With every meeting playing a vital part in Wallasey Athletic Club's preparation for the northern league competition, the club's performance at Stretford last Saturday was very encouraging.
With a team of only 20 athletes, Wallasey was represented in most events by people like Mike Teahan doing several events, Mike competed in the 800 metres, high jump (5ft. 2in.) and javelin (129ft.), finishing no lower than 3rd and then ran a leg in the 4 x 100 metres relay.
Highlight of the afternoon was the excellent running of Mike Teahan and Doug Hanna in the 800 metres. In a large field, both made good starts and running the first leg in 59 secs., looked set for good times.
Doug made his run for home with 200 metres to the finish, going confidently into 2nd place only to tire badly in the final straight, while Mike Teahan was forced to run outside the other runners on the final bend to make up ground on the leaders. In the final scramble for the tape, Mike gained 5th place in 1 min. 58.5 sec. and Doug 6th with 1 min. 59.1 sec., the first time Doug has beaten 2 min. for the event.
In the senior 2000 metres steeplechase Dave Lockley always had command, but this did not overshadow the fine run Bob Brimage had from 7th place on lap one to 3rd place at the finish in a best time of 6 min. 24.9 sec. Also running well was Phil Wade in the youths' 400 metres. He finished a good 3rd in 55.8 sec.
Still with the youths, Alan Ossler ran 18 seconds better than before in the 1500 metres, recording 4 min. 38.5 sec., and Andy Foulton won the youths' shot with a putt of 40ft. 4in.
In the girls' events the 800 metres proved the most successful, with Gillian Ackers running with tremendous courage to finish 4th in the junior race, with Gillian Murray, Susan Lloyd and Julie Halfpenny packing well behind. In the intermediate girls' 800 metres, Susan Carter ran well from the front, nearly beating her experienced club rival Sylvia Brimage, while Lindsey Mutch ran well from behind, nearly catching Gillian King.
The following day saw the men's senior team competing in the Melbourne Trophy meeting at Kirkby, Bob Warburton produced an excellent early season run to record 1 min. 59.2 secs., in the 800 metres and Alan Cheers finished 4th in the triple jump with with 41 ft. 6 ins.
Earlier last week Barbara Banks achieved a personal best time of 4 min. 27 sec. representing England in a 1,500 metres track race at Warsaw. She finished 9th, 8 seconds behind the winner, Paola Pigni, of Italy, and a most successful track season is surely imminent.
While most of the club have been performing at distances ranging from 100 metres to 5000 metres on the track, Mike Whiteside has been carrying the banner in road races of up to 20 miles with much credit. In the Finchley '20' Mike came 74th out of a field of 211 in 2 hr. 11 secs., a fine time for his first attempt at the distance.
Today the club will be travelling to Waterloo for the second Merseyside league meeting.