Jenny strikes gold and clocks up European qualifying time

Jenny Walsh with her medals from the Northern event sat Sport City Manchester
Jenny Walsh with her medals from the Northern event sat Sport City Manchester

SPENBOROUGH Athletic Club’s Jenny Walsh, pictured, has had a busy month, winning gold medals and earning a place in the European Championshps.

She struck gold at the Northern Championships held at Sport City, Manchester, earlier this month.

Jenny won the 800m in a time of 2 minutes 9 seconds. She also won the 1,500m in 4.27, taking both titles comfortably having led from the start.

Jenny was hoping for a quicker time in the 1500m but the weather conditions weren’t in her favour.

The European qualifying time for the Under-20 women is 4.22 and having already run 4.23.7 she was hoping to run close to the 4.22.

The wins gave her confidence to go to the England Under-20 championships at Bedford last weekend and try again.

This time the 1,500m race was quicker from the start and she kept with the leading pack. By 700m there was a clear group of six athletes and throughout the next 300m this was reduced to five.

On the last lap Georgia Peel from the AFD Club picked up the pace with Jenny and two other athletes chasing. Then at 50m to go the leader was clear but Jenny put on a magnificent finish to go well clear in second and close the leader down to earn a superb personal best time of 4.21.2 which gave her the European qualifying time.

Jenny and her coach Deborah Rowlands are now waiting to hear from the selectors on Monday to confirm she has been chosen to represent Great Britian in the Under-20 European Championships in Tallin, Estonia between July 21 and 24.

The Spenborough athlete has worked hard over the winter and spring and has made a huge improvement on her track times.

She has already gained two England cross country vests so to gain a Great Britain vest would be fantastic. Jenny is ranked number two in UK for 1,500m, fifth for 800m and sixth for 3,000m.

Jenny is currently self-funded and is seeking for sponsorship to help with kit and travel expenses.

She was in Gateshead, yesterday (Thursday) to represent West Yorkshire Schools in the 800m at her final English Schools Track and Field final where she is hoping to add to the Cross Country title she won in March.

Spenborough’s Sarah Roberts, earned a silver medal in the javelin at the Northerns, with a slight injury, in 44.21 metres and improved it at the England Championships with 44.82m to finish sixth. She is hoping to be fully fit to represent West Yorkshire Schools and improve her personal best of 49.17m she is ranked fourth in the UK.