It was strange to come back to the Club Championships after a while away – I suppose I’d been heavily involved in the organisation most years since my daughter first took part as an U9, winning her first ever medal in the long jump! But with several stalwarts of the Club either having drifted away or being off-Island last Sunday it was down to one or two relative newcomers to pull the whole thing together – and a very good job they did.
I was commandeered to be in charge of high jump, as well as act as Field Referee. As it so happened the entry levels for the jumps and throws were thin so it wasn’t the most demanding of lunchtimes in the Jersey sunshine.
As is always the case it was a day mainly for the young ones; there simply isn’t the competition at U15 and above for anyone to take part, though entry is possible in theory for all club members. The turnout from the Minis was excellent and it’s always nice to see most of them wearing their Spartan T-shirt with pride. For many it is their first taste of an athletics meeting and, in particular, the gun! Jim Evans was wheeled out to act as Starter and, though Dave Dingle was incomparable in the seasons he did the job, Jim did a top job. Carl Prosser amazingly took all the times unaccompanied on the timekeepers’ stand – a great effort that.
There were, as always, some excellent performances. However the day lacked a je ne sais quoi, a bit of pizzazz. I can only put that down to lack of numbers; the entry levels weren’t bad but too many of the field events – the throws in particular, were not properly contested. The Club has a great tradition in throws and field events generally and, though we have great talent at the top of the club, we are definitely sliding away down the age groups. That is for the present day committee to address. There are some good people on board at present.
For my part I am making myself available for a bit of coaching again, as required. I love being out in the open air with the young athletes but wild horses wouldn’t drag me into committee or sub-committee meetings again.