Cardiff athletes had plenty to celebrate at the Welsh Cross Country Championships held at St Fagans, Cardiff today, with four team championships and four individual titles.
Jake Heyward (pictured) continued his domination of the under 13 boys' age group with a convincing win by 22 seconds from the second placer. Rebecca Evans took the under 17 women's title, Gwenno Brown the under 23 women's and Jorge Thomas was the first senior man home but had to be content with the silver medal as Dewi Griffiths (under 23) was actually the first in the combined race.
Meanwhile, in Birmingham, Joe Thomas smashed his indoor personal best once again to take fourth place in a world class international 800m race and move to seventh in the latest world rankings with 1:46.35, a new Welsh record.
With the Welsh Cross Country Championships taking place in Cardiff tomorrow, Saturday 18th February, there were some encouraging performances at the fourth Gwent League fixture of the season, held at Brecon last Saturday 11th February.
Pride of place went to Cardiff's former club captain Debbie Rees (apologies for the quality of the picture) whose convincing win in the senior women's race underlined her good form.
Jake Heyward (under 13 boys) continued his winning streak and John Cove and Ciaran Lewis were first and second in the under 15 boys' race.
At the UK Indoor Championships and World Championship Trials, held in Sheffield today, 12th February, Cardiff's Joe Thomas dominated the men's 800m to win in another indoor personal best time of 1:47.26; which is also a stadium record.
Joe led from the gun and, at the bell, accelerated away from the field to win by 25 or more metres and thus confirmed his place in the British team for the World Indoor Chamnpionships to be held in Istanbul, Turkey, in March.
Joe's time places him equal 9th on the latest world rankings and his run of superb form indicates a lot more to come.
At the second phase of Welsh Indoor Championships held at NIAC, Cardiff, last Sunday, 5th February, Cardiff athletes collected a further 23 medals.
Gold medals went to Elliot Slade (pictured) who had a convincing win in the under 20 men's 1500m, Jamaul Whyte (U20 200m), Lewis Newton (U20 Pole Vault), Matthew Field (U20 Shot Put), Megan O'Sullivan (U20 women's Triple Jump).
Olivia Evans won the U17 women's Pole Vault with a personal best of 3.11m.
It's hard to believe but Paul Darney celebrated his 70th (yes, 70th) birthday yesterday, 6th February.
Lauren Regan had organised a cake and gift and Paul was caught by surprise with a burst of "Happy Birthday" when he returned to the club room after a coaching session.
Paul has been ever present as an athlete and coach since he joined Birchgrove Harriers as a young boy.
The fourth round of the 2011-12 Gwent League will be held in Brecon on Saturday, 11th February and the Welsh Championships will be held in Cardiff a week later on Saturday 18th.
If you are intending to run in either (or, hopefully, both) of these fixtures you should let one of the team managers know as soon as possible.
Joe Thomas maintained his good form and improved his indoor 800m time again with 1:47.28 in the Vienna Indoor Classic last night. Joe won his race comfortably but, competing in a separate race at the same venue, Austrian Andreas Rapatz was slightly faster with 1:47.24.
Rapatz' time took him to fourth spot on the latest world indoor rankings with Joe now in fifth.
Also in Vienna were Cardiff's promising 17 year old sprinter Sam Gordon (pictured), Elliot Slade and Zara George.
Sam made it through to the final of the 60m where he recorded a personal best time of 7.01 sec. Elliot and Zara also set personal best indoor times of 1:52.96 (800m) and 24.83 (200m) respectively.