MICHAELA Hutchison successfully defended her senior women's 800m title to crown a good day for Hillingdon AC in the South of England Athletics Championships.
The 23-year-old eased through the heats and then in the final she showed her vast experience by sitting in third for the first 600m before unleashing a strong kick to win a close race, in a season's best performance of 2mins 8.66secs. That capped a fine weekend for a small but select band of club members taking part at Crystal Palace.
Matt Revier clocked 4.01.21 in the U20 men's 1500m, shattering his previous best by more than eight seconds to grab an unexpected place in the final.
He got a shock there as the first 800m were run in under two minutes but he clung on and although he faded slightly on the third lap, the welcome sound of the bell spurred him on to seventh place and another personal best time of 4.01.16. That took him to the top of the club rankings and more importantly moved him into the top 70 of the UK Athletics U20 target times.
Martin Bateman, on his first visit to the championships, was Hillingdon's only senior man taking part and he achieved a personal best 4.07.96 in the 1500m heat and the next day he returned to action in the 5000m and sliced 20 seconds off his best as he finished 11th in 15.27.48. Clubmate Nikki de la Salle claimed an encouraging fourth place in the senior women's 3000m final, slashing 22 seconds off her best time as she recorded 10.11.83. Richard Mann had an off day in the U20 men's 1500m heats but still ran a creditable 4.09.42, Jevone Robinson was a bit short of his recent form with a time of 11.58 in the U20 men's 100m heats and James Viner found it tough over one lap in the U20 men's 400m heats with a mark of 55.06.
See www.hillingdonac.co.uk for more information on the club.