Hampshire Grand Prix
Report from the event held on 19 July in Basingstoke.
In lieu of the Oxford open which was cancelled, four Abingdon athletes made the journey to Basingstoke to take part in the Hampshire Grand Prix on Wednesday 19th July.
Paced races and high-class fields led to some quick times and good races. Conditions were almost perfect - not too hot and with a slight breeze which died down as the night went on.
Such was the calibre of this meeting, there were 18 paced 800m races, with Owen Stepney in race two. Owen had very strong run to finish fifth in 1:57.08, just 1 second off his PB and his fastest time since 2014.
Four heats were need to accommodate the 80 athletes taking part in the 3000m. Mieke Bedlington was one of the 26 athletes on the start line in race 3 and after a quick start, she continued her fine form this season to finish in 11:04.02 - an excellent 16 second PB and not far from a sub-11 clocking. Anya Bromley and Katharine Harris took to the start line at 9:40pm for the fourth and final 3000m race. After running together for the entirety of the gruelling 7.5 laps, Anya crossed the line ahead with 11:43.13, and Katharine wasn't far behind in 11:43.44.
This well-supported open is excellent because it allows many athletes to not only gain good times but also valuable race experience - well worth the slightly longer journey and the late night.