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THE MAGAZINE DEDICATED TO BASILDON ATHLETICS CLUB
runners from the
Basildon’s youngsters clock
up list of personal records at
junior league openers
All the action
from the 2017
Coverage of the spring road season, Essex
County Schools, World Indoor Masters,
Southern Senior Championships and the
national U23 Championships. Brought
together with all the other news from
around the club.
ATHLETES IN ACTION
TALK OF THE TOWN
From Peterborough to Mile End, Luton to
Southend, BasMag has a round up of
athletes in action since the start of the track
COUNTY CHAMPIONSHIPS 2017
With 18 gold medals from this year’s county
championship weekend, Basildon’s athletes
cleaned up. But how do their performances
A WINNING MENTALITY
An outstanding career in track and field has
brought medals and trophies to one of
Basildon’s best known coaches. We look
back at the career of Vespa Ellis.
ALL FOR YOU
A diary of forthcoming road, track and
multi-terrain events, covering local, regional
and national competitions.
BATTLE OF THE BUCS
With the World University Games looming
at the end of the summer, Basildon’s
athletes in higher education had an added
incentive to perform at this year’s British
EASTERN YOUNG ATHLETES’ LEAGUE
IN THE MIX
Basildon opened their Eastern Young
Athletes League campaign in May with a
respectable third place finish.
Conditions of supply: BasMag shall not, without the permission of the publishers first given, be lent, sold, hired out or
otherwise disposed of in a mutilated condition or in any unauthorised cover by way of trade, or affixed to or as any part of
a publication or advertising, literary or pictorial matter whatsoever. BasMag is fully protected by copyright and nothing
may be printed wholly or in part without permission. BasMag is printed in England by Mixam and edited by Joe McGrath..
B A S M A G / S U M M E R 2 017 3
Results / Achievements / Performances /
Club Events / Training Updates / Gossip /
Developments / Success
VIRGIN MONEY LONDON MARATHON 2017
WINTER TRAINING PAYS FOR
MARATHON MAN DAVE
LONG distance duo David Findlay and Simon Tippett flew
the Basildon flag at the 2017 London Marathon, finishing
in commendable times.
Findlay was the first of the two home, completing the
course in 3:32.57, just a couple of minutes outside his
lifetime best, set at last year’s Chelmsford Marathon in
October. His time placed him in the top 600 runners in the
M50 age group.
Basildon’s Southern Athletics League men’s team
manager has enjoyed a strong winter season, completing
the testing “Benfleet 15” multi-terrain course in January in
1:55, the fifth masters athlete home.
He was also a regular scoring runner in the Senior Men’s
cross country team throughout the winter.
Tippett last donned the Basildon vest at last year’s Essex
County Masters’ Championships.
In London, he was also narrowly outside his best which
he set back in 2012, then running for East Essex Tri Club.
This year, representing the other Gloucester Park club,
he clocked 4:00.11 to finish 1,556 in the M45 age category
at the event.
DOUBLE BRONZE FINISH FOR ATHLETES CONTESTING
GLOUCESTER Park athletes brought back
two bronze medals from this year’s Senior
and U20 Championships which took place
on 10 and 11 June 2017.
At the South of England Amateur Athletics
(SEAA) Championships in Crystal Palace, Max
Jones took bronze in the U20 Men’s 1500m
which saw three athletes cross the line in 4
minutes and 12 seconds.
It was later ruled that Barnet’s Thomas
Butler had snatched the gold in 4:12.37
ahead of Adam Moor from Windsor, Slough,
Eton and Hounslow in 4:12.38.
Basildon’s Jones was third in 4:12.74. On
another day, Jones could have taken the
gold as he boasts a lifetime best of 3:56.56,
4 B A S M A G / S U M M E R 2 017
set at the BMC Regional Race in Brighton,
back in May, but it wasn’t to be the case at
Further north, Joe McGrath brought back
an unexpected bronze from the Midland
Counties AA Championships in the Senior
Men’s pole vault. McGrath – who qualifies
for the MCAA area because he was born in
Bristol – was competing in a very windy
Nuneaton. Here, he faced fellow veteran
Derek Hateley, who he had beaten in the
indoor championships earlier in the season.
