Luton Athletic Club, sponsored by Luton Rotary Club, finished a very close third in their home Southern Athletics League match at Stockwood Park at the weekend.
Both the men’s and women’s teams performed brilliantly with some exceptional results, particularly in the throws as Luton finished on 174.5pts, just behind Stevenage & North Herts (181pts), with London Heathside on 196.5 to triumph.
The tussle between Luton and Cambridge & Coleridge was a closely-fought one with Luton winning by a mere 1 1/2 points.
For the men, the throwers were in great form, winning seven out of eight events and finishing second in the other.
Dave Burrell won the A string hammer (39.57m), shot (11.49m) and discus (34.02m) accumulating 12 points, as he was well backed up in the B string by Geoff Grinsted, who won the hammer (20.66m) and discus (27.44m), plus a second in the shot (9.21m).
There was also a superb double win in the javelin for Matt Hill (50.70m) and Harry McBrearty (45.44m).
On the track, Joe Hubbock finished third in the A 100m (11.5secs) and 200m (23.9secs), while also winning the B string 400m in 52.8secs.
Aderian Bright won the B 200m in 23.7secs and was second in the B high jump (1.63m) and A long jump (6.44m), with Jamie Baughan second in the A high jump (1.88m).
There was a welcome return for Ezra Leonce who finished second in the B long jump (5.81m) and third in the A triple jump (12.64m), as Romero Armani Dujon won the B triple jump with 11.12m.
Rhys Lewis came second in the A 400m race in 50.5secs and the 1,500m (4:13.3mins) with new recruit Ben Winfield also second in the B race (4:22.7mins).
In the 800m, Seyi Obembe finished third in 2:03.2mins and Lee Carey was fourth in the B race with 2:51.5mins.
Ryan Healy was third in the B 100m race (12.4secs). Tyriq Lafeuille was second in the A 400m hurdles in 64.1secs and Zaheer Mohammed was fourth in the B race in 89.9secs, also clocking 48.1secs for fourth in the 110m hurdles.
In the 3,000m steeplechase, A race runner Shane Jay was forced to drop out with an injury, leaving club chairman, Paul Brooks, the only competitor, as he was fourth in 16:45.3mins.
Brooks also finished fourth in the B 3,000m (14:54.6mins) with Mark Pedder third in the A race in 10:52.0mins.
The Ladies started the day with the hammer as Suzanna Wise (41.38m) triumphed with Natalie Kimble second in the B event with 16.47m.
Wise was also second in the pole vault, with a height of 1m, while Kimble followed this with second in the shot (8.26m) as Wise came second in the B event (7.69m).
In the discus, Wise was first in the A event (31.95m) and Jo Blair was first in the B event (27.29m).
In her main event, the javelin, Blair, the current British Champion, threw well to easily win with 47.12m, as Wise was third in the B event with 18.34m.
In the long jump, Jazmine Barnett finished fourth (4.74m) and Natasha Hayman was third in the B event (4.14m).
Hayman went on to take third in the B high jump (1.35m) with Rebecca Hawtin also third in the A event (1.60m).
There was a double win for Shanara Hibbert and Jazmine Barnett in the triple jump, with Hibbert jumping a massive 12.28m and Barnett 10.62m in the B event.
Hibbert went on to finish second in the A 100m in 13.1secs with Aleah Givans-Flynn a brave fourth in the B event in 14.3secs having fallen heavily in the 400m hurdles.
Anna Bright started a busy day with a superb win in the 400m hurdles in 66.9secs, closely followed by a win in the 400m in 60.5secs with Natasha Hayman second in the B race in 70.7secs.
Bright then went on to take second in the 200m in 27.3secs, before completing both relays, while Aeah Givans-Flynn was fourth in the B 200m race with 30.2secs.
Also on the track, Claire McMahon-Adie was third in the 5,000m in 18:05.3mins, as was Georgia Nunn in the 800m in 2:31.5mins.
McMahon- Adie then went on to finish third in the 1,500m in 5:10.9mins, with new recruit, Harriet Bell, starting with third in the B 1,500m in 5:33.7mins.
She also went on to finish a superb second in the 1,500m steeplechase in 6:10.4mins, with Wise fourth in the B event (8:09.5mins).
Before going into the relays Luton were in second place, 1.5pts ahead of Stevenage and 5.5pts ahead of Cambridge.
In the 4x100m relays, the women’s team of Bright, Zoe Palmer, Nunn and Givans-Flynn came third (56.2secs) as the men’s team of Baughan, Leonce, Bright and Dan Bottesch finished fourth (47.1secs).
Stevenage won both relays and moved into second, with Luton in third only 3.5pts ahead of Cambridge.
A double win for Cambridge in the women’s 1,500m steeplechase saw them move into third, half a point ahead of Luton, ensuring a nail biting finish with just the 4x400m relays to go.
In an exciting finale, the quartet of Blair, Nunn, Bright, and Hayman fought hard to hang on to third place just ahead of Cambridge in the women’s 4x400m relay in 4:37.5mins.
The men’s 4x400m relay the team of Lewis, Winfield, Obembe and Dujon finished second in 3:43.1mins, again ahead of Cambridge, giving third place to Luton.
The next match is on August 20 at Hemel Hempstead.