Category Archives: CLUB NEWS

Athlete Spotlight – Edmond Amaning

Sprinter Edmond Amaning’s dedication to TVH through the junior ranks is reaping rich rewards as he goes from strength to strength at senior level.

Starting off as an explosive 60m runner at under 15 level Edmond is now making a big impact at the longer 200m and 400m disciplines.

This year he has already won gold in the Middlesex Championships 200m and a valuable second place in the Lee Valley BAL Premiership 200m with a PB of 20.86.

A 400 m PB of 46.77 set in Florida has been another highlight – as well as a highly satisfying run with the England squad in the Loughborough Relays 4x400m.

Edmond’s time of 21.18 in Sheffield’s British Indoor Trials in February ranks him third in the country this year, although a DQ in the semi meant he didn’t get to fight it out in the final.

Only a temporary blip as Edmond continues on his upward path through the outdoor season.

Performance progression:

  1. How did you get into athletics?

After watching a race on TV, I wanted to try out athletics. I joined my local athletics club TVH and started competing at 14 years old. 

  1. Which achievements in the sport are you proudest of?

This year I was selected to represent England at the Loughborough Internationals meet in the 4 x 400m relay. The team came away with a win and I am happy that I was selected to be a part of that. 

  1. What have been the biggest factors in your development?

Overcoming injuries and keeping a healthy diet. 

  1. What’s the toughest challenge you’ve overcome?

Sacrificing time to train is a challenge, but it’s always worth it in the end. 

  1. What part has TVH played in your development?

TVH has exposed me to high level competition which is perfect for me as I get to race with people that push me to run faster.

  1. What are your top athletics goals – for the near-term and the long-term?

I am taking every day as it comes, my near-term goal is making sure I’m staying healthy and fit. My long-term goal is to continue learning more about myself and how to improve in the sport.

  1. What are your interests and aims outside athletics?

Outside of athletics I am a web developer. I have developed websites for a range of clients and I am currently working on several projects. 

  1. What’s your top training tip?

If it ain’t broke don’t fix it, but prevention is better than cure.

  1. Describe your personality in three words!

Opportunistic, risk-taker & resilient 





Chris Smith crowned England Mountain Running champion

TVH mountain running powerhouse Chris Smith stormed to the English Mountain Running title at Keswick on Sunday. An outstanding result made even more remarkable by the fact that Chris recently celebrated his 40th birthday! It means Chris will will his 10th GB vest at the European uphill running champions in Slovenia on July 8.
Below is Chris’ own account of the race, which was also written up on the England Athletics website:
Chris Smith writes:
On a warm but windy day in Keswick in the Lake District, starting not far from the town centre, we were to tackle one of the peaks that overlooks the town – Skiddaw and the infamous Jenkins Hill.  The marked 11.3km route took us round the bottom of latrigg before taking on Jenkins Hill (the steepest part) before heading up right to the top of Skiddaw with the finish line being the trig point.  A climb of 1080m. This was an uphill race.  First to the top wins.  First four get picked to run at the European uphill running champions in Slovenia on 8th July.
A small select group of runners had assembled. The majority of the top ten that were to finish the race that day had been in a GB mountain running team in the last few years.  The field was quality rather than quantity. 
My aim was to make the team for Slovenia so I started the race strong, committing myself to take the lead right from the gun. It would be either a gutsy/confident move or headstrong and premature.  After the first mile I had a small lead and pushed on making the most of the undulating course before we started the big climb to the top. Andrew Douglas from Scotland and fellow GB runner was never far behind and as we approached the start of Jenkins Hill we were neck and neck.  Douglas has been in fine form winning the inter-counties fell running champs a few weeks prior and had more recently got a podium position at a mountain running European cup event. That class showed as he gradually edged clear to 20, 30 then 50m. I dug in for 
the next 40 odd minutes of lung busting running. It was about ignoring the quad burn, not panicking and not letting the gap to Andrew get any bigger.  The main priority though was staying clear of a chasing pack of three.  Made up of a British felling running champ, a 2 x GB mountain runner and one of the best orienteers the UK has. 
What kept me going during that time?
I had ran a PB by 5 seconds at the Highgate track 10k two weeks before so I knew I was in good shape.  I had also trained at the altitude centre in London that has a chamber with a treadmill in it that is equivalent to running at 2700m above sea level. Having big lungs and working on your vo2 max helps and was paying dividends.
I had also done some good hill training sessions on the South Downs building up over a number of weeks to 10×5:30mins uphill efforts.  When I do do hill work I make it count, this session lasts for an hour and a half.  The mental and physical stress that you put yourself though in a session like that, particularly in the last few reps is similar to what you feel in a race.  Tired and lacking in energy I knew what to do, keep focused, keep my rhythm and form but above all stay positive. 
That discipline keep me going ever closer to the top, and my aim to make the team as a V40.  
I finished 2nd, 30 secs behind Andrew Douglas and 30 secs in front of Chris Arthur, Chris Farrell and Graham Gristwood.
Job done.  The jog down took as long as the run up but this time we got to enjoy the view.