This time, however, the medal positions were
reversed and McGrath settled for bronze
with a vault of 3.10m.
Hateley took silver with 3.30m and the
ESSEX COUNTY SCHOOLS CHAMPIONSHIPS
EIGHT VICTORIES AND MULTIPLE BESTS AS
BASILDON TRIUMPH AT ESSEX SCHOOLS
BASILDON athletes recorded
eight wins at this year’s Essex
Schools Track & Field
Championships which took
place in Chelmsford on 10 June.
The club’s ongoing strength in
hurdling was once again
evident, with wins for Kiera
Bainsfair in the U17 Women’s
300m Hurdles, Sam Bennett in
the U17 Men’s 100m Hurdles and
Joseph Harding in the U15 Boys’
Both Bainsfair and Harding
recorded lifetime bests at the
event. Bainsfair’s 44.24 seconds
was a full second quicker than
her previous best, set at the
Essex County Championships,
while Harding’s winning time of
10.80 seconds was a personal
best and quicker than his heat. It
was also a tenth of a second
quicker than he set at the
Schools Combined Events
Championships in May.
There was a personal best for
Harrison Chapman too, who is
having a phenomenal season.
Chapman went two seconds
quicker than his heat to win the
400m over the flat in 50.51, a
time that places him 19th
nationally in his age group and
231st nationally across all age
groups, including Senior Men.
Also impressing was two lap
specialist Oliver Lill who won the
Snippets from around
the club across all
disciplines and ages
Athletes have until 8 August to
register for this year’s South of
England U17 Championships.
Enter online at http://seaa.org.uk.
800m in 1:59.23. Lill, who is in his
first year in the Under 17 Men’s
age group is ranked 16th in his
age group nationally, thanks to a
nippy 1:55.73 at the BMC races in
Eltham at the end of May.
There was good news from
the field events too, with
Kenneth Ikeji setting a personal
best in the Hammer, throwing
the 4K Hammer out to 51.98.
This stunning throw puts
Kenneth top of the UK
leaderboard for his age group by
more than a metre.
In the Javelin, Harriette
Mortlock won a competitive
battle in the Under 15 Women’s
event with a throw of 31.36, just
five centimetres further than
Havering’s Adelaide ThatcherGray. The podium topping
positions could have been even
higher, with a further six athletes
finishing in silver medal
In the 1500m, there were
three silver medal performances
from Daniel Riley (U17 Men),
Luke Meridew (U15 Boys) and
Grace Burrell (U17 Women).
Cameron Ellis continued his
strong season with a second
place in the Long Jump, leaping
5.81m for a new personal best.
In the Triple Jump, Andrew
Adegbite added 69 centimetres
to his best, with a jump of 12.79,
putting him 24th in his age
In the Javelin, Jess Walker, had
a noteworthy competition,
throwing 54.18m – a new
It was also places him eighth
in his age group nationally.
NEW WEBSITE FOR
England Athletics has told
athletes to check medications on
a website before competitions.
QUALIFY AS A COACH IN
SOUTHEND IN SEPTEMBER
U20 & SENIOR AREA CHAMPIONSHIPS
championship was won by Callum Court of
Cardiff in 4.40m.
Back in London, there could easily have been
more medals. Stephen Strange (pictured, left)
continued his recent run of form in the 800m,
breezing through the heats in a time of 1:56.08
and going even quicker in the semi final,
crossing the line in 1:56.01.
While his time was quick, it was a mere one
second outside of the fastest losers spots to
make the final. Had he had the opportunity to
run this time in the final, it would have placed
him fifth. Two further medal hopes on the day
were with Victoria Oshunremi in the Women’s
Triple Jump and Archie Leeming in the Shot.
Oshunremi looked like she might grab a medal,
but finished 4th with a jump of 11.59m.
