Michael just misses medal

Sunderland Harrier Michael Wilson.
Sunderland Harrier Michael Wilson.
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SUNDERLAND Harrier Michael Wilson faced a tough weekend to qualify for the England Athletics Under-20 800m final at Bedford.

It all started on Saturday when he qualified for the semi-finals after finishing fourth in his heat (1min 53.60sec).

Then, just hours later, he was on the start line again for the semi-final where he recorded 1.54.83 in fifth to qualify for the final as a fastest loser.

Yesterday, it was finals day and, in a close-run race, the Seaham athlete was pipped for fourth, finishing sixth in a personal best of 1.52.01.

Naturally, Wilson was delighted with his performance, but disappointed in missing out on a medal.

He said: “It was a very close race, but I have to be pleased.

“Now I am looking forward to the English Schools’ Championships where I have to target a medal.

Next Monday, he will compete in the British Milers’ Club 800m at Durham, where he is likely to take on Crook’s Markim Lonsdale, the fastest 15-year-old in the UK (1.52.0). Malcolm Hassan’s Sunderland Harriers’ Under-20 club record of 1.50.7, from 2001, could come under threat.

H In the North East Grand Prix at Gateshead Stadium, Houghton Harriers had a number of young athletes putting in sterling performances.

Under-17 Jake Philpott won the 100m (11.8sec) and was second in the 200m in a personal best of 24.0.

There was another PB from Josh Peel in the junior men’s javelin (41.53), junior woman Laura Fenwick scooped a sprint double (13.8 and 28.7) and there were second places in the 1500m for under-13 Lillie Hardie (5.16.2) and under-17 Alex Brown (4.47.8).

Sunderland Harrier Mollie Gardiner was runner-up in the under-15 100m (13.6).

Nathan Reed was fourth in the one mile (4.20.2) behind guest winner Jonathan Cooke (Woodford Green), who recorded 4.11.0, and the Morpeth pair of Nick Swinburn (4.12.2) and Nick Swinburn (4.16.8).

H Sunderland Harrier George Harden pulled off a double in the North East Masters track and field league at Monkton. He won the over-50 one mile (5.08) and 400m (61.8). Peter Richardson won the over-60 one mile (5.50.1).

Houghton Harrier Steve Todner was first in the over-60 400m (65.0) and clubmate Gillian Tomlinson won the over-45 200m (32.31) and 400m (75.0).

H Alistair Brownlee was crowned European triathlon champion for a third time in Kitzbuhel, winning by 27 seconds from Russia’s Dmitry Polyanskiy.