27 August 2016. Laura Muir put the disappointment of the Olympic Games behind her to win the IAAF Diamond League 1500 metres at Paris in a sensational new Scottish record, British record, Commonwealth record and world leading mark of 3:55.22, taking over two seconds off her recent record of 3:57.49.
Laura surprised herself : "The race was amazing, I couldn't believe the time, especially since I didn't do one track session since Rio. I just went with the pacemaker and I knew I had to dig in and hold on during the 3rd lap. I'll be in Zurich next week to finish my season."
Behind her trailed Olympic gold medallist Faith Kipyegon 3:56.72 and 5th placed Sifan Hassan 3:57.13, with Jennifer Simpson (3rd at the Olympics) and Shannon Rowbury (4th) trailing Laura tonight in 6th and 4th.
This year's world leading mark before this had been Kipyegon's 3:56.41 - Laura taking more than a second off that! Her progression in recent years has been remarkable - in 2011, she was the 4th ranked under-20 in Scotland with 4:38.90. Since then her progression reads:
2012 - 4:17.81, 2013 - 4:07.76, 2014 - 4:00.07, 2015 - 3:58.66, 2016 - 3:55.22.
21 August 2016. This has been an outstanding Olympic Games for Scottish athletics, from the moment that the team was announced with 15 Scottish athletes, to the superb performances in the final session of these Rio Games.
Into the small hours back home, we watched Lynsey Sharp come home in 6th place breaking her own Scottish record in the biggest arena of all; we saw Andy Butchart run the race of his life, competitive at the very top level, breaking his own Scottish record as he placed 7th, then 4th, then back to 6th as the disqualifications and appeals sorted themselves. Then came Eilidh Doyle, who had fought her way through the 3 rounds of the 400 metres hurdles, returning to lead off a GB quartet to a bronze medal.
This was Eilidh’s 11th medal in major championships, her achievements reading like this:
Commonwealth Games – Silver medal 400 metres hurdles, 2010
European Indoor Championships – Gold medal 4 x 400 metres, 2013
European Indoor Championships – Silver medal 400 metres, 2013
World Championships – Bronze medal 4 x 400 metres, 2013
World Indoor Championships – Bronze medal 4 x 400 metres, 2014
Commonwealth Games – Silver medal 400 metres hurdles, 2014
European Championships – Gold medal 400 metres hurdles, 2014
European Championships – Bronze medal 4 x 400 metres, 2014
World Championships – Bronze medal 4 x 400 metres, 2015
European Championships – Gold medal 4 x 400 metres, 2016
Olympic Games – Bronze medal 4 x 400 metres, 2016
She joins Yvonne Murray as the most be-medalled Scottish athlete, Yvonne winning 3 gold, 3 silver and 5 bronze.
Lynsey Sharp ran an impressive qualifying sequence to reach the final. The clear favourite, Caster Semenya, took the title by a wide margin in 1:55.28, but the battle for the medals saw national records or PBs for those in 3rd to 6th place. Lynsey came home in 6th, peaking at the right time, with a new Scottish record of 1:57.69, the third time she has lowered the record in the last 2 years.
Andrew Butchart has had an exceptional season and his progress has been remarkable. In 2013, he was running over 15 minutes for the 5000 but lowered that the next year to 13:58.05. In 2015, that PB came down to 13:29.49, and this year he bettered Nat Muir’s long-standing Scottish record with his run of 13:13.30 at Hengelo, before reducing that even further to 13:08.61 last night.
At the 2012 Olympics, Scotland had 5 representatives. A sign of how far we have progressed is that this time, leaving aside the straight finals, we have had 5 athletes qualifying for individual finals. That has never been achieved by Scottish athletes in Olympic history. All performed admirably. As well as the three mentioned above, Laura Muir and Eilish McColgan gave us moments to be proud of. As we wait for today’s marathon, we should savour this moment.
8 August 2016. The weekend saw the final round of the British Leagues and there was good and bad news for the Scottish clubs.
Edinburgh AC has done excellently to place 4th in the women's premiership and their final outing saw a close finish with the club edged into 6th. Susan McKelvie was their only winner but the Scottish highlight of the meeting came from Zoey Clark. Returning from injury, she won the 400 metres for Thames Valley with a new personal best of 52.58 seconds, which takes her to 9th on the all-time lists.
In the men's league, Glasgow City AC retained its place in Division 1 with a fourth place finish, well behind the promoted Thames Valley and Southampton but comfortably clear of the relegation pair. City were strong in patches with 4 individual wins on the final day but they are noticeably weak in several events.
The same can be said of Victoria Park City of Glasgow AC's women. Although there were triumphs for Chloe Lambert, Claire Thompson and Mhairi Patience and the 4x400 team, the club just did not have the strength in depth to survive and has been relegated from division 2. No points were collected from the sprint hurdles or pole vault, and minimum points mustered from the long jump and discus. It looks like a recruitment drive will be needed if VPG is to work its way up the divisions.
