Five youngsters do Bridlington proud at national biathlon championships

More pictures in this week's Free Press
More pictures in this week's Free Press

Five children from the Bridlington area competed in the British Biathlon Championships in Birmingham.

All five children had earned their passage through to the finals by qualifying from the county Championships which were held in York.

Qualification was tough, with only the top six from each county or region being given automatic places through to the nationals in Solihull.

The five local children who managed to achieve this included Harry Pearson of Martongate School in the under 11s, and Abbie Wilson of Driffield Primary in the under 10s, who both fought hard take to take sixth spot in their age groups.

Blossom Green of Hilderthorpe Primary qualified in fourth alongside her older brother Taylor and Harvey Roberts in the under 12s.

They had both finished inside the top three at York which not only sent them through to this year’s National finals at Birmingham, but also guaranteed them a spot at next year’s schools finals which will be held at the Olympic Park, with the swim taking place at the aquatics centre.

In the run up to the finals all of the children worked hard on both disciplines of a biathlon, which are swimming and running.

Roberts competed in the local schools cross country championships taking first place and was involved with the along with the Yorkshire Tettrathlon (swimming, running, shooting and fencing) competition where he came third.

In this time, he also represented his swimming club numerous times, always giving 100% effort.

Taylor Green finished second in the Yorkshire Tettrathlon and won the Driffield Swimming Club championships freestyle, backstroke, breaststroke and butterfly races.

For Blossom Green, Wilson and Pearson the national finals in Birmingham was their first time competing at such a high level, with competitors representing all areas of England, Scotland and Wales.

Pearson finished 54th, Wilson took 62nd, which included a new personal best time in the run, and Blossom Green was 36th overall, having finished second in her running heat, taking 24 seconds off the time she had qualified with at York.

Taylor Green and Roberts were up competing more towards the business end, and finished 24th and 19th, with only a few points keeping both boys from top 10 positions.

Only fractions of a second separated them from either the people in front of them to their nearest rival behind.

But it was as a team representing Yorkshire where they truly stood out.

The competition was fierce, especially in the running heats where sharp elbows were needed with a lot of argy-bargy going on during each race.

With 14 in each heat, track space was tight and runners had to continuously jostle for position.

Green and Roberts both finished inside the top five of their heats, with Roberts setting himself a new 800m PB.

The swim was a slightly tamer affair, and Green finished third and Roberts sixth in their races.

Alongside team-mate Conor Dougall, they claimed the silver medal position for Yorkshire.

The competition was extremely close and the Yorkshire team only just missed out on the gold medal position by a few points.

From the regional qualifiers to British finals, there were over 300 competitors in each of the quintet’s age groups which puts in to perspective the magnitude of their achievements.

Taylor Green, who is 11, attends Bridlington School and trains and competes for Yorkshire Pentathlon Club, Driffield Swimming Club and Kingston upon Hull Athletics Club.

Roberts is also 11 and attends Burlington Primary and trains and competes for Yorkshire Pentathlon Club, Driffield Swimming Club and Bridlington Road Runners.