There were mixed fortunes for Sussex athletes at the start of the weekend with Charlie Grice having a cracking run in the Monaco Diamond League event despite finishing ninth in his 1500m on Friday evening and Amber Anning winning the Schools International 300m on Saturday but both Edan Cole and Joe Massimo suffered mishaps.
Grice (Brighton Phoenix) chopped more than one second off his previous best with a remarkable 3:33.60s which lifts him, on the British Top Ten All Time list, to tenth place. He also moves above club mate and former Olympic steeplechase bronze medallist Mark Rowland on the Sussex All Time list and now ranks second only to Steve Ovett’s 3:30.77s.
Despite such a fine effort Grice was not the first British runner to finish as Mo Farah, sharpening up for the long events that lie ahead, finished fifth in 3:27.74s.
At the Home Countries Schools International match at Ashford, Brighton & Hove’s Amber Anning continued her 22 month unbeaten run over 300 metres when she again romped away from the field clocking 38.84s. This run saw her a full second ahead of Surrey’s Alex Shaw, who she had beaten for the English Schools title last weekend. Anning secured a second gold, anchoring the England 4x300m home in front of the Scottish team.
The other Sussex athlete in action at Ashford was Amber’s Brighton & Hove club mate Edan Cole, but it was not such a good result for him.
Cole fell heavily when warming up and twisted his foot and although he gamely insisted on throwing he had his poorest result of the season. He nevertheless reached a more than useful 55.48m, just short of a National Schools standard, but well short of his usual 59/60m throws and finished in fourth place.
There was also misfortune for Crawley’s Surrey sprinter Joe Massimo. Running for the British team in the European Youth Championships in Georgia, Massimo pulled a hamstring in his heat of the 200 metres as they entered the straight but he bravely limped home in eighth place.
Sussex 10km Road Championship:
Neil Boniface from Horsham Joggers won the battle with his training companion Kevin Rojas (Brighton & Hove) in the Sussex 10km Road Running championships which was held in conjunction with the Brighton Phoenix Open event on the Brighton & Hove Seafront last Wednesday.
Boniface was squeezed into second place in the Open event by James Connor (Kent) who clocked 31:00s to the Horsham runner’s 31:09s.
Rojas (Brighton & Hove) who has been selected for his first international marathon in Toronto in October, finished third overall but second in the Sussex Championship in 31:25s while Matt Bradford (Lewes) took the bronze medal in 32:32s.
Rebecca Moore (Chichester) took the women’s title in 34:30s ahead of Liz Coomber (Lewes) 35:48s and Helen Buller (Worthing) who clocked 36:36s.
Haywards Heath won the Men’ team event with 28 points to Brighton & Hove 32 and Lewes, also on 32 while Lewes took the Women’s team event with 15 points to Arena 80’s 21 and Hailsham’s 43.