27 July 2016. Belatedly, and thanks to Colin Shields for highlighting this, the death of ultra runner Al Howie was announced earlier this month. The following is the start of his obituary announcement in the Daily Telegraph, with the link to the full appreciation.
AL HOWIE, who has died aged 70, was a Scottish-born “ultramarathon” runner known as “the Spartan Tartan” and a “real-life Forrest Gump” who set numerous records for continuous running.
Described by a Canadian obituarist as resembling a skinny Rob Roy, with the voice of Scotty from Star Trek and the prickly temperament of Groundskeeper Willie from The Simpsons, Howie entered the Guinness Book of World Records in 1991 when he ran across Canada, crossing six time zones, from St John’s, Newfoundland, to Victoria, British Columbia, a distance of more than 4,500 miles – equivalent to more than two back-to-back Tours de France. He did it in just over 72 days, in the process raising more than half a million dollars for special needs children’s charities.
To read the full obituary, please follow this link
22 July 2016. In a sensational run at London's Muller Anniversary Games, Laura Muir sent the home crowd into raptures on her way to 1500 metres victory, breaking Kelly Holmes’ 12 year old British record in the process.
Tracking the pacemaker from the off, Muir continued to push hard over the final 300m to move clear of runner-up Sifan Hassan. Coming into the home straight with victory already in the bag, all eyes were on the clock as the gutsy Scot fought all the way to the line, stopping it at 3.57.49. That knocked nearly half a second off Holmes’ mark, set when she won Olympic gold in Athens in 2004.
“Breaking the British record blows my mind a bit. I haven't run a fast 1500 this year so I wanted to go out there and show the world what I can do - I think the performance shows what I'm capable of. My last race wasn't a great one, but you can't get much better than tonight.
“I'm in really good shape and the pace was good. The third lap I just had to keep working hard to make sure I brought it home - the crowd were amazing.”
The performance ranks Laura 2nd in the world this year, behind Faith Kipyegon's 3:56.41 and betters her own Scottish record of 3:58.66. There was success for the other Scots in the field too, as Eilish McColgan and Steph Twell were rewarded with a personal and season’s best respectively as they stepped down from 5000m.
In the men's Emsley Carr Mile, Jake Wightman set a new personal best of 3:54.20 in finishing fourth.
Part 3 of our work on Scotland international matches is now up on the website (see the Scotland section) with the period 1969 to 1985 covered. The busiest period of Scotland international matches, it includes the Commonwealth Games in Edinburgh in 1970, and the emergence of athletes such as Allan Wells (as a long jumper), Liz Lynch, Yvonne Murray and Linsey Macdonald.
Tom McKean, pictured ahead of Paul Forbes, no. 32, winning the 1985 Scottish Championships, emerged as a star during the period.
Work has already started on Part 4 of the series, bringing the record up to the present time.
22 July 2016. Scottish Olympian Lennie Waite has become a first claim member of East Kilbride, and top under-17 athlete Holly McArthur has moved to Edinburgh AC. These were some of the moves among the following approved club changes with effect from 1 July:
Lucy Brand, Musselburgh & District AC to Team East Lothian; Anna Burnett, Harmeny AC to Edinburgh AC; John Coyle, Ron Hill Cambuslang Harriers to Garscube Harriers; Anwen Darlington, York Knavesmire Harriers to Dundee Road Runners; Kyle Jackson, North Ayrshire AC to Kilmarnock Harriers; Andrew Mackenzie, Ronhill Cambuslang Harriers to Falkirk Victoria Harriers; Matthew MacKinnon, Inverclyde AC to Glasgow City AC; Jane MacLeod, Pitreavie AAC to Carnegie Harriers; Holly McArthur, Whitemoss AAC to Edinburgh AC; Elise Methven, Anster Haddies to Fife AC; Murray Peebles, Harmeny AC to Dunbar RC; Neil Richardson, Hamilton Harriers to Motherwell AC; Iain Thomson, Carnegie Harriers to Strathearn Harriers; Lennie Waite, Aldershot Farnham & Dist AC to East Kilbride AC; John Wilkie, Strathearn Harriers to Perth Strathtay Harriers.
16 July 2016. PITREAVIE AAC has announced the sad news of the passing of John MacDonald. John was well known to everyone as one of the club’s top coaches, timekeeper and father to Olympian Linsey.
John inspired so many athletes over the years taking many to Scottish, British and International honours. On top of that he was a great mentor to many of the younger coaches. He will be sadly missed by everyone at Pitreavie and the wider athletic community.
Our thoughts go out to all of John's family at this difficult time.
15 July 2016. Pitreavie AAC's Eilidh Doyle proved she is in fine form heading to the Olympic Games with a clear win at the IAAF Diamond League Herculis meeting at Monaco. Having "settled" for relay gold at the European Championships when she would have been a clear favourite for the individual 400 metres hurdles, she was a clear winner in a new Scottish record time of 54.09 seconds, 0.54 ahead of the American Cassandra Tate.
Eilidh's time bettered her own Scottish record of 54.22, set 3 years ago at Birmingham. Her performance moves her to 6th in the World rankings, behind 4 Americans and a Jamaican.
