Stratford AC boost Midland League promotion hopes

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Stratford AC’s winning 4x400m relay team of Jess Sheppard, Hannah Bexson, Edie Hutchinson and Issy Cain-Daley.

STRATFORD AC handed their Midland League promotion hopes a huge boost with victory in their third meeting of the season at Dudley last weekend.

The success sets Stratford up for promotion going into the final match on 7th August at Tipton.

Issy Cain-Daley in action at Dudley.
Issy Cain-Daley in action at Dudley.

With the top two going up, Stratford are level with Leicester Coritanian in second place.

The Stratford team were bolstered by debuts in the team at opposite ends of the age groups — under-17 Ollie Cresswell ran well in the 100m as well as excelling in his speciality event of the high jump.

Other newcomers from the under-17s were Taz Chape (first in the B javelin) and Edie Hutchinson (fourth in the 1500m).

Meanwhile, David Jones ran in the 800m, coming seventh and just missed the club’s age group record for 65 plus.

Dan Boyd made his first appearance of the season, enjoying a typically busy day with a second place in the long jump and fourth in the 200m in a personal best.

Following an injury to another athlete, Boyd was a last-minute runner in the 100m and was elated to achieve a big PB of 11.1secs.

Fergus Allison was another athlete to show a massive improvement, leading the field for most of the race and, while he was just pipped by top Tipton runner Tom Holden, he was delighted to improve his best by seven seconds to 4.12.9.

New signing this season, Imogen Green, is showing her class and has made an enormous contribution to the team’s success.

Starting by winning the long jump (5.32m) and coming a close second in the javelin (31.29m), Green moved on to the sprint hurdles where she was just pipped for first place (16.0).

Green went on to win the B high jump (1.60) — a strong event for Stratford as Issy Cain-Daley won the A competition (1.63).

It was also a successful day for Paula Williams, winning the B sprint hurdle race, coming second in the triple jump and winning the shot put in a new club record.

At the end of the day the Stratford team clinched the match win by winning both women’s relays in two thrilling races, emphasising the teamwork and team spirit which had been on display all day.

Match scores: 1 Stratford on Avon AC 370pts, 2 Tipton Harriers 360, 3 Leicester Coritanian 351.5, 4 Dudley & Stourbridge H 286, 5 Daventry 264.5, 6 Sutton in Ashfield AC 221, 7 Banbury 177.

Overall standings: 1 Tipton Harriers 20pts, 2 Stratford on Avon AC 16, 3 Leicester Coritanian 16, 4 Dudley & Stourbridge H 11, 5 Daventry 9, 6 Sutton in Ashfield AC 8, 7 Banbury 5.