Category Archives: News

Ian Graham presented with Popplewell Trophy by Hampshire XC League

Ian Graham receiving Popplewell Trophy from the Hampshire Cross Country League
With another successful Cross Country League fixture fulfilled it was only right that Ian Graham be rewarded for the work he puts in

It came as a complete surprise to Ian Graham when he was presented with the coveted Popplewell Trophy at Kings Park after the first Hampshire Cross Country League fixture of the season had taken place.

The Popplewell Trophy is awarded each year to a person who has made an outstanding contribution to the league in some sort of way. It could be a runner, a team manager, a coach, an official or an organiser.

The trophy was named in honour of Maureen and John Popplewell who had worked tirelessly for 25 years to build the league into its present form.

This time it was Ian’s turn to receive some recognition for all the hard work he’s put in over the years to organise the Kings Park fixture.

Every single year, well, barring 2020 as that was the year that never happened, Ian has worked tirelessly to ensure the fixture goes ahead and that everything is in place and as it should be to facilitate the smooth running of the day’s proceedings.

There is a lot of the prep work he has to put in beforehand to ensure there are enough marshals and they’re all allocated their appropriate posts and that the course is marked out correctly. Then when it comes to the day of the event, he’s up and the crack of dawn to get everything ready before the first race begins.

It’s a lot to take on but Ian takes it all in his stride. He knows only too well what is required and that helps him ensure the fixture is successful year on year.

The hard work he puts in, along with that of all his helpers and marshals, all adds up to present Bournemouth AC in a very good light and as a very valuable player in the Hampshire Cross Country League game.

Having one fixture that they can consistently rely on to be one of the five every year is an absolute godsend for the league as they sometimes struggle to find suitable venues to hold the fixtures.

As well as the Popplewell Trophy, Ian was also presented with a few ales by Helen Ambrosen as a token of appreciation for everything he does. That meant he would at least have had something nice to drink when he finally got the chance to get home and put his feet up.

Ian often does get the credit he deserves for making this all happen so it was nice to see his hard work be highlighted in such a special way. A huge congratulations to Ian from everyone at Bournemouth AC for this very well earned reward.

Ian receives the 2021 Popplewell Trophy
It was a tremendous accolade for Ian to receive the Popplewell Trophy but one that was richly deserved

A Return to Coaching and Training at Kings Park Athletic Centre !!!


Finally today we had a meeting with the contractors and BCP onsite at KP. We had a tour around and I must say the facilities look truly superb.    
Whilst the work is virtually complete, there remain a few snags (top soil and grass seeding mainly) that need to be resolved before final handover to BCP next Wed (7th).
There will be ‘cordoned off’ areas when you return to protect the new grass seed etc, so please can you keep your training groups and athletes off these areas until well established. The infield particularly will be out of bounds initially, and therefore the outside throws area* will only be ready and available for throws practice (until the 17th at the earliest).
Therefore BCP are happy for us to resume BAC training as of; 
SATURDAY JULY 17TH First Competition Event YDL LAG
The near 6 month wait has been frustrating for all our coaching groups as well as our athletes, but I hope you’ll agree with me that the wait will finally be worth it!
A brand new improved track facility for us all to be proud of for future generations to come.
See you all back there soon
Kind regards,
Tim Ward
BAC Coaching Representative
UKA Coach Sprints Jumps

BAC Hosts The First Open Graded Sprints Meeting, 2020

Bournemouth Athletic Club hosted an Open Graded Sprints meeting on Sunday 23rd August at King’s Park Athletics Stadium. The meeting was an initiative to provide local athletes with an opportunity to compete without need to travel much. As such and to limit the number of competitors on site, the meeting was restricted to athlete members of Bournemouth AC, Poole AC, Poole Runners, Wimborne AC, Dorchester AC, Weymouth St Paul’s Harriers and AC, New Forest Juniors and Isle of Wight AC.

The events were seeded races and included the 100m, 200m, 300m and 400m and held under UKA Rules and EA Covid-19 Guidelines. As a result it was classed as an ‘official’ meeting with results compiled for Power of 10, the first in Bournemouth in 2020. There was also a wind gauge in operation.
As the first official outdoor sprints meeting in Bournemouth in 2020, it was clearly evident that athletes were delighted to be back on track! The athletes embraced the opportunity to put their hard training into practice and there was an undeniable buzz about the place.

The weather was kind as it stayed warm and dry but the wind was hitting the back straight in big surges. However, the longer sprint athletes did not appear to let this deter them and this is evident in some excellent performances being recorded.

The meeting kicked off with the most popular event of the day, the 100m sprints. The races were spread across 12 heats with over 60 athletes competing. The wind was in their favour with readings ranging from +1.3 to highs of +4.2.

The fastest time of the day was recorded by BAC’s International Long Jumper, James Lelliott who raced to victory in 11.0 (+1.6). He was followed by BAC’s Joseph Haywood and Muiris Egan in a time of 11.5 and 11.6 respectively.
They all looked on great form having put in the hard work and dedication during lock down. We are looking forward to seeing James in action again at the Müller British Athletics Championships on 4-5 September at the Manchester Regional Arena. The Championships will be broadcast live on Friday night on BBC2, 1800-2100 and Saturday afternoon on BBC1, 1315-1630.