Optimism as well surrounded the other 2 Scots in action at Monaco. Steph Twell continued her excellent season with a new personal best of 8:40.98 over 3000 metres. That takes her past Eilish McColgan to the top of the British rankings, and places her 4th Scot all-time, just one-hundredth behind Kathy Butler.
Lynsey Sharp excelled in a race won by Caster Semanya in a world-leading 1:55.33 with her 5th place of 1:57.75. That is the second fastest time she has ever run, just 0.04 seconds short of her Scottish record. She remains a clear leader in the British rankings, the only athlete to better 2 minutes this year. As with Eilidh, Lynsey has moved to 6th in the world rankings.
Earlier in the week, there was a Scottish record for Nick Percy. Subject to ratification, he has improved his discus record to 61.78 at a throws meeting at Helsingborg. Stef Reid improved to an outstanding 5.78 metres for a new World T44 long jump record.
13 July 2016. The British selectors have increased the size of the Great Britain & Northern Ireland team with the second wave of selections. Finding a place in the team are women's 5000 metres runner Laura Whittle, who finished 5th at the European Championships, and hammer throwers Chris Bennett and Mark Dry.
That brings the Scottish representation up to 15. If all compete, that would equal the 15 who competed at the Olympic Games at London in 1908. There, 17 Scottish athletes were actually selected but at that time as many as 12 athletes could be selected for one event. in modern times, the 12 selected for Munich in 1972 (11 competed) was the previous highest Scottish representation at the Olympics.
For a complete record of Scots at the Olympic Games, please see here.
26 June 2016. The hopes were high that our potential Olympic contenders would perform in the hot competition of the British Championships at Birmingham over the weekend. And, without doubt, they did just that with 8 more Scots gaining automatic selection for Rio.
Pride of place must go to Andrew Butchart, Eilidh Doyle and Laura Muir who not only won their races but won them by the length of Sauchiehall Street. Steph Twell was none less convincing, leading Eilish McColgan and Laura Whittle to a Scottish 1-2-3 in the 5000, with Whittle now waiting to see if the selectors add her to the team. Others secured their place by coming home in reasonably safe 2nd places - Chris O'Hare, Lennie Waite and Lynsey Sharp. And so, from a domestic point of view, Central AC (Butchart) and East Kilbride AAC (Waite) will be represented at the Olympics for the first time.
Those not yet with an Olympic standard but who were crowned British champions were Chris Bennett, hammer winner over Mark Dry, and Nick Percy, the first Scottish winner of a UK discus title since Darrin Morris in 1993. There were medals, too, for Jax Thoirs (2nd, pole vault), Allan Smith (3rd, high jump), Allan Hamilton (3rd, long jump), Kirsty Law (3rd, discus) and Jake Wightman (3rd, 1500), the windy conditions not benefiting the vertical jumps.
Others did not have any realistic Olympic goals but were there for the experience and development. Some looked out of their depth but Greg Millar threw the javelin over 70 metres for the first time to finish 4th; Heather Paton reduced her hurdles PB again to 13.64, the fifth fastest Scot of all time; Josh Kerr competed well to come through 4th in the 1500; and Ben Greenwood, still under 20, finished 6th in the 800.
Thoughts too for Guy Learmonth, unable to compete in the 800 final because of a hamstring problem, and Kirsten McAslan, who has written off her Olympic goals through glandular fever.
And it was not all about Birmingham this weekend. In Mannheim, Cameron Tindle became the second fastest U20 Scot with a 20.82 200 run to gain a qualifying standard for the World Juniors.
10 June 2016 Nebraska student, thrower Nick Percy, has won the national championship in the discus on day three of the NCAA Track & Field Outdoor Championships on Friday at Hayward Field, Eugene, breaking his own Scottish record in the process.
He becomes the first Scotsman to win an outdoor NCAA title with only Meg Ritchie, winner of the women's shot and discus in 1982, having that honour.
Percy took the early lead in the discus with his first throw in flight two, 201-0 (61.27m). It was a Scottish record. His mark held up for the rest of the competition to win him the national title, fending off three competitors who were within two inches of his mark. Percy, the Big Ten champion in the event, finished 15th last year as a freshman and was seeded eighth entering this week's championships. It is only the 2nd time since 2004 that the winner has thrown over the 200 feet distance.
"I was absolutely shocked," Percy said. "The conditions weren't very good today. The wind was swirling a lot. To throw nearly a three-foot PR on the day, at nationals in the first round, I couldn't really ask for more. It was good enough to win and I couldn't ask for any better way, in the first round, to just get it in the bag and relax."
"I've had great practices here the last couple of days," Percy said. "I've had some big throws, so I had the expectation that I wanted to win. I knew if I could get a big throw, around 61 (meters), I had a chance. But I at least wanted to get a throw in the first round because last year I had two fouls. I wanted to be able to get a throw in the first round, then I wanted to make top nine, then I wanted to try and compete. Luckily, first round did all three."
