13 young athletes at Irishtown yesterday (Sat). Fresh from their Assistant Coach course Sean & Viv took the first part of the session with a couple of games, to which the group responded well. Cue to include a few more games in the future.

Then our first-ever (well possibly not from 1942) junior track & field competition – long jump. Standard not great but (a) we’re not expecting great standards at this early stage and (2) these young athletes all live within a stone’s throw of the track – our net has not drifted wider at this time. Results of the LJ competition

U8 Girls – Emma O’Leary 2.50 U10 Girls – Ella Thirroueiz 2.65 U11 Girls – Niamh Ferry 2.95, Isobel O’Leary 2.60, Juliette Storan 2.53, Sarah Maher 2.45 U12 Girls – Orla Murray 3.57, Rachel Maher 3.22
U11 Boys – James Woods 3.22 U13 Boys – Matthew Behan 4.62, Kevin Woods 3.75, Adam Lane 3,35 U15 Boys – Fiachra Thirroueiz 3.50

I’m also coaching Viv who is a pleasant young lady, just started at TCD studying PE. Her event is 800m. Her PB is 2.38 but last year ran only 3.00 dead. These are self-evidently mediocre times but I am impressed with her determination to persevere with the event and to improve. She loves her running and ought to be doing far better. This autumn we started early on upper-body conditioning as Viv was on crutches after hurting her foot, and she is now working with the small track squad for Thursday conditioning. Yesterday I decided we’d do a 600/200 timed sesson to get an approximation of where she’s at right now. She belted off too fast and pulled up after 300m so test aborted. However she ran 3 x 150m very well, and I see a much better flow and stride length already so cause for optimism.