Woodford men’ s team finished 3rd in a very tight BAL Premiership fixture at Lee Valley on Saturday. Birchfield won again with 308 points, from SBH on 304, Woodford 277, TVH 276, Newham 274, Southampton 259.5, Sheffield 248.5 and Liverpool 209. Birchfield now head the table with 16 points, from Newham and Woodford each on 11, SBH, 10.5, TVH 8.5, Sheffield 8, Southampton 5 and Liverpool 2. In the end 3rd was a decent result for Woodford, again missing some top athletes, and also overcoming some problems on the day. As always there were many good performances no doubt aided by the rare decent weather, but none better than those from Jack Lawrie who recorded two personal bests and was close to his best ever in a third event. There was also a personal best for Phil Norman.
Several other Woodford athletes were in action over the weekend including at the Manchester City Games where Tiffany Porter and Cindy Ofili competed, at the BMC Grand Prix, also in Manchester, at the BIG Jumps and throws meet at Bedford and at the Newham sprints graded meeting.
Less than a week after Phil Norman had bettered Colin Moxsom's 1973 Club "domestic" best of 8m 46.13 secs, with his Loughborough win in 8m 42.89 secs, and where Adam Kirk-Smith had finished behind Phil with 8m46.26 secs, the record was broken again. This time it was Adam, who is coached by Woodford's Tomaz Plibersek,who bettered Phil's new mark with a fine 8m37.62 secs in a high class race in Ordegem, Belgium on Saturday evening, and in so doing he achieved one of his season's aims which was to achieve the Northern Ireland qualifying standard for next year's Brisbane Commonwealth Games. With the Woodford Club "domestic" best having moved little since Dave Chapman's 8m46.4 secs set in 1962, it has now been bettered twice in a week by different Woodford athletes, with every chance of further improvement as the season progresses. The absolute best by a Woodford athlete is 8m16.36 secs set by Australian Youcef Abdi when placing 6th in the Beijing Olympics, having previously won a Commonwealth Games bronze over 1500m at Manchester, when he was based in the UK under the guidance of Woodford's Bill Allison.
The BBC have reported Adam's latest run here.
Several Woodford athletes were on representative duty at Loughborough for the early season Loughborough International match, which features Loughborough University against teams from British Universities, England, Scotland, Wales and Great Britain U/20's. Performances were led by personal bests from Youcef Zatat, Jack Lawrie, Phil Norman and Adam Kirk-Smith. There were other good performances and also news from overseas.