Will takes Northern bronze medal on his way to finishing 7th at England Athletics Combined Events Championships.
Competing in any event is grueling enough for any athlete. The time and effort it takes to prepare yourself for competition is not one to be taken lightly. Now imagine competing in TEN events over the course of two days.
Clee AC’s William Seed did exactly that at Beford in the England Athletics Combined Events Championships.
Will is no stranger to Combined Events, reaching the English Schools Finals for the past three years and finishing 6th overall last year in Bedford. However, this was a step into the unknown as he entered into his first Decathlon and at the bottom of the U20 age group.
At 10:25am, the first event of the day was to be the 100m. After a sluggish start which saw him last after 50m, Will managed to claw his way back and clock at time of 11.42s (769 points). A new PB and the quickest U20M.
Long Jump came next for Will, an event which he usually favours. However, after struggling to get going, Will only managed a jump of 6.12m (613 points). A seasons best but down on his 6.45m PB in only his second competion of the season doing Long Jump.
Shot Putt was an event where Will would openly admit he had a mental block last year at the English Schools Finals and it seemed to be playing on his mind again this time around. Despite throwing a PB of 9.81m (474 points) with a 6KG Shot, Will was bitterly disappointed.
High Jump was event 4 of the weekend and Will managed to equal his seasons best with a jump of 1.70m (544 points). It seems like its only a matter of time before the 1.75m PB is broken.
In what had already been a long day one for all athletes yet at 7pm there was still one more event to go – 400m.
This was to be arguably Will’s best performance of the weekend. Going in the last heat of the day, Will was pitted against the quickest runners. Having made significant progress in his first (and only) 400m run of the season earlier in the year, Will was up for this one.
A slightly sluggish start meant Will had some work to do off the first bend but he maanged to claw some of the gap back down the back straight. Coming off the last bend, Will was on the shoulder of his nearest rival but entering the home straight is where Will showed his true class. He left the rest of the field and held his form well to run a huge PB of 49.49s (838 points), which was also the Qualifying standard for the English Schools Individual Finals in July. Will won the race by over 1s and ended day one lying in 6th place with 3238 points.
Day two was to be a testing day for all athletes. Five more events with tired bodies and minds would test all athletes.
The first event saw the 110m Hurdles and once again Will showed great characted after a poor start to run a PB and new club record time of 15.42s (799 points).
This was soon followed with the Discus where Will threw 25.68m (380 points). Slightly disappointing for Will who had hoped for better but knowing that it is still very early on in the season for him. The throw was enough for a PB.
Pole Vault was the third event of the day and it is always a tough one for the Men after already completing 7 events. This was to be Will’s first competitive experience of Pole Vault and expectations were low. Will managed to clear the first two heights and had reached his target. Not one for settling with just reaching targets, Will grew in confidence and attacked the next few heights, eventually clearing a PB height of 2.70m (286 points) before pulling out after one attempt at 2.80m to manage an injury.
Pole Vault had taken its toll on Will by time the Javelin came around. Will only managed 35.40m (376 points).
The final event of a long weekend is always the one that most of the Men dread – 1500m. Three and three quarter laps on tired legs is not one that many lads look forward to. Will ran a solid race in a time of 4:49.41 (622 points) to take his total up to 5701 points in his first Decathlon.
His points total was enough to claim the Northern bronze medal and take 7th overall in the national competition.
The benchmark has now been set by Will who will look forward to the English Schools Regional Combined Events Finals in Middlesbrough. He will be looking to beat his previous score to take him to his fourth English Schools Combined Events National Finals.