Photo Courtesy Scott Bruhn/Nebraska Communications
SANDY SUTHERLAND WRITES - THROWS TROPHY REACHES GOLDEN MILESTONE
When the excellent Inverness thrower George Evans defends his shot and discus titles, now in the colours of Strathallan School, at the Scottish Schools Championships at Grangemouth Stadium on June 10 and 11 he will also be a firm favourite to retain the AH Dalrymple Trophy which is presented to the outstanding male thrower at the meeting... Read more
1 June 2016. The following are the approved club changes with effect from 1 June:
Vivienne Archibald, Ellon to Aberdeen; Matthew Brawley, Ayr Seaforth to Edinburgh; Eve Cameron, Harmeny to Livingston; William Darling, Gala to Lasswade; Brian Douglas, Bellahouston to Cambuslang; Broc Drury, Gala to Aberdeen; Sarah MacPhail, Orkney to VP Glasgow; Timothy Martin, Bellahouston Road Runners to Garscube; John McOmish, Livingston to Lasswade; Rory Muir, Dundee Hawkhill to Aberdeen; Bernadette O’Neil, Bellahouston to Cambuslang; Max Ralston, VP Glasgow to Glasgow City; Chloe Simpson, Inverclyde to Kilbarchan.
22 May 2016. After almost 36 years as a Scottish record, Nat Muir's 5000 metres time of 13:17.9 has been eclipsed by Andy Butchart. The Central AC athlete, running in the FBK Games at Hengelo, Netherlands, finished 9th in a high-class field in a time of 13:13.30 to take over 4 seconds off Muir's record.
Butchart, who had improved to within a second of Muir's record with his 13:18.96 run at the Payton Jordan meeting in California at the start of the month, completed the race with just one shoe!
The race was won by Dejen Gebremeskel of Ethiopia in 13:00.99 from Abrar Osman Adem (Eritrea) 13:04.12, with the Kenyan Bethwell Birgen third in 13:04.66. Butchart was one place behind the top European, Antonio Abadia Beci of Spain in 13:12.68.
Six of the top 11 athletes ran PBs with fellow Brit, Andrew Baddeley well off the pace in 17th position.
15 May 2016. On a busy weekend for Scottish athletes across the world, with the district championships in Scotland, the regional collegiate championships in the United States, the BMC Grand Prix at Manchester, Scottish athletes performed admirably.
Pride of place went to Adam Scott (pictured left, by Bobby Gavin) of Fife AC, who won his 1500 metres race at the BMC meeting in 3:52.07, bettering the existing record of 3:52.46 set in 2014 by Josh Kerr.
Josh himself won the 1500 at the Mountain West Championships where there was also success for Allan Hamilton in the long jump. Nick Percy took the discus title at the Big 10, Jax Thoirs won the pole vault at the Pac-12 and Luke Traynor won the 10000 at the AAC Championships.
There was a fine unde-20 sprint double, unchallenged, by Cameron Tindle at the East Districts in 10.69/21.44, Alisha Rees set a new 200 PB of 24.01, while at the West, Holly McArthur caught the eye with her 61.21 400 metres hurdles victory.
15 May 2016. Edinburgh AC continue to strengthen with the recruitment of young Scottish throwers Thora Cant from Orkney and Bevhan Trevis from Central. The following are the approved club changes with effect from 1 May:
Rebecca Burns, Pitreavie to Edinburgh; Cameron Caldwell, Tweed Leader JedTrack to Edinburgh; Thora Cant, Orkney AC to Edinburgh; Ellie Davidson, North Ayrshire to VP Glasgow; Zoe Edward, Metro Aberdeen to Aberdeen; Nathan Fleetwood, Law & District to Whitemoss; Lily Middleton, Musselburgh to Team East Lothian; Kerry Morris, Edinburgh to Team East Lothian; Rhys Paterson, Dundee Hawkhill to Edinburgh; Graham Porterfield, East Kilbride to Aberdeen; Derek Rae, Anster Haddies to Fife; Esme Slifer, Musselburgh to Team East Lothian; Eloise Speirs, Notts to VP Glasgow; Jake Speirs, Notts to VP Glasgow; Bevhan Trevis, Central to Edinburgh; Evie Welsh, Dunbar to Team East Lothian; Angus Wright, Haddington to Team East Lothian.
12 May 2016. UK Athletics has confirmed that Nigel Holl has been appointed to the newly created role of Director of Strategy and Partnerships following a six year stint as the head of Scottish Athletics.
The role will focus on co-ordinating UKA strategy for domestic athletics, in close partnership with the Home Country Federations and UKA board, on key strategic issues relating to strategic prioritisation, investment and partnerships.
Holl has held a part-time post working as a head of strategy since July 2015 on a part-time basis alongside his role of CEO at Scottish Athletics. Since his appointment in 2010, membership figures have risen by 51 percent from 8,070 to over 12,000 this month.
Holl said: "I have been extremely fortunate to have played the role that I have during such an exciting time for athletics in Scotland. I hope I can take everything I have been fortunate to learn from Scottish Athletics into this new role with UKA. I really don’t see it as leaving – I see it as taking a new role where I hope I can still provide positive influence to benefit athletes, coaches, clubs, officials, volunteers, staff and Board members across Scotland and other home nations."
