A strong showing from Oxford athletes at the BUCS Indoor Championships in Sheffield last weekend bodes well for the dark blues ahead of the Varsity Indoor match against Cambridge (known as FEAR) this coming weekend.
Arguably the performance of the day came from Christina Nick in the women’s shot putt. Having qualified with a throw of 10.50m on Friday evening, the German discus specialist returned on Sunday to place 11th with a pb of 11m, which places her 5th on the club’s all-time list.
“I am really pleased to hit 11m, as it is the furthest I have ever thrown and a Blues standard”, explained Masters student Nick, who is helping keep her country’s reputation as a successful throwing nation alive.
Team Captain Katie Holder was unlucky to miss out on making the shot final by one place, having thrown a pb of 10.06m in qualifying.
The multi-talented Montana Jackson jumped 11.25m to qualify for the triple jump final.
Although she was disappointed to clear only 11.11m in the final, her ninth place was a three place improvement on last year and the second year medic joked that if she improves by the same number of positions in her potential four years left at Oxford, by her fifth year she will be standing on top of the podium!
Unfortunately, it does not tend to work like that, but having also jumped 4.88m in long jump qualifying, Jackson was content with her weekend’s work. Sam Rawlinson was also in action in the long jump, clearing 4.13m for 22nd in qualifying.
The top two positions by Oxford athletes were set by Emily Moss in 5th the 1500m and Sam Trigg in 6th in the triple jump.
Hoping for a good time in what was always tipped to be a quick race, Moss went with the fast early pace, looking relaxed through the halfway mark, but ultimately her legs tied up over the closing laps.
Trigg, meanwhile, was just shy of his personal best with a leap of 14.52m for his highest ever BUCS placing and will have high hopes of a big pb outdoors this year.
Next, it was the turn of the 400m boys to shine. Having claimed bronze in the 4x400m at the BUCS Outdoor Championships last year, the relay squad fancied their chances in the shorter 4x200m event indoors, so were disappointed when they missed the team declaration deadline before their event.
Undeterred, they set to work on their individual events. Men’s captain Adam McBraida made the semi-finals of the 200m, remarkably clocking an identical 22.37 in the heat and again for third in his semi, whilst club president Ralph Eliot was third in his 400m heat with 51.6, having been ill the week before.
George Gundle made the 400m semi-finals, having clocked 50.50 for 2nd in his heat, before winding up 6th in his semi with 50.72.
400H specialist Craig Morten stepped up to 800 and was rewarded with a pb and a place in the semi-final. After a 1:59.40 for third in his heat, Morten improved his lifetime best to 1:59.32 for 6th in the semi-final.
Teammate Louis Gardner was third in his 800 heat with 2:02.20. Clearly wintering well, the likeable 400 squad will make sure they are in the 4x400m relay at BUCS outdoors in May and will undoubtedly be even more raring to go!
Elsewhere, high jump pair Will Pargeter and Alice Richardson jumped 1.80m and 1.50m respectively in qualifying, Dakota McCoy ran a season’s best of 9.64 in the 60H, whilst Ian Shevlin clocked 7.57 in the heats of the 60m.
By Emily Moss – Follow @EmilyMoss2
All in all, it was a successful weekend for Oxford and with many other athletes set to be drafted in for FEAR, it suggests that Oxford are on track for some serious shoe tabbing this weekend!
Follow OUAC on Twitter @OUAthletics
Visit Oxford University AC