News reports - March 2020

29th March 2020: Final results for the Mid Lancs XC League, 2019/20

Team managers have been issued with the final Mid Lancs XC League results for the season, after necessary tie-break rules applied.

So the individual medallists are confirmed as follows:

Monty Barr, Under 13 Boy gold medallist

David Hamilton, Vet 40 Men silver medallist

David Hamilton, Vet 50 Men gold medallist

Rob Johnson, Vet 60 Men bronze medallist.

In the team awards:

V40 Men Div 1, silver medallists

Vet 50 Men, gold medallists.

In other team news, our Senior Women and Senior Men are confirmed relegated from Div'n 1 for the 2020/21 season.

The Mid Lancs Awards evening on 24th April has been cancelled. Arrangements for getting awards to runners has yet to be announced by the League.

25th March 2020: England Athletics membership update

In the context of the coronavirus epidemic, England Athletes further advises that:

 

1. Timings: The deadline for Athlete Registrations for 2020-2021 will be extended from 30th June until 31st August 2020. We would hope that those clubs that expected and prepared to pay registration fees during April will continue to do so as planned but we also hope that this provides some clubs with flexibility to help manage cash flow and defer payments until activity commences. 

2. Athlete fee reduction: The individual EA Athlete Registration fee will be fixed at £15 for 2020-2021 effective from 1 April 2020 instead of being set at £16 as previously communicated to all clubs.

3. Athlete Eligibility: In the event of a licensed competition taking place during the summer (prior to 31 August) all athletes who were registered during 2019/2020 will be eligible for competition up until 31st August. Competition checker facilities will be amended to reflect this decision. Any new athletes entering competition will need to be registered prior to the date of the event. 

The following aspects of the 2020-2021 membership and affiliation process remain unchanged:

4. Payment Gateway: The club affiliation & athlete registration year will open as usual on 1 April. This allows clubs to operate as normal if they wish and ensures some income will be generated in Q1. The individual Club & Member Body Affiliation fee of £150 will remain and clubs are asked to pay by 30 April.

Further consultation with the sport will take place in the latter part of the summer months as we look ahead to setting the affiliation and athlete registration fees effective from 1 April 2021 onwards.

24th March 2020: Athletics in England suspended to end May '20

England Athletcs updates their statement on the coronavirus:

  1. Extending the suspension of all athletics activity in England to the 31 May. [Initially this had been agreed to the end of April]. This suspension includes all organised athletics activity in the UK, including all competitions, formal club activities, running groups, and all Education activity (coach, official, teacher).
  2. Strengthening our position on coaching activity - We are now mandating that all physical coaching ceases, and only be conducted via virtual means during this period. Bringing groups of people together to train, however small, can no longer be permitted under the strict ‘Stay at home’ measures implemented by the UK Government.
17th March 2020: Coronavirus - Statement by England Athletics

Coronavirus Statement: last updated 17 March at 9am

The UK government has advised that everyone in the UK should now avoid “non-essential” travel and contact with others to fight coronavirus.  Whilst it has not issued any ban on public gatherings of any size either indoors or outdoors at this stage, the advice is to avoid non-essential contact with others, including going to sporting events, pubs, clubs, theatres and social venues.

As a result, England Athletics advises that all face-to-face activity such as club training sessions, events, competitions, club committee and face-to-face meetings, athlete camps, running groups and social events should be suspended until at least the end of April.

The decision has been taken in the interests of athletes, runners, officials, coaches, volunteers, supporters and the wider athletics and running communities. This decision is also in alignment with actions taken by the home country athletics federations in Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland and is similar to action taken by other sports.

Where possible, athletes and runners at all levels are encouraged to maintain their own personal fitness and keep active during this time, while following government guidelines about safe distance and safe exercise environments.

England Athletics will continue to review and monitor government advice and will provide detailed updates on the impact to our sport in the coming weeks. We appreciate that the current situation will undoubtedly place our member clubs in a difficult situation and we are working with UKA and the other Home Country Athletics Federations on the best way to help alleviate the situation and will update you as plans evolve.