Niels de Vos, UK Athletics Chief Executive said: “I am delighted to welcome Nigel to this role in a full time capacity. The next few years for athletics in the UK are crucial with us staging major championships in 2017, 18 and 19. It is vital that the domestic picture and strategic overview for the sport through to 2020 is focused on and Nigel has proven he has the energy and expertise to really develop this opportunity for the wider sport.”
(Report taken from British Athletics website)
1 May 2016. There were stunning successes for Scottish 5000 metres runners at the Payton Jordan Invitational at Stanford, California where Andrew Butchart, Laura Whittle and Eilish McColgan all achieved Olympic A qualification standards and re-wrote the record books.
Andy Butchart set a new PB of 13:18.96 to move him to 3rd all-time, overtaking Scots greats Ian McCafferty and Ian Stewart and go within a second of Nat Muir's long-standing record of 13:17.9. His time bettered the Olympic qualifying standard of 13:25.00.
Eilish McColgan took 35 seconds from her PB in her first race after missing last year through injury. Her time of 15:09.94 was well within the Olympic qualifying standard of 15:24.00, but she had to give best to Laura Whittle, placing one place above her in 15:08.58, a 12 second improvement. Laura moves to 5th on the all-time list with Eilish now in 6th.
There was also a big PB for Beth Potter, improving 8 seconds with 15:28.32, a time that gives her the European qualifying standard, and in the B race there was another PB, for Sarah Inglis.
Army captain David Seath, 31, an Afghanistan veteran, tragically died of a cardiac arrest on Sunday, 3 miles from the end of the London Marathon. In his younger days, David was a talented member of Pitreavie AAC. As an Under 15 in 1999, David was East District 400 metres champion (56.13) and was 2nd in the 200 metres (24.79). He was also 2nd in the 400 at the Scottish Schools Championships that year. Our thoughts go to his family and friends at this time.
9 April 2016. Nick Percy, representing the University of Nebraska, became the first Scot to clear 60 metres for the discus throw when he won the Husker Spring Invitational at Lincoln, Nebraska, with a throw of 60.49 metres.
Opening with a throw of 53.39, Nick moved into a clear lead in the second round with 58.03, before unleashing the discus out to 60.49 in the third round. He followed this up with throws of 57.03, 60.00, and 56.19, five of his throws bettering the 2nd placed athlete, Payton Otterdahl (North Dakota State) 54.63. 3rd was Isaac Holtz (Northern Iowa) 54.59.
The performance improves on Angus McInroy's national record of 58.77 and Nick's own best of 58.61. It also beats Colin Sutherland's 1978 throw of 59.84 which was never ratified as a Scottish record.
Whether Nick's throw will be ratified as a Scottish record will depend on the necessary paperwork being submitted.
29 March 2016. The selection policy for the Commonwealth Games 2018 has been published with the selection targets being geared to a top 6 finish at the Games.
There is a new focus on the levels of meeting at which selection performances can be obtained, and there is a selection incentive for medalling with a standard performance at the British championships.
29 March 2016. Edinburgh AC and Glasgow City AC have strengthened their teams ahead of this year's British League, with Alisha Rees (Banchory) and Rachel Robertson (Lasswade) joining Edinburgh as first claim members from 1 April.
Glasgow City AC have taken on the VP Glasgow twin sprinters, Alec and Kade Thomas.
Other changes of club from 1 April: Hamish Battle, Fife to Metro Aberdeen; Natalie Carson, Fife to Pitreavie; Gordon Crawford, Central to Falkirk Victoria; Kathleen Dempsey, Lothian to Edinburgh; Craig Dunlop, Dunfermline T&F to Pitreavie; Heather and Jamie Kinghorn, Chirnside to Lasswade; Emma Latto, Moorfoot to Lasswade; Lauren McCulloch, East Sutherland to Central; Ruaridh Miller, Edinburgh to Central; Jocelyn Moar, Lothian to Edinburgh; Robert Reid and Matty Sutton, Bellahouston RR to Gala; Angus, Islay and Finlay Rutter, Ross County to Inverness; Cian Young, Fife to Pitreavie.
Changes of club from 1 March: Aidan and Scott Brindley, Beith to North Ayrshire; Leanne Calder (Webster), Lothian to Edinburgh; Esme Callander & Mark Ingram, both Musselburgh to East Lothian; Andrew Ferguson, Banchory to Aberdeen; Nicole Furness, Lothian to Falkirk Victoria; Andrew Harkins & David Henderson, both Greenock Glenpark to Inverclyde; David Henderson, Greenock Glenpark to Inverclyde; Robert Johnson, Carnethy to Gala; Kirstin Oakley, Glasgow City to Ayr; Fiona Stewart, Spey to Moray; Patrick Swan, East Lothian to Chirnside; Oliver Wagner, Annan to Livingston.
23 March 2016. We note the death this month of former Scottish international athlete Andrew Ferguson on 1st March at the age of 87. A member of English club Highgate Harriers, he had a long athletic career.
