Strong end to season for Hunts AC

HUNTINGDONSHIRE AC Men’s team completed their Southern Men’s League campaign in style in Cambridge


HUNTINGDONSHIRE AC Men’s team completed their Southern Men’s League campaign in style in Cambridge, finishing just nine points behind the eventual league runners-up Bedford AC.

The result meant an overall mid-table finish for Hunts AC, but with a team including seven teenagers, the future looks bright for the club’s promotion hopes next season.

The 17-strong Hunts AC team recorded an impressive 14 victories with throwers Jonathan Edwards and Paul Hayball accumulating six first-place finishes.

Hayball won the A string in the discus, shot putt and javelin, while Edwards won the B string discus and shot putt in club records distances. He added club record number 16 in the hammer.

Hunts AC sprinters have been to the fore for much this season and this meet was no different as the club won both strings of the 100m and the 200m as well as the 4x100m and the 4x400m.

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In the 100m, star sprinter Ryan Palmer, 16, won the A race in a personal best of 11.1 secs with Dave Leadbitter taking the 100m B race and the 200m A.

Hakeem Duckworth-Porter had the luxury of a three-second winning margin in the 200m B race. Palmer, Leadbitter, and Duckworth-Porter later teamed up in the 4x100m, with Jordan Gillbanks on the anchor leg. The comfortable 15-metre win was the club’s fastest time of the year.

Although finishing only third in a highly competitive 800m race, Gillbanks chopped five seconds from his best with 2:00.8. With no training under his belt to justify this kind of time, the 800m could yet turn out to Gillbanks’ best event.

His strength and determination again told in a thrilling 4x400m race against Bedford. After good legs from Peter Downhill, Dave Leadbitter, and 16-year-old Luke Scott, Gillbanks took the baton on equal terms with Matt Nicholson of Bedford.

With 100m to go Gillbanks went into overdrive and pulled away to win the final race of the meet by over a second.