Last Sunday morning Wallasey Athletic Club members were waking early in preparation for the long coach journey to Gateshead, home of such athletes as Brendan Foster. The first Northern League match was on and the club's senior athletes were to test their skills against five other clubs.
The all-weather track had faded to a salmon pink and, in parts, was very smooth. The water round the steeplechase area made it very slippery, resulting in Bob Brimage, the club's steeplechase exponent, finding himself entangled with the barrier.
A quick hospital check revealed no breakages but the injury was severe enough to have caused extensive bruising and swelling. Bob didn't finish the steeplechase and neither did he manage his other scheduled events, 1500m, high jump and javelin. Club captain, Pete Jones, was forced to change the team round to cover the vacancies created, and was surprised at the results ob-tained even though they were not as good as they may have been.
Chris Preston was picking up the points on the field events as the 'A' string, helped along by Doug Hanna, who also filled in in the 110m hurdles giving the track event specialists the first of only two victories.
Ian Mcleod ran in both the 100m and 200m, his 200m providing the second victory.
Special mention must be made of the brave running of Geoff Boyle in the steeplechase and confident running of Kevin Diable in the 5,000m. Both these are new members competing for the first time on the track.
The club eventually finished a fighting third, only six points behind the second team.
They are Janet McGee, 800m; Kevin McGee, 1,500m and Neil Tunstall, 400m hurdles. The competition is on Friday and Saturday, July 11 and 12, at Kirkby Stadium and over the two-day event some 2,000 athletes will be contesting the title of champion.
400m H - 'A': N. Tunstall. 2nd 58.3: 'B': C. Ashton. 2nd 62.3.
3,000m s/ch - 'A': R. Brimage (ret injured); - 'B': G. Boyle 5th 12.38.7.
5,000m - 'A': J. Roberts 4th 17.05.00: 'B': K. Diable 4th 17.01.00 . Relays
Hammer - 'A': C. Preston 1st 44.42: 'B': D Hanna 4th 17.71.
Pole vault - 'A' D. McAlister d.n.f. 'B': n/a .
Shot - 'A': C. Preston 1st 12.87: 'B': O Hanna 1st.