He represented Scotland in the international against England, Wales and Ireland at 3 miles in 1950, finishing 3rd. That year, he was second to the Belgian Lucien Theys in the AAA Championship 3 miles in 14:11.6. At the time, that performance was a Scottish best although it was not officially recognised as a record because of the rules in force at the time.
He was 2nd in the Scottish Cross Country Championships in 1952 to Eddie Bannon.
He continued running for many years and he ran a good London marathon in 2:39:48 at the age of 53.
Andrew Thomson Ferguson, b. 7 November 1928, d. 1 March 2016.
22 March 2016. One of the rules of the IAAF and UK Athletics is that no records can be set within mixed races. However, at a meeting of the Track and Field Commission of scottishathletics last week, a proposal from the records committee to change this rule for the younger age-groups has been accepted.
The Commission accepted the following proposals:
(a) For senior and under-20 performances, the rules followed by British Athletics will be adhered to. Therefore, no performances set in mixed races will be acceptable for records.
(b) For under-17, under-15 and under-13 performances, performances set in mixed races will be acceptable for records. However, in open graded competition, the rules for the under-13 and under-15 age-groups must be followed. This means that no under-13 performances will be accepted as a record if there are under-17, under-20 or senior athletes in the field; and no under-15 performance will be accepted as a record if there are under-20 or senior athletes in the field.
As a result of this change, the under-13 boys' record has been altered to 4:30.86 by Josh Kerr at the Scottish Schools Championships on 12 June 2010.
18 March 2016. The Track & Field Commission has this week ratified 29 indoor performances as Scottish records.
At Senior National level, Lynsey Sharp (pictured winning in Boston) has had her Boston 800 metres performance of 2:00.30 approved. Chris O'Hare's mile record of 3:52.91 at the Millrose Games, improving on his own record, has been ratified, as has Cameron Tindle's 21.14 200 metres, which was also an under-20 record. There was also a new 4x200 metres women's club record of 1:41.28 by Victoria Park City of Glasgow AC.
The Glasgow Grand Prix event resulted in 4 all-comers' and 3 native records being approved, with the native records falling to Laura Muir, Steph Twell and Andrew Butchart.
At age-group level, there were new records ratified for Jenna Wrisberg at 60 (7.50) and Anna Gordon (3.92 and 4.00) at Under-20 as well as Cameron Tindle's 21.14 200 and his earlier 21.46. Alessandro Schenini had his 3 performances of 7.00, 7.00 and 7.09 recognised as long jump records and Erin Wallace's 2:06.59 at 800 and 4:25.75 at 1500 were accepted.
At under-15 level, Max Leslie (38.98, then 38.40) at 300 metres, Miraji Ahmed's 12.36 triple jump and Ellie O'Hara's 10.76 girls' triple jump went into the record books, as did Alyson Bell's 8.11 and 27.26 under-13 60 and 200 metres times and Katie Johnson's 1500 metres of 4:58.60.
Giffnock North AAC set new records for the under-17 4 x 200 metres relay (1:44.01) and under-13 relay (1:53.66), the latter performances giving Alyson Bell her 3rd record.
The updated indoor records can be found on our records pages.
The Commission also set new guidance for performances in mixed and open graded events as well as some other amendments to the published guidance on records, and we will publicise this over the weekend.
11 March 2016. Jax Thoirs became only the 3rd Scot to win an event at the NCAA Indoor Championships when he won the pole vault with a vault of 5.50 metres at Birmingham, Alabama.
Previously Meg Ritchie had won the women's shot in 1983 and Chris O'Hare had taken the men's mile title in 2012 at these prestigious national collegiate championships.
Thoirs had a first-time clearance at the event entry-height of 5.25 metres, a height that saw 4 of the 16 competitors depart the scene. A second-time clearance at 5.35 saw him move to joint 5th position and while it took 3 vaults to clear 5.45 metres, that height cleared out most of the competition and placed him 2nd behind South Alabama's Sean Collins as the only ones successful at this height, but with two other athletes passing at the height, a medal was not yet secure. The bar moved up to 5.50 metres and Thoirs, the University of Washington student, was the only one to clear - at his 2nd attempt - as Collins, Devin King and Adrian Valles failed all three attempts. Having won the competition, Jax had the bar put up to 5.70 for one attempt at a new Scottish record, but failed to make the clearance.
6 March 2016. The Scottish Age-Group Championships this weekend saw some quality sprinting with 3 Scottish records falling in the women's sprints.
Jenna Wrisberg (pictured winning the under-20 title, pic: Bobby Gavin) improved from her pre-meet PB of 7.62 to a remarkable 7.50, in winning the under-20 60 metres title by 0.29 from Cara-Jay Murdoch. Jenna's time bettered Gosia Rostek's long-standing under-20 record of 7.52 and moved Jenna to 8th fastest in the senior all-time lists.
It was a fine weekend for Giffnock North sprinters with Alyson Bell having broken both the under-13 60 metres and 200 metres records on the Saturday. She took the 60 title in 8.11 and, although beaten in the 200 by Liverpool's Mia Morrisroe, set a new record of 27.26. These performances removed the 60/200 double record performances by Nicola Gossman from 1999, when she took the titles in 8.13 and 27,27. Alyson is pictured below (169) winning the 60 in determined style by Bobby Gavin.
