Rebecca Mersh Achieves World Youth Qualifying Time.

rebecca_mersh (1)Rebecca MeshRebecca Mersh’s goal of walking at the World Youth Games in Marrakech took great strides forward when she took competed in an event arranged especially to give the top U18 walkers the opportunity to better the tough 24.10 qualifying mark.
When it became apparent that there were no 5,000m track walks before the selection date City of Sheffield AC’s John Howley offered to organise a track event as part of the annual Jeff Ford Memorial Walks.
Rebecca’s fellow international Johanna Jackson agreed to come down from Redcar to help her keep a constant fast pace going throughout the twelve and a half laps of the track. With 2,000m to go the pair were 8 seconds adrift of the required time but they picked up the pace from 1.57 second laps to 1.54’s in the last 4 laps and Rebecca crossed the line 4 secs inside the required time standard with Johanna 6 seconds ahead.
Other races held later in the afternoon around the usual circuits of paths around Don Valley saw Danya Sarayreh win the U13 2km in 11.15 just 2 seconds outside her best time despite have to walk most of the race unpressured by the opposition.
The third City of Sheffield victory came from national U15 Girls champion Kathryn Granger whose sharp 15.07 for 3km took her to seventh place in the all time U15 rankings. Further down the field Mark Pratt got closer to the 16 min Barrier with 16.19 and Natalie Myers produced her second fast time of 16.37.