Social distancing and advice

Social distancing measures (as defined by Public Health England as spending more than 15 minutes and within a 2-metre distance talking to someone) are now advised not only if we test positive or have symptoms, but in day to day life.  As well as current travel advice, the current UK government is advising anyone with a “new, continuous” cough or high temperature and those they live with need to self-isolate for 14 days.

At Risk groups

The latest advice from the government’s chief medical adviser is that those over 70 currently do not need to be self-isolating. However, in the coming days, every Briton over the age of 70 and those in at-risk groups over the age of 70 will be advised to be “largely shielded from social contact” for 12 weeks to help protect themselves. Those with underlying medical issues such as high blood pressure, lung complaints and weakened or compromised immune systems are more likely to develop serious illness as a result of the disease.

Anyone with a higher risk from viruses such as cold or flu should take sensible steps to reduce the risk of picking up infections. Click here for NHS advice on infection control – it is summarized below:

  • wash your hands with soap and water often – do this for at least 20 seconds
  • always wash your hands when you get home or into work
  • use hand sanitiser gel if soap and water are not available
  • cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your sleeve (not your hands) when you cough or sneeze
  • put used tissues in the bin immediately and wash your hands afterwards
  • avoid close contact with people who have symptoms of coronavirus
  • use phone, online services, or apps to contact your GP surgery or other NHS services

Click here for the government’s advice if you have symptoms

Courses

All qualification and development courses have been postponed.  Everyone who has booked onto a course will be sent an email asap informing them of the postponement and will be able to defer their booking.

Where we can, we will attempt to continue with education via online methods (e.g. webinar, Skype etc). However, this may not be practically possible for all activities. Where not, the aim will be to re-schedule courses to a later date wherever feasible.

Qualifying races

We are currently undergoing a contingency planning process for qualifying races and will keep everyone updated as soon as possible.

Road Races

We will be working with our partner runbritain to coordinate a communication detailing appropriate advice and guidance to road race organisers in the immediate future.

Competitions

No emergency services will attend large gatherings so it is unavoidable that competitions will now be suspended until at least the end of April.  We are in contact with event organisers to find suitable alternative dates within the competition calendar and our cancellations page link is kept up to date: www.englandathletics.org/cancellations

14th / 15th March 2020: Club records at indoor Combined Events

 

This weekend was the England Athletics u15/u17 Indoor Combined Events Championships in Sheffield, an event normally attended by a number of Southport Waterloo athletes but the popularity of this event saw a number miss out on a space as entries were closed early. 

Amber Hughes and Sam Coupland were our representatives.  Amber in the u15 girls 5 event Pentathlon on Sunday, Sam in the u17 men's 7 event Heptathon held over both days. 

This meeting also coincides with the Tom Pink relays for younger athletes that Southport Waterloo were taking a team to but the current coronavirus challenge saw that event cancelled. Indeed with so many travelling to Sheffield from around the UK the relevant website wes being checked all day Friday to establish if the championships were going ahead. 

On Saturday the u17 women competed in a Pentathlon and it was day 1 of the u17 men's Heptathlon, 60m, Long Jump, Shot and High Jump.  Sam has a good day with 60m in 7.70s, Long Jump of 6.28m, Shot 9.52m and High Jump in 1.84m - personal bests for 60m and Shot.  

Overnight Sam was in 6th place with 2416 points.  With only two age groups the atmosphere was a little more subdued than usual, watching athletes thank officials without handshakes was also quite awkward. 

 

Sunday, the u15 boys' and girls' pentathlons and day two of the u17 men's Heptathlon.  The indoor pentathlon is 60m hurdles, Long Jump, Shot, High Jump and 800m, a very long day for Amber ahead.  She started with 9.43s (PB) in the hurdles, 4.80m (PB) in the Long Jump, 9.75m in the shot, 1.45m in the High Jump and 2:38.50 for the 800m.  8th place overall of the 41 competitors, a points total of 2,997, improving Amber’s own club record and a northern bronze medal, recorded on the club's roll of honour.

It was 7:30pm before Amber finished her day. 

Sam’s second day consisted of the 60m hurdles, Pole Vault and 1000m.   60m hurdles in 9.36s a personal best but lost him ground on many of his peers.  The Pole Vault was a much more positive event, eventually clearing 3.60m with the support of some of his fellow competitors giving him advice and lending him poles.  This is also an improved club record. Finally, the 1,000m, where Sam started well but was frustrated with 3:10.75.  