The woman’s fastest time of the day was clocked by Amelia Verney (U17) in Heat 2 with an excellent time of 11.8 (+3.6) followed by Brooke Ironside’s (U20) impressive 12.0 (+2.4) in Heat 3.

Other notable performances by BAC athletes included a great show from our Junior athletes are as follows: Keon Dzuda (U17M), picture below in 11.8; Jolomi Nengite (U20M) 12.3; Adam Nicholass (SM) 12.4; Jazmin Cooke (U20W) in 12.8 (pictured above) Abi Phillips (U17W); Mia Wilkinson (U17W) 13.0; Amy Tonkyn (U15G) 13.6; (U15G) 13.9; William Launder (U13B) 14.0; Connor Bailey-Pearce (U13B) 14.6; Ewan Brown (U13B) 14.7; Bailey Guy (U15B) 15.0; and Ben Hutton (U13B) 15.0.

Over 40 athletes lined up on the top bend to compete in the 200m which extended to 10 Heats. The fastest time of the meeting was recorded by BAC’s Kevin Hodgson with an outstanding 22.4. Kevin is a sub-50 second 400m meter runner and has shown to be an excellent talent. We are looking forward to seeing more great performances from him in the future.

BAC dominated the field with a convincing lead in this event, taking the top four places. Muiris Egan stormed through the line in 23.1, followed closely by Joseph Haywood (U20M) in 23.2, and Toby Bailey-Pearce (U17M) in 23.3. Excellent performances considering this is the first competitive sprints meeting at Bournemouth in 2020.

Ashley Williams of NFJAC clocked the fastest time amongst the women competitors with a time of 24.0 in Heat 1. Having the men to chase down must have helped as she was close behind the man in front.

The next fastest was Amelia Verney doubling up in both the 100m and 200m metres with an impressive 24.5 in Heat 3. Brooke Ironside also doubled up and recorded a great time of 24.8 in Heat 2.
BAC had a good presence in the 200m and showed great form with some excellent performances throughout. Again this included a good number of our younger talented athletes which shows great prospects for the future of the club. Performances in order of times include: Keon Dzuda (U17M) 24.3; Abi Phillips BAC (U17W) 25.9; Joy Wright BAC (W45) 26.8; Trevor Elkins (M40) 28.2; William Launder (U13B) 28.2; Amy Tonkyn (U15G) 29.0; Amy Doble (U15G) 29.1; Connor Bailey-Pearce (U13B) 30.6; and Ben Hutton (U13B) 31.8.

The 300m was reserved for the U17s and took place across 4 Heats. There were some excellent performances from our three BAC athletes in Heat 1 as follows: Arief Mckenna (U15B) 40.9; 4 Abi Phillips (U17W) 42.7; Oscar Ewen-Matthews (U15B) 44.2. The fastest 300m time of the event was run by Charlie Brookes (U15B) of DAC in 38.1.
A great show of commitment and determination to continue training up to now.

The 400m took place across three Heats with Ciaran Dunnion (SM) of PAC clocking the top time of 50.2, followed closely by fellow team mate Josh Smith (U17M) of PAC in 50.5.

The women saw the fastest time of 58.3 run by local athlete Sarah Kearsey followed by Joy Wright’s (BAC) performance of 60.1. This places Joy in the top rankings in GB (V45) for both 200m and 400m.
Next through the line was Trevor Elkins (M40) in 64.0. Trevor is currently a BAC road runner but hopefully he’s developed a taste for the track so we can see more from him in the future.

In summary, it would be fair to say this was a superb day of Sprints at King’s Park! Organiser, Tim Hughes did a great job in coordinating the events in adherence to Covid guidance which required additional work and planning.

Tim and BAC would like to extend a huge thank you to every official and helper that made this event possible. This includes a proficient BAC Officials team alongside our friends from nearby clubs who worked efficiently in accordance with the standards and guidance.

A huge congratulations to all who took part in what was a fantastic and enthusiastic day.

Peter lock and Gary Wilkinson made a great team safely moving the blocks

Here are the official results: Bournemouth Sprints 23-Aug-20

Today, 30 August 2020, BAC are hosting a Throws Invitational Trial which has attracted an excellent field of talent.  We look forward to receiving the full results. 

On Tuesday 8 September BAC are hosting a Shot Invitational Meeting This will take place on Tuesday 8th September at 6pm (during the club training session) for BAC members with a focus on juniors.  For more information click here.

