SPENBOROUGH athlete Jenny Walsh produced a magnificent performance in the 1500 metre final at the World Junior Championships in Barcelona last Sunday, setting a new personal best, as she finished eighth.
Jenny ran a gutsy race and hung onto the leading pack for a long time before eventually finishing eighth in a time of four minutes 12.96 seconds - two-and-a-half seconds quicker than her previous best.
It also places Jenny eighth on the UK Under-20 all-time list.
A delighted Jenny said: “I am over the moon. I had nothing to lose and tried to go with the pace to see if I could hold on to them.
“I knew that if I stuck with the leaders I would have got a PB and that was always going to be my aim.
“The whole experience has been amazing. At the European Juniors in Estonia last year, I fell in the final. I have come a long way since then and I have shown that I am a stronger athlete and I have learned so much here.”
Jenny qualified for Sunday’s final after finishing third in her heat last Friday in a time of 4:16.08.
Jenny also earned praise from double Olympic gold medallist Dame Kelly Holmes, who is her mentor.
Dame Kelly said: “You can’t ask more of an athlete to go to a major championships and set a personal best when it really matters.
“I would like to congratulate Jenny and her coach Deborah Rowlands.
“She will have learned a lot from the experience of competing at a major championships, which will stand her in good stead for the future.”
Jenny’s club, Spen AC, have been awarded the prestigious Clubmark Accreditation.
Members had to prove to England Athletics their commitment to being a safe, effective and friendly club.
The club is hosting a three-day Startrack event between Monday, August 13 and Wednesday, August 15.
Startrack is a UKA Academy backed event where youngsters aged between eight and 13 years old can have an introduction to athletic events or develop their skills under qualified coaches.The cost is £6 per day or £15 for the three days and further details are available from Princess Mary Stadium, on any Monday or Thursday evening. Alternatively contact Chris Drake on 01274 678363.