Edinburgh's Max Leslie won the 300 metres in 38.40, bettering his own under-15 record which is awaiting ratification, and Allan Scott's under-15 triple jump record of 12.16 was beaten by Glasgow School of Sport's Miraji Ahmed with a jump of 12.35. With the girls triple jump now becoming a championship event, the leading jump by Ellie O'Hara will also be put forward for record status - deservedly so, as it was 76cm best than any recorded by an under-15. And Katie Johnson's 1500 run of 4:58.60 made her the first under-13 to better 5 minutes as she claimed the Scottish record. It was a highly successful weekend with 7 new records and 33 further additions to the all-time top ten lists across the three age-groups.
1 March 2016. Scotland will be represented by 4 athletes following the announcement of the team to represent British Athletics at the World Indoor Championships in Portland, USA on 17-20 March.
Following their 1-2 at the British Championships at the weekend, Steph Twell and Josephine Moultrie will compete in the 3000 metres.
UK rankings' leaders Lynsey Sharp and Chris O'Hare will go in the 800 metres and 1500 metres respectively.
Only O'Hare of the quartet has been to the World Indoors before, in 2014.
The selection of 4 Scottish athletes matches the 2014 selection number and is the highest number to be represented at these championships.
For a full record of Scotland's past performances at the World Indoors, see here
The full British team is named here.
Tom McCook, a long-time Birchfield Harriers stalwart and Athletics Weekly contributor, has died aged 69 from a heart attack.
Inverness-born McCook moved to Birmingham and went on to become president of his beloved Birchfield. Such was his popularity and impact on the sport he was given the prestigious Ron Pickering Memorial Award for Services to Athletics.
McCook was an ever-present at athletics events, especially at the Alexander Stadium, where he passed on his infectious enthusiasm for the sport with athletes, coaches, spectators and journalists. He was part of the fabric of Birchfield Harriers – a club that has produced Olympians such as Denise Lewis, Ian Stewart and Katharine Merry. He never forgot his Scottish roots and was always supportive of Scottish athletics.
He worked for the Post Office and organised their national championships throughout the United Kingdom for the benefit of many athletes. His wife Carol was part of the Scottish athletic family Stewart, and Tom was brother-in-law to Scottish internationals Ian, Peter and Mary Stewart.
28 February 2016. It happened in the heats, but was nonetheless a remarkable performance as 17-year-old Cameron Tindle not only broke his own under-20 200 metres record of 21.46, set just 2 weeks ago, but removed Ryan Oswald's senior national record of 21.25 as he won the first heat of the British Championships at Sheffield in 21.14. Cameron could not keep up the momentum in his semi final and final, finishing a distant 6th.
His performance followed on from yesterday's under-20 record by Anna Gordon in the pole vault, improving her 3.92 performance (as with Tindle, awaiting ratification at the March meeting of the Track & Field Commission) with a bronze-medal winning 4.00 metres.
Anna's bronze medal was matched today by Guy Learmonth (800), Lynsey Sharp (800), Maddie Murray (1500), and Sarah Warnock (LJ), but there was one god and silver today. This happened in the same race, the women's 3000 metres, where Steph Twell followed up her fine run at the Glasgow Grand Prix to take the title in 8:54.99, with Jo Moultrie also bettering 9 minutes in 8:58.75 for a Scottish 1-2.
21 February 2016. Following the record blitz at the Glasgow Grand Prix yesterday, attention turned in the evening to Lynsey Sharp and Chris O'Hare, competing in New York at the Millrose Games. Lynsey Sharp was edged into 5th position in her 800 metres race, finishing in 2:01.55, but Chris O'Hare competed in the strong Wanamaker mile. Going through 1500 metres in 3:37.88, Chris finished strongly, moving up to 3rd in 3:52.91, taking 0.07 off his own Scottish national indoor record. Here's a link to the video of the race on the Millrose Games website. Link
20 February 2016. The Scottish record books were re-written today as 3 new native records and 4 all-comers' records were set at the Glasgow Grand Prix at the Emirates Arena. Steph Twell (pictured) and Andy Butchart both removed 3000 metres records that have lasted since the early days of Kelvin Hall, the 1989 records of Liz McColgan and Alistair Currie disappearing from the record books. Laura Muir is never too far away when it comes to records and she bettered her own native record for 800 metres.
Mo Farah was inside his own 3000 all-comers' record and Shawn Barber took the pole vault record up to 5.89. Both 1500 metres records went, Abdalaati Iguider took over 3 seconds off the 1500 with his 3:34.94 run while Sifan Hassan removed 4 seconds from the women's 1500.
But the 60 metres and Tom McKean's 800 all-comers' records live on as Kim Collins and Adam Kszczot came within 0.01 seconds of each.
