Tavistock College’s Luke Cressey, Plymouth High School for Girls’ Emily Bee and Devonport High School for Girls’ Ella Isaias all finished in the top eight in their events at the prestigious competition.
Cressey set a new personal best to win bronze in the senior boys’ decathlon contest. He scored 6,112 points to finish behind Berkshire’s Stuart Bladon and Hampshire’s Adam Booth.
Cressey ran 11.83 seconds for the 100m, leaped 6.45m in the long jump, threw 11.74m in the shot, recorded 1.89m in the high jump, ran a PB of 51.93 seconds in the 400m, clocked 15.69 seconds for the 110m hurdles, threw 26.34m in the discus, jumped 3.30m in the pole vault, threw 45.38m in the javelin before finishing off with a 4:52.50 1,500m run.
Bee had been one of the favourites for the senior girls’ titles. She went into the competition with the highest UK ranking of the field, but her chances of glory were her hit in the opening event – the 100m hurdles. That is normally her best event but running into an incredibly strong -3.8 head wind, Bee hit a hurdle badly and stumbled. She did well to stay on her feet but lost all her speed and ended up finishing nearly two-and-a-half seconds off her PB in 16.78 seconds.
That left the City of Plymouth athlete with a mountain to climb. However, she battled hard and worked her way back up through the field and finished fourth, just outside the medals. She equalled her high jump PB with a leap of 1.68m, threw 9.39m in the shot, ran 26.67 seconds in a strong wind in the 200m, leaped 5.33m in the long jump, threw 34.37m in the javelin and won the 800m in 2:29.72.
South West champion Bee still has another year left at senior girls’ level and she will end the year ranked sixth in the UK under-20 rankings with a best score of 4,979 points, which, had she been able to repeat that, would have won at the weekend. Bee’s Devon team-mate Emily Tyrrell edged her out for bronze on Sunday.
In the junior girls’ heptathlon, Erme Valley Harriers’ Isaias set a new PB to finish eighth in a large field. She scored 2,822 points. She ran 12.65 seconds for the 80m hurdles, threw 8.13m in the shot, leaped 1.53m in the high jump in horrible conditions, managed 4.67m in the long jump and won her heat of the 800m in 2:30.77.
Host county Devon enjoyed a good championships. As well as Cressey and Tyrrell, Katie Chapman also won a bronze medal, while intermediate athlete Craig Moncur was fourth, like Bee. Devon also picked up a team award in the intermediate girls’ competition.