Bicester AC Awards Evening

There was an excellent turnout for the annual Bicester Athletic Club Summer awards evening presentation held last Friday at the Highfield Club.  It was a special evening as not only were awards given out to those young athletes who excelled in their age groups, but a special presentation was made to the club’s oldest competing athlete, Dave Kuester  Hosted by club Chairman Steve Flynn, the evening also included a quiz, raffle and ended with a disco.

The winner of the under 13 girl’s track athlete of the year award produced some truly exceptional performances not only on the track but in the jumping events as well.  Throughout the Summer, Millie Couzens set an incredible six new club records from events as diverse as the high jump, the 70 metre hurdles and 1500 metres.  In addition she achieved national graded performances in 7 events, which included a grade 1 performance in the long jump (4.91metres) and a grade 2 in the high jump (1.40m).  She headed the Oxfordshire county rankings in the long jump and 800 metres (2mins 32.1 secs).  In just one attempt at the 1500 metres (5mins 18.33secs), she ran one of the fastest ever times by a Bicester female athlete of any age at that distance.  Her season was capped by her magnificent long jump performance in Oxfordshire Young Athletes League which placed her 6th in the national rankings for her age group.

Amber Parker made excellent progress during the Summer, which culminated in her selection for the County.  She achieved a national grade 2 standard in the under 13 girl’s shot putt (7.88m) which also broke the old club record mark.  She followed this up with national graded performances in the javelin (20.13m) and discus (15.39m) which were enough to earn her the club’s under 13 girl’s field athlete of the year.

Ben West made excellent progress in the middle distances in the early part of the Summer which included a triple first in the 400, 800 and 1500 metres at one of the early track fixtures.  He also took lumps of seconds out of his previous bests, finishing as the 2nd ranked athlete in the County over 800 metres, as well as fitting in a 4 mile road race during the Summer where he finished 10th in a field of 300 runners competing against older runners.  In recognition of these performances the club awarded Ben under 17 male club athlete of the year.

During the Summer Jess Cherry concluded her time with the club, with new club records in the hammer throw (22.45m) and shot putt (10.50 metres), which was a national grade 2 effort.  These efforts were rewarded with the girl’s under 17/20 field athlete of the year and Emily Benfield was awarded the equivalent track athlete of the year.

There were some very good performances amongst the younger age groups with individual awards earned in the Heart of England League by Josh Parker, Jacob Croft, Charlotte Kavanagh, Isla Bohannon, Josephine Parker and Imogen Cox.  Josh Parker won the under 11 boy track athlete of the year with a national grade 4 and new club record mark of 10.7secs in the 75 metres.  Jacob Croft threw 34.34m in the howler for and was named under 11 boy field athlete of the year and Timothy Jones’s efforts were rewarded with the under 11 boy club athlete of the year.

Isla Bohannon also achieved a grade 4 time in the girl’s 75 metres, which was also a new club record, which won her the girl’s under 11 track award.  The equivalent field award was won by Charlotte Kavanagh with the under 11 girl’s club award going to Imogen Cox.  The under 9’s were also recognised with Matthew Barker awarded under 9 boy’s club athlete of the year and Kirsten Senior taking the equivalent girl’s award.

The club competes in three athletic leagues during the Summer and enjoyed mixed success.  A trophy presentation was made on the night to the under 13 and under 15 boy’s teams who won their respective age competitions in the Oxfordshire Young Athletes League.  Jamil Welham made great strides in the 300 metres, recording a new club record and grade 3 time of 39.9secs as well as a graded effort in the 200 metres (25.5secs) which earned him under 15 boy’s track performer of the year.  Oscar Honour performed consistently in the throwing events during the Summer throwing an excellent grade 4 distance of 34.15m in the javelin which earned him the under 15 boy’s club field performer of the year.

In the under 13 boy’s events, Samuel Rayson won the track performer award with a grade 3 performance of 13.93secs in the 75m hurdles which was 3rd best in the County rankings.  4th in the County high jump rankings was Ben Groves who took the under 13 boy’s field performer of the year award with a grade 4 jump of 1.33m.

Molly Acton continued to perform at a high level in the middle distances with grade 4 performances in the 800 metres (2mins 26.69secs) and 300 metres (45.4secs) to earn the award of under 15 girl’s track performer of the year.  The equivalent field performer was won by Holly Hunter wh,o set two new club records in the javelin (25.22m) and hammer (17.86m).

Other winners in the club athlete of the year awards were as follows:

Under 13 Girl’s           Amelia Cox

Under 13 Boy’s          Callum Hewett

Under 15 Girl’s           Amy Gould

Under 15 Boy’s          Samuel Worfolk

Under 20 Men’s          Tom Gould

And the Bradley Shield, awarded to an individual who has made an outstanding contribution to the club behind the scenes, went to Press Officer, Nick Dolden.