The road relay season got under way with the combined North West and County Championships taking place at Stanley Park in Blackpool on Saturday. Bury athletes recorded some excellent performances and some teams secured medals.

Performance of the day came from Brandon Quinton in the under 15 boys race. Leading the team of three runners on the opening leg Brandon set the fastest time of the day for the region of 10.31 bringing the team home in first place. Oliver Donnelly took over on second leg and his 11.33 effort held Bury in 3rd place. Taking the final leg was young Sam Kelly and the pace was just too hot for him, with his 13.20 leg securing 14th place overall and 5th out of the Greater Manchester teams.

The under 13 girls team ran well to take a bronze medal in the county race. Grace Gibson led off and her 13.45 effort saw her hand over to Reilly Carson in 20th place overall. Reilly took 13.33 to complete the second leg to hand over to Freya Potts in 13th. Freya ran a storming leg of 12.27, the fastest out of all the Greater Manchester teams, to bring the team back in 6th place overall, but 3rd in Greater Manchester.

The senior women’s team was also in the medals. Sophie Whittaker took the first leg handing over in 4th place recording a very respectable 20.22. Christie Cook took the second leg with her 23.06 effort bringing the Bury team in 12th overall. Katie Geelan demonstrated her strength, working through the field to finish in 9th overall, but her 21.10 leg did secure the team the bronze medal in the Greater Manchester section.

The senior men’s A quartet took 19th place overall and 6th out of the Greater Manchester teams. Ben Coop ran strongly on the first leg to hand over in 12th place, his time of 20.57 being one of the fastest on the day by a Greater Manchester athlete. Fitness instructor Luke Harreld continued to show good form and his 22.34 leg moved the team up to 11th place. The 6k course was a little short to suit ultra-distance runner Byron Edwards, but his time of 24.11 saw him hand over to Chris Makay in 16th. Chris put in a hard effort, but had to concede three places with his 25.18 effort holding Bury in the top 20 and taking 6th place out of the Greater Manchester teams. The men’s B team took 60th overall with Matt Grice (25.58), Andy Worthington (28.56), Iestyn Rimmer (28.10) and Pete Bates (26.44) all working hard for the team.

The under 11 girls team took 26th overall with Isabel Lawson (7.29), Jemima Miles (7.51) and Lola Potts (7.20) all performing consistently. The under 13 boys A team of Gilbert Vaughan (12.18), Adam Coxon (14.41) and Noah Carter (14.56) took 27th overall and 8th out of the Greater Manchester teams. The B team of John Murphy (15.51) and William Merrick (14.43) did not have athird leg runner. Similarly the under 17 women’s team of Heledd Rimmer (14.16) and Ellie Carter (12.58) did not finish as a complete team.

Bury’s growing crop of multi-event athletes competed over in Stockport at the open combined events meeting for junior athletes, one of the last outdoor track and field events of the season. Patrick Clarke was the star performer, winning the under 15 boys pentathlon with a pb score of 2076. His performances included a new pb in the 800m, the 80m hurdles and the shot. Jay Cook continues to go from strength to strength and took bronze medal in the under 13 pentathlon with a new best in the high jump.  There were great performances from sisters Amy and Erin Garroch. Amy, competing in the under 15s pentathlon, shrugged off a disappointing run in the hurdles to set new lifetime bests in the long jump, high jump and shot and take 5th place overall. Erin took 6th place in the under 13s quadrathon setting a new best in the long jump. Thomas Halford finished 4th in the under 13 boys quadrathon with new best performances in the long jump and shot. Lucy Pixton took 10th in the under 15s pentathlon setting pbs in the 800m, 75mhurdles and long jump; a position matched by Abigail Howard in the under 13s pentathlon. Daisy Worthington, Grace Goodsell and Erin Kenyon also competed in the open events. Grace won the long jump with a leap of 5.28 and set a lifetime best in the javelin of 19.56. Erin won the 1500m and finished just behind Grace in the javelin with a throw of 16.98. Daisy finished runner up in the shot with a best putt of 8.43.

On Sunday the many of the clubs younger athletes competed in the first Sportshall athletics fixture of the season with many making their debuts in the event.