Hastings trio tackle top London event

Hastings athletes Adam Clarke, Lee Emanuel and Ross Skelton at the City of London Mile
Hastings athletes Adam Clarke, Lee Emanuel and Ross Skelton at the City of London Mile
  • Hastings trio tackle City of London Mile
  • Clarke finishes fourth, Emanuel fifth and Skelton 13th
  • In-form Clarke also set 1,500m PB in Spain last week
  • Skelton preparing for England U23 Championships this weekend
  • Clarke and Emanuel in field for British Championships

Three athletes from the town took part in a high class middle distance race in London.

Adam Clarke, Lee Emanuel and Ross Skelton were part of a select 13-man field which contested the City of London Mile last weekend.

Clarke finished fourth in a time of 4:04.41, fractionally ahead of fifth-placed Emanuel, who crossed the line in 4:04.67. Skelton, who was the youngest in the field and making a big step up, was 13th in 4:16.87.

Julian Matthews was the winner of a race which took place in wet conditions over a course featuring an uphill finish in 4:03.40.

The result continued a fine run of form for Clarke, who won the Westminster Mile last month and clocked a 1,500m personal best in Spain on Wednesday, last week.

He said: “I would’ve liked to have been top three ideally, but I was happy with the result. There were three or four internationals in the field, but I knew I could contend in the race.”

Clarke, who won the 5,000m at the British Under-23 Championships a couple of years ago, has recently changed coaches to Geoff Watkins and appears on the verge of a big breakthrough.

The 24-year-old graduated from St Mary’s University in Twickenham two years ago. He still lives in that area and now works in asset management in the finance industry.

“I would probably say I’m as fit as I’ve ever been and probably as confident,” added Clarke, who regularly returns to the locality to visit family.

“I’m just hoping to stay healthy, not get injured, slowly improve my personal bests and compete really in most races. By doing that you’re going to automatically improve. One day I would like to make a senior championships.”

Clarke, who runs first claim for Aldershot, Farnham & District AC and second claim for Hastings AC, has a 3,000m race in Ireland and a couple of 1,500m events in Belgium on the horizon.

He is also set to come up against Emanuel again in the 1,500m at the Sainsbury’s British Championships in Birmingham early next month.

Emanuel has recently returned to the area having been training in the US since winning a brilliant silver medal in the 3,000m at the European Indoor Championships during March.

Skelton, who also attended St Mary’s University, lives locally and runs first claim for Brighton Phoenix.

The 22-year-old is heading in the right direction with his running and will feature in another big event this weekend when he lines up in the 5,000m at the England Athletics U23 Championships & European Trials in Bedford.

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