Tribute to Mike Wheeler

Mike Wheeler
14th February 1935 to 15th January 2020
Bournemouth Athletic Club Member and still our Senior Men’s 400m Record Holder.
Mike Wheeler won an Olympic Bronze Medal in the Olympic Games in Melbourne 1956. He was a member the 4 x 400m relay team representing Great Britain .Some of Mike’s preparation for “ the Games “ was done on our famous zig zags down the cliffs by the beach. Still used today by many club athletes looking for that extra physical challenge. At that time the zig zag was the only available winter surface and facility available in grass track days.
Mike’s performance was a stand out achievement by a member of Bournemouth Athletic Club. To this day his best Individual 400m time of 47.7 seconds, set in 1955/56, is still our club record. Our longest lasting club record enduring for 65 years, a significant portion of BAC’s 114 year existence.
He was an outstanding all round athlete who was also a fine Rugby player. Mike still competed some time later than 1956 but his domestic victory in the AAAs Championship in that year included the British Championship in 47.7sec. This was achieved on a cinder track at the White City and over the slightly longer distance of 440 yards.
He was a graceful sprinter whose athletic appearance was in the mould of the stars of “Chariots of Fire”. Fittingly Mike had also become the English Native Record Holder over his favourite distance at that time.
In 1970 he came back to competition at Kings Park as a master and raced the club’s current All English Schools Champion, Jimmy Lynch. This was an exceptional race with the then Junior National Champion racing the veteran Olympian. Mike just pipped Jim with his lean by a whisker as they crossed the finishing line in around 50 seconds. The battle down the straight has long stayed in my memory. Our Olympic Medallist was an outstanding sportsman in all respects. A true gentleman.
As Chief Coach, he organised the Thursday night training at the Athletic Centre in the sixties and into the beginning of the 70s. He led the Youth Service sponsored programme which engaged all the Bournemouth Athletic Club athletes and Youth Club members from across the town. He organised the Bournemouth Youth Service Town Championships each year.
Mike was a highly regarded P.E. teacher at Castle Court Private School before taking a more senior position. In this role he was very involved with the Wessex Schools Championships when it was held at Kings Park. This continues to this day as a high quality event in the private schools calendar.
His continued enthusiasm for all athletes and sportsman, especially those he had taught and coached, is a memorable feature in so many of our memories of this great athlete and fine man. Our very own Olympic Medallist Mike Wheeler. RIP.
Tribute written by – Paul Rees
Former BAC Athlete and an active coach from 1965 To the present day
President of Bournemouth Athletic Club in 1990/91.

Super SAL Saturday, Southampton

What an Super SAL Saturday.

Such a great bunch of people.

I was rather nervous about today. Southampton at home

Chelmsford top 3.  Thames Valley who are 6th.

To secure our league position next year we needed at least 2nd and a healthy bunch of match points.

Team orders were given on the bus.

Have fun or stay on the bus. It would be safe to same fun was had.

By the half way point of the match and to my horror we were joint 1st with Southampton.

Towards the end of the match Southampton pulled ahead. We finished with a magnificent 2nd place and 216 match points. A great great result…. no a huge result.

We will have to wait to hear the other results. But it looks good for BAC.

Thanks to you all for making this year such a wonderful experience. Jemma and I were chatting after the match and agree that you are a very unusual but lovely bunch of people.

I never thought of athletics as a team event until I experienced the SAL. What a team.

Thank you!

By Andrew Sheerin, Team Manager.

Nine BAC Athletes Selected to Compete at English Schools Finals

The athletes with their coaches Zac Kerin, Tim Ward and Paul Rees.

Congratulations To BAC Athletes Selected To Represent Their County At The 2019 English Schools’ Athletic Association Track And Field Finals.

Nine BAC athletes have been selected to represent Dorset or Hampshire Schools at Birmingham on Friday 12th July and Saturday 13th July at The ESAA Track and Field Finals.

The following eight athletes have been selected to represent Dorset Schools:-

Yasmin Bridet- 80 m Hurdles & Relay, Inter Girls.

Isabelle Franklin- Long Jump & Relay, Inter Girls.

Brooke Irionside- Long Jump & Relay, Inter Girls.

Abigail Phillips- 300m & Relay, Junior Girls.

Adam Phillips- Discus, Senior Boys.

Isabella Shepherd- Hammer, Senior Girls.

Leah Sullivan- Long Jump & Relay, Junior Girls.

Mia Wilkinson- 75m Hurdles & Relay, Junior Girls.

Lana Blake has been selected to represent Hampshire Schools at  Long Jump & Relay, Inter Girls.

Seven of the Athletes. Hopefully more photos including Bridget Bidet & Adam Phillips will follow.

The English Schools Athletics Track & Field Competition and Finals first took place in 1925 and has continued every year since except during the Second World War. It is the fourth biggest sports completion in the world and the biggest held over two days.

There are three categories of counties in the competition. The biggest counties, including Hampshire, (Category A) with a secondary school population of over 100,000 are allowed to select up to sixty athletes. Those with a population of between 60,000 and 100,000 (Category B) are allocated a lower number. Dorset, with a population below 60,000 (Category C) are now allowed to select up to 32 athletes.  To be selected an athlete normally has to reach at least a specific “English Standard” time or distance based on their age group, gender and event.

The Junior Age Group is for under 15, Inter Age Group is for under 17 & Senior Age Group is for under 19.

BAC hope the athletes, parents, relatives and coaches enjoy the trip to Birmingham. Hopefully the athletes can stay injury free and rise to the challenge of the size and intensity of the event. Judging is of the highest order. Any minor error, normally going un-noticed, is sure to be picked up at this event, so please check all the rules and regulations for whatever event you are participating in.

By William Kearsey