IT’s been a busy few days for Dyfed Secondary School Children, with two big events having taken place in the space of four days this week.
Last Friday (June 15) and Saturday (June 16) saw the Dyfed Schools Athletics Championships return to the Leisure Centre after a year gap, following the cancelation of nearly all events in 2017 because of the poor weather. Those finishing in the top places at their area championships (Brianne, Pembrokeshire, Llanelli and Ceredigion) during May had qualified to compete in Carmarthen.
It saw approximately 350 athletes taking the spotlight and several hundred parents and teachers attend throughout the weekend to support the young athletes. While there were plenty of club runners from Pembrokeshire, Carmarthen, Llanelli and Swansea present, it was also the opportunity for the less experienced schoolchildren to take part in a major competition.
The action got underway on Friday evening where the first six events of the 2018 championships were completed ahead of the big day. These included the long hurdles, 1000m Walk, where the first record was broken and 3000m along with sole competitors in the Pole Vault and Hammer on the field.
Around 14 hours later, all roads from Pembrokeshire, Carmarthenshire and Ceredigion led to the Carmarthen facility early on Saturday morning with the first set of events beginning at 10.00am and finishing just after 5pm.
It was also great to be able to host a 100m wheelchair race for three girls from STP and Penweddig. The trio were encouraged by the crowd throughout and organisers were thrilled to give the year 7 girls an opportunity to get involved in the day’s activities.
During the afternoon, a special presentation was made in the centre of the track to event organiser and Dyfed Schools AA secretary Dr Hedydd Davies for his tireless work over the last 20 plus years to Dyfed Schools and beyond.
Dyfed Schools records were broken this year by: Amy White (Year 8 Girls 1000m 5.48.9); Alicia Samuel (Senior Girls 100m 12.2); Cordelia Walker (Year 7 Girls Javelin 30.40m) and Frank Morgan (Year 8 Boys 1500m 4.27.7) The Frank Davies Memorial Award for best performance went to Samuel and Morgan for their record-breaking performances.
The Dyfed Schools team for the Welsh Schools National Track and Field Championships at Cardiff, on July 7, was chosen straight after the championships with letters sent out to the team and reserves selected.
Four days later on Wednesday, June 20, many of the pupils were back in Johnstown, this time for the Dyfed Secondary Schools NASUWT Cup Final which came around rapidly. After four qualifying matches at four venues, it all came down to one finals day in Carmarthen featuring a total of thirty-two teams.
The event programme for under 14 and under 16 age groups was over three hours. The final relay concluded the day which also saw the hurdles, 100m, 200m, 300m, 800m and 1500m on the track. While on the field, the javelin, shot, long jump, high jump, triple jump and discus was contested.
Several categories came down to the last few races to decide who would take the honours so everything was to play for up to the very last few metres. Schools from Queen Elizabeth, Bro Myrddin, Dyffryn Taf, Dyffryn Aman, Bro Dinefwr, Maes Y Gwendraeth, STP, Preseli, Greenhill, Penglais, Aberaeron, Bro Pedr, Henry Richard, Bryngwyn, Strade, Coedcae and St John Lloyd were all top 2 team finishers in their respective matches earlier on and as a result, travelled from all three counties to take part in this midweek fixture.
Once the races were over, the presentations of winners and runners-up were announced by Hedydd Davies. The below schools will represent the District at the Welsh Schools NASUWT Cymru Wales Cup & Plate Finals at Brecon on Wednesday, July 11.
Other schools from the other seven districts – Afan Nedd Tawe, Cardiff & Vale, Eryri, Glamorgan Valleys, Powys, South East Wales and North East Wales will provide opponents in an expected high standard competition.
Junior Boys: Dyffryn Taf (Cup); Y Preseli (Plate) Junior Girls: Y Preseli (Cup); Queen Elizabeth (Plate) Middle Boys: Bro Myrddin (Cup); Sir Thomas Picton (Plate) Middle Girls: Queen Elizabeth (Cup); Sir Thomas Picton (Plate)
More signings as Cwm build squad
FOLLOWING on from announcing their three new signings last week Cwmamman United have announced a further six this week.
Nathan Davies, who has captained the Carmarthenshire League Select side, joins from Bwlch Rangers while Rob Morgans joins having played with Haverfordwest County and Goodwick United previously.
They also announced the signing of four tremendously talented young players in Oliver Diamond, Korey Palmer, Stevie Evans and Joe Lewis.
“We are really pleased to have these boys on board as we are not only strengthening our first team squad with some really talented players ” said Ryan Stephens, First Team Manager, “but we are also building for the future.”
Ammanford romp to friendly win
AMMANFORD romped away in a goal fest in this pre season friendly beating their plucky opponents Pontarddulais by ten goals to nil on Friday (Jul 12).
Ammanford Manager Gruffydd Harrison will be pleased with his teams workout and even more excited with his forward line finishing prowess.
There were hat tricks for Gavin Jones who showed excellent pace and new signing Tristan Jenkins along with goals from Lee Trundle, Bruno Forkouh, Mathew Fisher and Craig Frater.
Ammanford have another friendly this Friday (Jul 19) when they take on Ynysygerwn.
After that they travel to Pontardawe Town on Tuesday (Jul 23) before a trip to Welsh Premier League neighbours Carmarthen Town on Saturday (Jul 27).
Carmarthenshire cyclist heading to Mont Blanc
WITH THE TOUR DE FRANCE in full swing and the World’s best doing battle against each other, there is another big cycling event taking place within the French Alps.
The Tour du Mont Blanc claims to be the Worlds toughest road cycling event and Llangadog based cyclist, Matthew Page will be lining up and attempting to complete the arduous route.
The event is a non-stop, circumnavigation around the alpine peak of Mont Blanc, starting in France alpine resort of Les Saisies and heads through Switzerland and Italy before returning to finish back in Les Saisies.
Covering a total of 330km (205 miles) with 8300 vertical metres (27,300 feet) of climbing it is roughly the equivalent to tackling two of the toughest Tour de France stages, back to back without stopping and takes in well known alpine passes including the Grand Saint Bernard, Petit Saint Bernard, Cormet de Roseland and Col de la Forclaz.
Matthew is a former professional Mountain Biker, who competed internationally and specialised in 24hr solo competitions and also Carmarthenshire Sports Personality winner. Now a cycle event organiser and cycling media journalist he organises major off-road events within the county including Battle on the Beach, Gritfest and in November 2019 will be organising a round of the British Cycling cyclocross national series within Pembrey Country Park.
With less than 50% of starters likely to finish, Matthew is understandably apprehensive about the challenge: “This will undoubtedly be one of the hardest days I will ever encounter on the bike and despite having done 24hr events previously, the extra challenges the Tour du Mont Blanc brings, including lack of a support crew, route navigation, logistics and uncertain weather especially at higher altitudes. The event has been a major focus for me this year and I am looking forward to the challenge”.
The event takes place on Saturday July 20, with the fastest riders expected to finish in under 12 hours.
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