Her personal best of 11.85m would have been
enough for bronze, but she was up against a
small, but talented, field. Archie Leeming – who
smashed the club record again at this year’s
Essex County Championships – was hoping for
another monster performance in the Shot.
Sadly, it wasn’t to be and a 13.25m put was
insufficient to challenge the medals this time
around. Finally, there were two other
representatives from Basildon who made the
journey to fly the flag for Basildon. In the U20
Men’s 110m Hurdles, Michael Shields ran a
nippy 15.64 seconds against some tough
opponents and Emily Bullis ran 4:59.16 in the
Senior Women’s 1500m.
New coaches can take their first
qualification at Southend on 9
and 10 September 2017. Details
are on England Athletics’ website.
The 2017 Summer Universiade
will be held in Taipei, Chinese
Taipei from the 19 until 30 August.
More details are on the BUCS
B A S M A G / S U M M E R 2 017 5
ENGLAND U20/U23 CHAMPIONSHIPS
IVES OUT OF MEDALS BUT YOUNG
HURDLERS IMPRESS AT NATIONALS
GUTSY 800 metre rising star
Isobel Ives was battled out of
the medals at this year’s England
Athletics U23 and U20
Championships which took
place in Bedford on the 17 and
18 June 2017.
Despite coming through her
heat comfortably, in a time of
2:11.34, she was unable to
match the blistering pace of
Enfield & Haringey’s Isabelle
Boffey who won the Under 20
Women’s 800m in a time of
Ives’s local rival Khahisa
Mhlanga – of Chelmsford AC
- finished in the silver medal
position in 2:06.67 and
Shaftesbury Barnet’s Ellie Baker
finished third in 2:06.96.
Ives held her own in a class
field, however, having returned
from a strong performance at
the Loughborough International
in May where she ran 2:07.88 –
just a fraction outside of her
In the hurdling events,
Basildon again showed its
pedigree. In the Under 18 Men’s
110m Hurdles, Sam Bennett
continued his fine run of form
when he finished in silver medal
position in 13.75 seconds
behind Stratford upon Avon’s
Jack Sumners who clocked
Bennett’s team mate Michael
Shields produced a stellar
performance in the Under 20
Men’s 110 Hurdles, where he ran
a season’s best of 15.17 seconds.
400m hurdler Jack Avery
clocked a new lifetime best in
the Under 23 age group races
finishing sixth in his heat in
All three hurdlers are coached
by Steve Surety.
The standard of this meeting
was so high that spectators
witnessed a new British Junior
record in the Hurdles.
Chesterfield AC’s Alicia Barrett
– who is coached by Jessica
Ennis-Hill’s former coach, Toni
Minichiello, clocked a UK junior
record for the 100 hurdles not
once, but twice, as she eased to
13.07 for a heat and final win.
Basildon had other
representation in this high
standard event in the Under 20
Men’s 1500m, where Max Jones
ran 4:12.77 in the first heat.
ENGLAND Athletics has
opened its 2017 consultation
and will be awarding one
respondent 30,000 points to
spend with hotel group IHG.
The online survey – which
takes around 25 minutes to
complete – is designed to
help athletes of all ages
shape athletics in England for
the future and help the
organisation with its future
In addition to the main
prize for one lucky
competitor, 10 others will be
picked to receive a New
Balance athletics T Shirt.
To complete the survey,
log on to surveymonkey.co.
WORLD INDOOR MASTERS
BMAF CHAMPION CLINT BRINGS WORLD
BRONZE HOME TO GLOUCESTER PARK
REIGNING British Masters
Indoor Pentathlon champion,
Clint Nicholls, added a world
bronze to his collection of
medals as the 2017 indoor
season came to a close.
Nicholls – who competes in
the 35-39 age group – clocked
personal bests in the 60m
Hurdles (8.79) and the 1,000
metres (3:09.91) to beat rivals
from around the world at the
World Masters Championships
in Daegu, South Korea at the
end of March.
