YDL U17/U20 Match 3, Milton Keynes

Our third premier league event in 2018 took us to Milton Keynes on a hot day so the team managers’   5 point mantra for the day was sun cream, water, shade, hat and t-shirt.

The team was a little depleted with injuries and reduced events for those selected for English Schools, but there were several notable results. The boys once again dominated in the 800m, 1500m, 3K & steeplechase races for both age groups whilst the girls scored top points in the steeplechase and 3k events. A welcome return from injury for our U20w 800m athlete saw top points too.

There were 20 PBs for our athletes and given the temperatures, that is no mean feat on a track that was bathed in hot sunshine all day.

We started the day in 4th place overall, knowing that beating Notts AC would see us in third place and in the play off finals. The frequent updates saw us bobbling around 2nd, 3rd or 4th all day. The final result saw us in 3rd place, beating Notts by a few points. Overall in the league, we have finished 3rd.

This is the first season for this age group in the Premier league. The competing teams are tough and some of the best in the country, let alone the midlands. Not really knowing what to expect in this new league, our soft target for this first season was 4th place which would have secured our position in the premier league again next season. Coming 3rd is an astounding achievement for these young athletes and Cheryl & I are proud to be the team managers of such high achieving teenagers. It means that we go forward to the play off finals against the 3 teams from the South/West league together with Birchfield & Rugby & Northampton who beat us into 3rd.

Sadly we have had to withdraw from the play offs. Our available team was less than half of the size we have normally taken and this would have meant athletes doing many events each which increased the injury risk. The decision to withdraw was difficult and not taken easily, but it’s the right thing to do for the team.