18 February 2016. The Scottish women emerged triumphant at the Armagh Grand Prix as the team of Laura Whittle (3rd), Sarah Inglis (2nd), Beth Potter (15th), and Stephie Pennycook (14th) claimed the team prize. With Eilish McColgan (5th) running as an individual entrant in a return from injury, it was a strong showing.
On the men's side, Cameron Boyek - eleventh last year - improved to 6th this year to help the Scottish team to 2nd place behind Poland. Jake Wightman (22nd), Ben Stevenson (36th) and Jonathan Glen (60th) made up the Scottish team.
12 February 2016. Lynsey Sharp, in her first indoor racing for 3 years, has bettered Laura Muir's Scottish indoor record of 2:00.94 in Boston at the David Hemery Valentine Invitational meeting. In a class of her own, she finished over 3 seconds ahead of the field, winning in 2:00.30, ahead of Anima Banks 2:03.41 and Annette Melcher 2:03.98. Lynsey opened her season last weekend in New York with a 2:02.25 run.
scottishathletics has approved the following changes of first claim clubs with effect from 1 February 2016:
Adam Anderson, Carnethy Hill RC to Annan & Dist AC; Eve Beswick & Jenna Beswick, Kilmarnock Harriers to Ayr Seaforth AC; Jonathan Bryce, Kirkintilloch Olympians to Springburn Harriers; Claire Jellem, London Heathside to Edinburgh AC; James Mcintosh, Ellon AAC to Aberdeen AAC; Owen Miller, Dunfermline T&F AC to Fife AC; Grant Mudd, Airdrie Harriers to Motherwell AC; Michael O’Donnell, Metro Aberdeen AAC to Inverness Harriers; Kudakwashe Tapatapa, Kilmarnock Harriers to Edinburgh AC; William Watson, Haddington R.C. to Aberdeen AAC.
30 January 2016. She may not have been a medal-winner but the top performance of the Scottish senior and under-17 championships came from 15-year-old Erin Wallace (pictured). Forsaking an under-17 title to compete in the highly competitive 800 metres, Erin was edged into 4th place in a time of 2:06.59. That time was a new UK indoor under-17 best and removed an astonishing 3.69 seconds from Sarah Eunson's Scottish under-17 record, set only last year. Eunson's record had bettered Linsey Macdonald's time, which had lasted as an U17 record for 35 years. The race itself was won by Kirsten McAslan, stepping up from 400 to 800, in 2:04.48. There was another record in the women's pole vault, where Anna Gordon added 2cm to Kim Skinner's under-20 record with her vault of 3.92 metres.
Fraser Clyne and Colin Youngson wrote a history of the SAAA Marathon from its inception in 1947 in 2000 and it quickly sold out. They have brought it up to date and added many good photographs, some never seen before. It is on the www.scottishdistancerunninghistory.scot website and well worth a look if you are interested in the event. The quick link is www.scottishdistancerunninghistory.scot/a-hardy-race/
25 January 2016. You can see what's new on the website by looking at the What's New link in the menu on the right.
Today we've added the senior rankings for 2015 to the annual rankings page - the only rankings that are contained within the one document, and include 10-year trends and comments.
We've started our 2016 top 5 rankings on the rankings page and we've linked to a new athlete blog for Sean Fontana, the VP-Glasgow athlete who has started at Adams State in the USA.
Wishing you all a happy, healthy and successful 2016. Welcome to SATS 2016 - the 2015 news stories have been relocated in the Earlier News pages (see menu on the right).
Early 2016 will see the final rankings for 2015 added, expanded and more detailed senior all-time ranking lists, archive updates, and the 3rd instalment of the Scotland internationals history, taking the story up to 1985 ... as well as all the current results updates.
I have been given, courtesy of Victoria Park City of Glasgow AC, a collection of Athletics Weekly magazines dating back to 1954. There are a substantial number of magazines, 5 filled boxes, which tell a fascinating story of athletics through the decades. (Please note - it is not a complete set).
If anyone is interested in having these, then please contact me at the email address on the right. They are available by collection only (Glasgow location) and all I would ask is that a donation be made to SATS funds which I will pass on to VP Glasgow.
scottishathletics has approved the following changes of first claim clubs with effect from 1 January 2016:
Rachel Broadfoot (Arbroath to Dundee Hawkhill), Graham Green (RAF Menwith Hill to Glasgow Front Runners), Mark O'Brien (Caithness to North Highland), Thomas O'Hear (Airdrie to Cumbernauld), Jennifer Reid (Campbeltown to Ronhill Cambuslang), Ben Stafford (Victoria Park City of Glasgow to Ronhill Cambuslang), Anna Tait (Orkney to Victoria Park Glasgow), Thomas Whiteford (Airdrie to Cumbernauld).
The Scottish Association of Track Statisticians has documented athletics performances in Scotland for over 50 years and this website provides authoritative and factual information on performances, rankings, athlete profiles, and records as well as documenting the history of the sport in Scotland.
SATS have published a new book The Past Is a Foreign Country covering a history of athletics in Scotland through the stories of the athletes themselves.
See the Book page on the menu at the top right for details.
You can follow us as well on our facebook page for information and stories.