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World Youth Championships 15th-19th July 2015
Last edited: Monday July 20th 2015
Two of Warrington Athletic Club’s young athletes were part of the Great Britain and Northern Ireland team at The World Youth Athletic Championships held in Cali Colombia from Wednesday 15th to Sunday 19th July.Carys McAulay was running the 800 metres and Harriet Knowles-Jones was running in the 1500 metres.
Harriet was first to run on Thursday 16th in the heats of the 1500 metres.Harriet struggled a bit in her race finishing in 8th place in 4 minutes 25.19 seconds but progressed to the Final on Saturday as a fastest loser.
Around half an hour after Harriet ran it was the turn of Carys in the 800 metres heats.Carys had a comfortable qualification in 2nd place with a time of 2 minutes 07.74 seconds to progress to the Semi-Final on Friday.
On the Friday in her heat two runners fell resulting in the disqualification of the Polish runner but Carys was not one of them.Following the incident she found herself boxed in on the kerb.Carys did not panic and eventually finished in the final automatic qualifying position in 3rd place in 2 minutes 08.70 seconds going through to the final on Sunday.
On Saturday Harriet was towards the rear of the field in the early stages of the final but worked her way up to start the final lap just behind the Kenyan,Ethiopian and Burundi runners.The pace picked up and Harriet found the Medals disappearing but kept pushing all the way and in the finishing straight she caught and passed one of the Kenyans to finish in 4th place in a new personal best time of 4 minutes 18.61 seconds which improves her own club record.The race was won by Bedatu Hirpa (Ethiopia) 4 minutes 12.92 seconds from Dalila Gosa (Burundi) 4 minutes 13.35 seconds and Joyline Cherotich (Kenya) 4 minutes 15.20 seconds.
A shocked Harriet said: “I got fourth? Oh my goodness, I cannot believe it. I really struggled in the heats so I’m so happy to run like that tonight. On the last lap, I was basically running scared. It went off fast but I just tried to be sensible with it. Everyone in the crowd was screaming as we went around – it was unreal. It was a difficult race but I’m so pleased with that.”
On Sunday it was the turn of Carys in her 800 metres final and what a final it was with 5 out of the 8 runners setting new personal best times including Carys.Carys has given it her best effort in a closely contested race she entered the finishing straight in 6th place and battled hard to the finish but had to settle for 4th place in 2 minutes 05.31 seconds.The medal went to Samantha Watson (USA) taking the Gold in 2 minutes 03.54 seconds,Silver to Gadese Ejara (Ethiopia) 2 minutes 03.67 seconds and Bronze Marta Zenoni (Italy) 2 minutes 04.15 seconds.Carys’s time is a new personal best time and as with Harriet improved her own club record.
Afterwards Carys commented “It was a lot harder than I thought it was going to be but I just tried to give everything I had at the end. I got what I wanted – which was top five – so I’m very pleased. Those girls were amazing in that race.
When asked if her endurance teammate’s displays had given her confidence ahead of the final, she said: “Definitely – everyone else has been competing well so I tried to do my best as well.”