TVH Athlete Spotlight – Jude Bright-Davies

The rapid strides made by Jude Bright-Davies over the last three years have developed him into one the UK finest young triple jumpers. He has leaped to number one UK ranking in the U20 triple jump this year, having claimed a England U20 indoor gold at Sheffield in February and set a new PB of 15.56 when coming fifth in the British Indoor Team Trials.  He pulled on an England vest at a meeting in Vienna in January.

Jude’s great start to this year comes on the back of some fine performances in 2016 which propelled him to gold in the England Athletics U20 outdoor Championships at Bedford, as well as a silver in the England indoor championships. He is also a high-quality long jumper, adding a Middlesex indoor gold this year to a growing collection since he started competing intensively in 2014 as an U17, including sprinting with the Track Academy at Willesden.

Last season was disrupted by an injury in who the European Junior Championships and Jude’s big target this year is to qualify for that event to make up for that disappointment. He has bounced back well from that injury and we wish him all the best for the outdoor season which gathers pace with the Middlesex T & F Outdoor Championships on May 13-14.

Performance progression:

1. How did you get into athletics ?

Before secondary school I didn’t even know what athletics was! I was introduced to Triple Jump in a PE lesson and have enjoyed it ever since.

2. Which achievements in the sport are you proudest of?

My proudest achievement would probably be from the National Outdoor Champs last season as I had been troubled with injury throughout the outdoors and wasn’t expecting anything huge and managed to PB and win the competition.

3. What have been the biggest factors in your development?

My coach, David Johnson, has been key to my development. He’s coached me since I first started training for athletics and has enabled me to develop into an international athlete.

4. What’s the toughest challenge you’ve overcome?

After getting injured at the European Championships in July I’ve had to rehab my ankle and catch up on lost training in order to be ready in time for the indoor season that just passed. It was definitely a tough few months!

5. Who have been your heroes/role models? And your mentors?

In current international triple jump I would say I look up to Christian Taylor as he’s a 2x World and Olympic Champion and has also had jumps close to the world record. He’s not only a great jumper but has really quick 200m and 400m times.

6. What part has TVH played in your development?

TVH has always kept me updated as to what competitions are available to compete in such as the British League so that I can plan my season around them and contribute when I can.

7. What are your top athletics goals – for the near-term and the long-term? 

First and foremost I would like to qualify for the European Junior Championships this year. The standard is 15.70m so I’ve still got 14cm to go! I’d also like to break the 16m barrier this year. In future I’d want to keep competing at an international level and compete in a world championship.

8. What are your interests and aims outside athletics?

I have my A-Level exams this year so I would like to get the grades to secure my place in my desired university. I also like playing table tennis and play the piano.

