On Saturday 12 September 2015, eleven NVH athletes represented their county, Lincolnshire in an Inter-counties Match at Cudworth (Barnsley) on a typical Yorkshire day, strong gusty winds, frequent rain showers and a great view of the Yorkshire Valleys. Nene Valley athletes made up about one quarter of the Lincolnshire team which was against six strong counties. The match was between Warwickshire, Yorkshire, Leicestershire and Rutland, Nottinghamshire, Derbyshire and Humberside, some of the strongest counties.
Hannah Knight was making her Lincolnshire County team debut and sat on the under 13 girls 800m race leader throughout the first lap. As the race hotted up she held on well to finish in a personal best time of 2:38.6. Another county debutant was Emily Davis who ran both the 200m and also recorded a personal best with her time of 29.6s. Although a tough race she held her own and then led out the 4x100m relay team setting them up for a good finish.
Harry Burchnall was also competing in the 800m against the under 15 boys. Harry stormed ahead over the first 400m and led the way until the final bend where he was caught by the eventual winner. Harry still recorded a good personal best time of 2:13.1 almost a second off his previous best performance. he followed this up with a strong 300m run of 41.8s marginally off his personal best but a great effort after the 800m. Paula Naylor found the weather and competition tough as she completed her 800m in a time of 2:46.8.
One of the performances of the day came from William Hughes. His 200m leg of the medley relay had the crowd from all counties commenting. The 100m runner fumbled the change over, William literally turned round and took the baton from him. When he faced the correct direction the team were some 5 meters behind the field. not only did he catch them within 50m, he passed over to NVH team mate, Nathan Pickering almost 20 meters ahead. Nathan was up against the English Schools under 15 boys 300m champion and held the gap over the same distance allowing the team to eventually win the relay by over 50m.
Nathan had earlier in the day competed in the under 15 boys 300m race. On Friday evening, Nathan had been scoring a brace for Leicester City and then ran a personal best 39.8 showing improved fitness and holding on behind the English School Champion.
William Hughes dominated the sprints, as he has been all season with a good 11.7s in the 100m after a slow start and 23.3s to destroy the 200m field leading into the home straight and then pulling away from the rest. Charles, his twin also dominated the competition in the field scoring well in the shot putt with 12.43m, 28.86m in the discus and 37.81m in the javelin.
Olivia Thompson and Jasmine Allen both found the under 15 girls long jump tough going. An uphill run up with string side wins made getting the jumps in difficult and the girls recorded 4.55m and 4.67m respectively. Olivia had to leave the long jump as soon as she had made her third attempt to run a 100m race of 14.0s. Jasmine had a bit longer to relax after her frustrations in the long jump and ran into a strong head wind round the bend of the 200m. She dug deep and dominated the B string race winning by a clear 2 seconds. Her time of 27.0 was good in the conditions and was only beaten by Amy Hunt who took the under 15 girls award for the best performance of the day. Amy a good athlete who is strongly tipped to be an international prospect for the future.
Molly Shaw threw the javelin 20.60m in her under 15 girls javelin and Luke Taylor recorded a distance of 32.01 in the male version. Luke also stepped in to help the team throwing the shot putt alongside Charles Hughes recording 7.27m.
Despite the great effort shown the county team finished 6th showing the strength of the other counties in the competition which originated almost 20 years ago out of a wish to provide a higher level of competition for the young athletes.