A points total of 4156pts is also an improved club record.  But no medals this time, 11th overall and 4th Northern. As defending Northern Champion it was a difficult drive home.

Well done to the England Champion. The next combined events meeting in the calendar is the Lancashire County and Schools' Open meeting at Hyndburn on 4th/5th April, subject to permit and us all using enough hand sanitiser... 

Results: 

14th March 2020: English Schools XC comes to Liverpool

Sefton Park in Liverpool was the venue for this year's New Balance English Schools' Cross Country Championships, last held here in 2008, Liverpool's 'Capital of Culture' year. The course was the same as that used for the Autumn Cross Challenge - and just as muddy if not more so! With 44 English county schools teams, 8 selected runners in each of the Jnr Girls, Jnr Boys, Inter Girls, Inter Boys, Snr Girls and Snr Boys it is a major event in the athletics calender and one of the few sporting events nationally not falling victim to the coronavirus restrictions. With fields of over 300 runners charging away from the Start line, it is also a major spectacle - and highly competitive, with exhausted runners giving their all as they crossed the Finish line.

The first 8 in each race were to be taken straight from the finish to selectors in the International tent, an honour any young runner would cherish. That didn't happen today, however, as next week's home countries International in Falkirk, Scotland, has had to be cancelled.

Southport Waterloo had three girls competing for Merseyside Schools. In the first race, for Inter Girls, Olivia Logan and Lucy Milling were running and neither seemed at all tired after their hard run at Loughborough the Saturday before. Olivia couldn't quite stay with the leaders but gave everything as she approaching the line getting the better of at least two runners in front and closing on another two. She finished 12th of 335 girls in 12:59 for the 3.8 kms, 2nd Merseyside counter. Lucy was 179th in 14:33 and 5th Merseyside counter, the team finishing 12th, Merseyside 2nd highest team finish position of the day.

Emily Dean was the other club interest, running in the Junior Girls' race, as a 1st year Jnr Girl. She finished 234th in 12:54 for the 3 km course, 5th Merseyside team counter.

Full results

7th March 2020: 6 club runners represent Merseyside at the Inter Counties cross country

The 2020 CAU Inter Counties Cross Country Championships returned to the Prestwold Hall estate in Loughborough on Saturday with the Merseyside teams including 6 Southport Waterloo runners. That's one more than last year and it was significant to have three of our young women in the Under 17 Women's race. Conditions at Loughborough were tough, even for a national championships.

Emily Dean had a great run in the Under 13 Girls' race. She finished 121st of 306 in 16:04 for 3.4 kms. She was 3rd counter of the 8-strong Merseyside team that finished 23rd of 40 complete teams.

An outstanding Olivia Logan led the Merseyside Under 17 Women's team home in their race over 5.3 kms. Olivia was an impressive 33rd of 272 in 22:59. Lucy Milling was Merseyside's 4th counter, 134th overall in 25:17, and Lilly-Ann Grayson was 213th in 27:22. The Merseyside team were 11th of 39 complete teams. Freya Walsh was a named reserve for Merseyside.

Monty Barr featured in the Under 13 Boys' race where he finished an impressive 48th of 293, 2nd Merseyside counter, in 14:19 for the 3.4 kms. The Merseyside team were 10th of 40 teams.

Andrew Kershaw was our only club rep in the Senior Men's race, 5th Merseyside counter, 174th of 294 overall, in 44:55 for the 11.2 kms.

The quality of our runners shines through in these results.

The cross country season is drawing to a close but we have Masters and English Schools next weekend and the Club-run Sefton Yr 5/6 cross country champs are on Wednesday 18th March on Birkdale Common.

Full results from Loughborough

A point for our Senior Women to ponder is that this event, like some internationall Championship races, had the Senior Women running the same distance as the Senior Men; 11.2 kms. There is already equality on the Road. How far it extends into cross country has yet to be worked through but I believe many - possibly most - local Senior Women cross country runners would prefer the shorter distance run in county championships.

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