Greenock Glenpark Harriers under 13 girls surpassed their expectations when competing in the National Relay Championships at the Emirates Arena. Prior to their opening 4x200m heat they only gave themselves a slim outside chance of making it through to the semi-finals.
The girls, predominately endurance athletes and no prior relay experience, a fastest loser spot was the best the girls had hoped for.
In the first round heats the diminutive Maria McCabe led the quartet out on the opening leg, and although back in 4th and out of the automatic qualifying positions Maria was still within touching distance of the teams in front.
A slick exchange of the baton and an explosive start from Sophie McGinty saw the Harriers surge into 2nd place by the time she had rounded the first bend, Sophie then continued to extend the lead over the 3rd placed athlete.
There was another faultless baton switch to Erin Mceleny on the 3rd leg, who’s powerful running put more daylight between the chasing pack, before passing onto Summer Taggart. With the pressure now off, Summer cruised around the 200m track recording the teams fastest time and an automatic place in the semi-final.
The semi-final saw a switch in the team format, with Maria stepping aside to make way for Islay Newsome. And it was another flawless performance from the girls, although not making it through to that elusive final, a 4th place finish, and all 5 girls recording personal bests on the day, it was highly successful; with the bonus of seeing the Harriers Men’s team win Silver, and also watch trackside an exciting 800m race as Jemma Reekie outsprinted Laura Muir to set a new British record.
Results: Heats – 2nd Place (Maria McCabe; Sophie McGinty; Erin McEleny, Summer Taggart) 2:14.10
Semi-Final – 4th Place: (Summer Taggart; Sophie McGinty; Erin McEleny; Islay Newsome) 2:16.80