9. What’s your top training tip?

Execution starts in training so take every rep, set or run seriously!

10. Describe your personality in three words!

Determined, Ambitious and Tenacious

Two Gold and Three Silver Medals at BUCS

The British Universities & Colleges Sport Outdoor Athletics Championships (BUCS) held in Bedford between 29th April and 1st May. Once again this proved a success for TVH athletes, withthe 2017 outdoor season already getting off to a fantastic start as athletes set personal bests, win medals and earn their University points.

Zoey Clark in her final year at university became BUCS 400m champion for the first time. Zoey eased her way into the final with easy winning runs in the heats (55.48) and semi-final (54.65). In windy conditions in the final, Zoey still managed to run her second fastest ever time over a single lap of the track, 52.75, to take the BUCS title by over 1 second.

Another maiden BUCS gold came from TVH’s new higher competition athlete, Clare Maurer, with a great clearance in the pole vault at 3.80m. Clare is a great addition to the ladies squad and we look forward to seeing her competing for TVH in the national league.

Having represented GB at the Fazaa Para Athletics Championships in Dubai at the end of March, AmarMazigh Aichoun was back in action in Bedford competing for his university. Amar had a fantastic competition by winning two silver medals in the Ambulatory 100m and 200m with very good times of 12.47 and 25.05 into strong headwinds of over 2m/s.

Tayla Benson was also in fine form in the 100m hurdles. Tayla narrowly missed out on a place in the final when running a new lifetime best time of 14.44 to finish 3rd in her semi-final, having earlier run 14.89 in her heats into strong headwinds.

One of the favorites for the 400m hurdles final was TVH’s Chris McAlister who looked to be in superb form in his semi-final when finishing nearly 3 seconds ahead of his nearest rival with a solid run of 52.85. In the final Chris had a good lead entering the home straight but cluttered hurdle 8 very badly. He somehow managed to stay on his feet and ran determinedly to the line finishing just outside the medals in 4th place with 53.63.

In a very strong high jump competition, TVH had an amazing four athletes make the women’s high jump final, namely Annabelle Bates, Ella Widdop-Gray, Pippa Rogan and Teele Palumaa. It was Teele who had the best competition in the tricky weather conditions by claiming a fantastic silver medal in her first ever BUCS competition with a jump of 1.78m. Former champion, Pippa, was just outside the medals in 5th with 1.72m and Ella was back close to her best winning valuable points for her university with 1.66m for 6th place. Cambridge University student Annabelle Bates, who’s in a very busy period with her veterinary course, jumped lower than her qualifying height of 1.63m as she finished 12th.

Three TVH athletes contested the triple jump; Ella Widdop-Gray, Lia Stephenson and Teele Palumaa. Both Lia and Teele easiery qualified for the final with jumps of 11.89m and 11.44m. Ella’s jump of 10.06m was good enough for 10th in her qualifying pool. In the final both Lia and Teele narrowly missed out on the medals as they finished 4th and 5th with 12.01m and 11.78m respectively.

Long jumper Ogo Anochirionye was another athlete very close to the medals. Ogo qualified well with a jump of 6.95m for 3rd place in his pool. In the final he went even higher with 7.29m finishing in 4th place.

In her last BUCS competition Danielle Opara finished 4th in a strong shot put competition. Having easily qualified with 12.65m for  2nd place in her pool, Danielle launched the shot put 13.29m in the final.

Ellie-Mae Stokes (HCA) doubled up to do the long jump and javelin. In the long jump, Ellie was close to her personal best with 5.14m  jump placing 7th and a throw of 32.14m for 9th place in her qualifying pools.

Another one of TVH’s throwers who doubled up was Raul Rinken, who competed in the shot put and discus. A throw of 10.70m earnt him 9th place in his shot put qualifying group, however this was not quite enough to make the final. He did however qualify in the discus with a throw of 39.93m and in the final he improved to 41.83m for an excellent 5th place finish.