Nicholls was initially in
contention for the title, but a
disappointing Shot and High
Jump allowed France’s Laurent
Jobard (pictured right, middle)
and Hong Kong’s Chit Wing Ng
(pictured right, left) to move
It’s been a strong winter
season for Nicholls, who has
collected numerous titles,
thanks to an intensive and
co-ordinated winter training
programme from coach Vespa
Ellis. In the Men’s M35 age
group, he has taken gold in the
British Masters Pentathlon,
British Masters Indoor Shot,
British Masters High Jump,
England Athletics Inter Area
High Jump and silver in the
British Masters 60m Hurdles and
Essex County Championships
60m. In the Senior Men’s age
group, he has also taken bronze
at the Essex County
6 B A S M A G / S U M M E R 2 017
Championships 60m Hurdles.
Nicholls – a star performer in
Basildon’s Southern Athletics
League squad last year – will
tackle the summer season with
renewed confidence and will
surely be among the contenders
for the British Masters Decathlon
title, in September.
BRENTWOOD HALF MARATHON
LAURA LANDS SILVER IN BRENTWOOD WHILE TEAM
MATES DELIVER ACROSS ALL AGE GROUPS
BASILDON’S road team
entered the spring with a
scorching opener at the 2017
Brentwood Half Marathon,
snatching a silver medal in the
Laura Brooks (pictured, right)
took second spot by just five
seconds, ahead of Dartford Road
Runners’ Hazel Behagg and less
than two minutes behind
Chelmsford’s Alexa Joel, the
winner of the women’s race.
Brooks’s time of 83:47 was a
lifetime best and places her top
of Basildon’s female half
marathon rankings for the year
so far at the time of writing.
Team mate Kirsty Tydeman
was just a minute outside of the
medal positions in the individual
standings, finishing fourth in
85:06, another lifetime best.
In the men’s race, it was James
Tydeman (pictured, below) who
led the team home, finishing
ninth overall with a huge
personal best of 75:15 – some
seven minutes off of his
previous best of 82:46, set back
Christian Gray, meanwhile,
was the second Under 20 home,
in a time of 86:32, sufficient for
76th in the overall finishing
This year’s Brentwood Half
was hosted over a different
course to previous years,
prompting much discussion
among runners as to whether
the difficulty level had
Elsewhere, Basildon’s Under
23 Daisy Durden completed the
Bath Half Marathon in March
with a new personal best of
1:41.39 and Janine Phillips ran
the Chertsey Half earlier in the
year in 2:02.24, just two minutes
shy of her lifetime best.
BASILDON’S JUNIORS JOIN THE BRENTWOOD PARTY
JUNIOR athletes from
Basildon AC took all three
podium positions at this year’s
Rotary Brentwood Fun Run,
hosted alongside the
Brentwood Half Marathon.
Oliver Lill won the three mile
race in 16:53 ahead of team
mates Luke Savage (17:11) and
Joshua McGill (17:22). The
performances by the Basildon
trio were sufficient to keep
Havering’s Samuel Atkins out of
the medals. Lill – who goes up to
the Under 17 age group on the
track this summer looks set for a
promising track season. He has
enjoyed a successful winter
season, finishing second at the
London U17 Indoor Games in
the 800m and dipping under the
two minute mark in the same
event for only the second time
in his career at the England
Indoor Championships in
Sheffield, back in February.
B A S M A G / S U M M E R 2 017 7
ESSEX AA COMBINED EVENTS
GOLD AND SILVER IN
ESSEX MULTI CHAMPS
JOSEPH Harding opened his
outdoor season with County
Championship gold at this year’s
Essex Pentathlon Championships,
held in Grays on 1 May.
Basildon’s multi-events rising
star was fresh from an indoor
season that saw him win the
national age group combined
events championships in March
and he was hungry for another
title. Harding would not be
disappointed, as he dominated
the hurdles race, winning in a
time of 11.3. He followed up his
impressive hurdles performance
with a new personal best in the
High Jump of 1.69m. His Long
Jump of 6.24m would have been
superb for any athlete his age, but
this was some 40cm down on his
mark from the national indoor
championships, two months
The title could have been
confirmed after his Shot Put, with
a distance of 10.99m, but he was
to be challenged in the final event
of the day, the 800m, which saw
him home in 2:18.7, sufficient only
for second. That failed to impact
the final result, though. The title
was in the bag when he clocked a
final score of 2,947 points.
