Relay stars seal second for Hunts AC at Bedford

HUNTS AC edged out Milton Keynes in the final event of the day to finish second at the Southern Men s League match at Bedford on Saturday. With just two rounds of the discus and the 4x 400m relay remaining, Hunts AC and Milton Keynes were tied on 84 point

HUNTS AC edged out Milton Keynes in the final event of the day to finish second at the Southern Men's League match at Bedford on Saturday.

With just two rounds of the discus and the 4x 400m relay remaining, Hunts AC and Milton Keynes were tied on 84 points behind host club Bedford.

Three of the club's strongest athletes were competing at the English Schools Championships, meaning that Hunts AC had to rely on a team effort to seal second spot.

Wayne Dubose rose to the challenge, producing his best throw of the competition in the penultimate round of the discus to go half a metre ahead of his Milton Keynes rival. This secured a single-point advantage for Hunts AC going into the day's final event, the 4x400m.

Peter Downhill - who had already won the 400m hurdles A string and 400m B and raced in the 110m hurdles - led the club off, and kept Hunts in contention before handing to Dave Leadbitter.

Leadbitter, the winner in the 200m A earlier in the day, closed the gap and handed over a five-metre lead to Adam Charlton. Charlton, making his return to competition after more than two years out, maintained position for Matt Leadbitter, the day's 400m A winner, on the final leg.

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Leadbitter showed that form in the final straight, turning on the power to pull away from the Milton Keynes runner and win by two seconds. The victory gave Hunts AC second place overall in the match, three points ahead of Milton Keynes.

The 4x400m team also showed their sprint strength in picking up the 4x100m relay title.

Dave Connell demonstrated his versatility by recording the club's fastest 1500m time of the year, before stepping in for Martin Safford, who was injured in the pole vault, to contest the shot putt, discus and javelin.

The final Southern Men's League match of the season is at the St Ivo Outdoor Centre on August 1.

In the English Schools Championships, Paul Hayball threw 13.58m to finish an excellent fourth in the Senior Boys shot putt. Christian Roberts clocked 56.83secs on his way to fifth in his heat, and Jonathan Edwards threw 38.84m to finish 13th in the Intermediate Boys discus.

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