the long jump, while Alice Linaker jumped 1.46m in the high jump. In the men’s javelin Daniel Hague threw 40.48 and Alex Robinson threw 42.51m. Well done all!


A very exciting day! Overall BUAC had an outstanding six medals, three 4thplaces, eleven top 8 performances and nineteen finalists. As a team, we came an impressive 4thoverall with the women coming 3rdand the men coming 10th.

Issy Boffey brought home our first gold medal in an impressive front running of the 800m final. We are excited to see the progression of this extremely talented and hard-working fresher.

Laura Zialor had a stellar performance in the high jump, gaining herself a well-deserved silver medal in 1.74m.

In one of the most exciting races of the day Amelia Quirk gained herself a bronze medal and a European U23 Qualifying standard, running 16:02 in her first 5000m on the track. Teammate Becky Straw came a well-deserved 12thin 16:43. It was great to see her getting back to racing after dealing with injury over the last few years.

The women’s 1500m was another nerve wracking race to watch, with Sabrina kicking over the last couple of hundred metres to earn herself a silver medal and in Luke’s words, bringing a “tear to everyone’s eyes” as we witnessed her perseverance during a difficult time over the last few years paying off. Having teammates Sarah Chapman in 6thand Kate Seary in 10thmade it even more special.

There is a lot to be excited about in the Steeplechase. In the women’s 2000m Steeplechase the red and gold of Birmingham dominated the start line, with a record breaking 4 entries from BUAC. Victoria Weir just missed out on a medal, coming 4thin her last BUCS for BUAC. Behind her in 5thwas fresher Maisie Grice with a very respectable run. Ella Shirley was 8thand Lily Higgins was 9th. In the men’s 3000m Steeplechase, Sergio Argul came 8th, bringing home the most BUCS points of all the endurance boys over the weekend. Teammate Charlie Davis came 12th, running down from his usual 10,000m distance.

The men’s 5000m A race saw future Cross Country Captain Dan Carpenter coming 18thin his first BUCS outdoors, and we are excited to see where he will take the men’s cross team next year (other than to every single Birmingham League fixture, of course). Meanwhile James Gormley unfortunately had to drop out due to injury.

There were more fine performances from the field eventers, with Ellie Jamieson coming 6thin the javelin, Jamie Anderson coming 7thin the high jump and Simone Mcken coming 8thin the discus. Great efforts from everyone!

The relays ended the day, with dramatic performances keeping everyone on the edge of their seats. The women’s 4x100m team comprising of Harriet, Livvy, Alice and Hannah came a very respectable 4th. Unfortunately the men’s 4x100m team were disqualified for being outside the exchange box.

BUAC ended BUCS outdoors 2019 on a high, with the women’s 4x400m relay team comprising of Harriet, Charlotte, Taiwo and Issy picking themselves up a silver medal in a high quality race. Finally, the men’s 4x400m relay team ran a stunning race, absolutely dominating the field with Mark, Freddie, Tor and Jack each running storming individual legs. They picked up the last available gold medal of the weekend, reminding all the other universities that the strength of the Lion is in the Pack #yamb

Overall it was a very enjoyable and successful weekend for BUAC. A massive thank to track captains Ashleigh Beavan and Mark Cottam for organising the weekend, as well as to all the coaches. Thanks must also go to future cross captain Louisa Whittingham who kept helped get everyone to the start line fresh with her massage all weekend.

BUCS 2019 is over, but summer with BUAC has only just begun! We have our next open track meet on Wednesday 5thJune, our visit from Ivy League Universities Yale and Harvard at the end of June, and the esteemed Birmingham Relays on Friday 2ndAugust. We hope to see you all then!

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