The second athlete
representing Basildon at these
championships was Kiera
Bainsfair. The Under 17 had also
enjoyed success at the national
indoor championships two
months earlier, but she would be
tested in Thurrock. In Sheffield,
she had managed to see off local
rival Jessica Hopkins to take the
bronze medal, but Hopkins was
keen to settle the score this time
and pushed Bainsfair throughout
Ultimately, two personal best
performances in the Shot and
Long Jump would not be enough
to see off Chelmsford’s Hopkins
who was outstanding on the day.
Bainsfair even equalled her best
in the High Jump, clearing 1.62m.
She also ran an impressive 800m,
winning in 2:28.5. Her points total
on the day was 3,421, just a slither
behind Hopkins who won with
3,478 to take gold.
VESPA TOP RANKED
IN UK MASTERS SHOT
CLUB coach and life-long
Basildon athlete Vespa Ellis is
currently sitting pretty at the top
of the UK rankings for the female
Masters’ shot in the V60 age group
Masters after securing a league
record in the first round of the
Eastern Masters’ League.
Her throw of 8.97m puts her
just 2cm ahead of the reigning
British Masters indoor champion
- Wakefield AC’s Jennifer Ibbitson
– who threw 8.95m at Lee Valley
earlier this year.
Ellis could have easily extended
her mark with a subsequent
throw which travelled further but
was unable to balance the
momentum and remain inside
Her victory – which was also a
club record in the age group - was
over 1.5m clear of the
Chelmsford’s Shirley Quinn
managing an effort of 7.43m.
The throw was the stand out
performance from a depleted
Basildon team who competed in
the first round of the Eastern
Masters League at Thurrock in
Despite securing half a dozen
victories on the night, a lack of
athletes in the oldest age group
hampered Basildon’s score.
TO BUILD ON OUR
The start of the 2017
season has underscored
the gains already made
by Basildon team
members from winter
The dominance of the
first Southern Athletics
highlighted not just the
performance but an
improvement in attitude.
It seems, once again,
we want to win. And we
want to win together.
TOGETHER AS ONE
While the 2016 season
had individual success
stories, team successes
were lesser spotted. But
the change in attitude
- already noted by some
coaches - goes beyond
the S.A.L. Our athletes
want to see their team
In the leagues, it
means that little extra
injection of effort to pick
up an extra place, doing
one more event to get the
point and supporting
those who do just that.
On an individual level,
it means recognising the
Basildon athletes make
- and there are many.
CELEBRATE THE WIN
From BUCS to
BMAF, from County to
Country, our athletes are
performing. And we are
beginning to realise how
broad and wide-ranging
our pool of talent and
tally of trophies is
becoming. Let’s keep it
up.Trackside on a
Monday and Wednesday
night, you hear athletes
barking at each other, to
work harder, to run
faster, to hurdle better, to
The young sprinters
‘trash talking’ or the
bemoaning their aches
and pains don’t take
away from the positivity
that’s growing in the
club. It’s the same in
competition. As well as
being the best at the
S.A.L. in Luton, we were
the loudest. Our athletes
had support. Is it any
wonder they did so well?
At the time of writing,
we were about to enter
the time of year when
major championships are
Coming up we have
the Southern age group
counties and the
nationals. For a select
few, there may even be
the promise of
Now is the time to take
an interest in those
around you. Go beyond
your discipline, your
training group, your age
group. Recognise the
work and discipline it
takes to succeed, even if
it is in an event that you
don’t fully understand.
And most importantly,
enjoy the victories. It
looks like we are set to
have more than a few.
Buckle up for a blistering
summer of achievement.
vaulters and runners,
let’s stack up the medals
and show what
Gloucester Park really
has to offer.
B A S M A G / S U M M E R 2 017 9
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