Last-day heroics seal promotion for Bedford & County men

The Bedford & County AC senior men clinched promotion in Yeovil
The Bedford & County AC senior men clinched promotion in Yeovil

Bedford & County’s senior men’s team won promotion to Division 2 of the British Athletics League in the final match of the season at Yeovil.

Despite missing some of the usual stars of the team through injuries, holidays and representative duties 24 athletes made the long trip to the season decider.

In a closely contested match where several teams were in with a chance of promotion, Bedford managed to gain fourth place on the day out of the eight teams competing – handing them second place overall in the division behind Swansea Harriers.

In a close fought match it came down to the very last event – the 4x400m relay – to decide the final placings.

With places changing wildly during the race it was Beds Uni student Massi Dendani with a 50s last lap who brought the team home in fourth place and secured the promotion.

Bedford’s top event was the 1,500m where Ben Alcock won the A string race with Michael Harrison following him in second to win the B string race.

The middle distance events were the backbone of the team’s success with Massi Dendani setting the tone for the club’s performances in the afternoon with a third place in the fast 800m A race, with recent Beds Uni graduate Joe Strange leading home the field by three seconds to win the 800 B string.

Second place A strings were Josh Lunn in the 3,000m steeplechase and Scott Johnson in the high jump, whose 17-year-old younger brother Lee won the B string high jump.

Sharnbrook student Tyler Seager, 17, took third A string in the pole vault with 3.80m, beating a large number of more experienced athletes.

Many of the team achieved new PBs, with Jack Benedickter shaving 0.28s off his 400m hurdles time and a massive 1.06s off his 110m hurdles time with 20.24s.

Tunde Adewale set a new best in the 200m with 23.5s and Craig Emmerson ground out a new best of 10.33.59 in gaining second B string in the steeplechase. Jack Douglas also set a best for the 3,000m in his first attempt at the event.

The biggest improvement came from 17-year-old Robson Angell, who added 6m to his javelin PB with a final throw of 46.89m to gain sixth A string.