Making quite a name for himself at county level, Bournemouth AC Under 13 sensation Connor Grocott has been on fire so far this year. With a Hampshire County Cross Country Championship winner’s medal to his name as well as being crowned Dorset Schools’ Cross Country Champion, it had been a very successful start to the year for Connor.
Hoping to continue in that vain, Connor was competing in the Hampshire Athletics Multi-Events Championships where the participants battle it out over five events to score points which will then be added together to form an overall cumulative total. Basically, it was a Pentathlon, featuring an 800m, a Long Jump, a High Jump, a 75m Hurdles and a Shot Put.
Being such a strong runner, the track events weren’t likely to pose too much of a problem for him. To he would have to prove he was very multi-talented to excel in the field events as well.
The competition was held at the Mountabatten Centre in Portsmouth and Connor was squaring off against six Under 13 Boys from Winchester & District and one from Aldershot, Farnham & District. With those clubs in the fray, you always know you’re going to need to be at the top of your game.
It would be fair to say that Connor doesn’t have a lot of bulk on him, so the Shot Put was always going to be a tricky event. His build is much more akin to running but despite that, he managed to seal second place in the event with a throw of 7.22 metres. The winner of that event was Jackson Purdie of Winchester & District with a throw of 7.38.
When it came to the 75m Hurdles though, being such a talented runner put the ball more into Connor’s court and he made count, reversing the result from the Shot Put and picking up the win ahead of Jackson Purdie. Connor’s time was 14.2 seconds which edged him ahead of Jackson by one second. That meant it was tight at the top, with Jackson on 702 points and Connor on 700.
In the High Jump, Connor didn’t quite hit the heights he’d managed a couple of times the previous year but still managed a leap of 1.27 metres which put him in third place. Crucially though, he’d finished ahead of Jackson Purdie who was fourth, so he’d gained points over his main rival.
Leo Davies-Pratt of Winchester & District was the winner with a jump of 1.33 and Tom Pate, also of Winchester & District took 2nd with a jump of 1.30 metres. That put Connor comfortably into the lead with 931 points to Jackson’s 896.
Only one of his opponents managed to top Connor’s leap of 4.20 in the Long Jump. That was Tom Pate who recorded his first event win in 4.21. That moved Connor even further clear of Jackson Purdie who could only manage fourth. Leo Davies-Pratt was third with 4.15.
No one could contend with Connor in the 800m as he blasted round in a terrific time of 2:28.8. That gave him a six second advantage over Leo Davies-Pratt who was second in 2:35.0. Tom Pate took third in 2:35.2 and Jackson Purdie was fourth in 2:49.4.
In terms of the overall points totals, Connor had managed a total of 1507 and that was enough to seal a magnificent victory for him. Tom Pate was second on 1327 points with Leo Davies-Pratt taking third in 1317. Jackson Purdie’s challenge faded as he had be content with fourth place in the end with a score of 1224.
Connor’s sister Skye was also competing in the Multi-Events Championships for the Under 13 Girls and she recorded a 1.03 for the High Jump before completing the 70m Hurdles in 16.8 seconds. In the Long Jump, she managed 2.62 metres and she registered a throw of 3.95 metres in the Shot Put.
Getting through the 800m race in 3:20.1, she wracked up a total of 774 points, putting her in eighth position. There was also a Family Trophy which two related athletes could qualify for, meaning their scores would be combined together. Connor and Skye came out on top in that with a total of 2281 and that was enough to put them ahead of Peter and Jack Sansome of Winchester & District who scored 2202.
It was a fabulous day for the Grocotts and a very successful one from Connor’s perspective. As well as picking up the Family Trophy, he could now call himself the Hampshire Multi-Event County Champion and that was another result to be extremely proud of for him. If he continues to perform like this, it won’t be long before the Grocott’s need a bigger trophy cabinet!