Turner times it right to land 400m indoor title in top time
JESSICA Turner was the star of the show as Derbyshire club athletes brought home eight medals from the Northern Indoor Championships in Sheffield.
Amber Valley & Erewash AC junior Turner won her first Northern title with a measured effort in the under-20 400m final.
Turner cruised to a win in the heats in 58.31 seconds, the second fastest of the qualifying times.
But in the final, she trailed the leader, Sale Harrier Beth Bolton, for the first lap and a half before attacking off the final bend, kicking hard to cross the line in 56.81, a personal best by a full second.
She had almost three-tenths of a second on Bolton by the line and it was the second-fastest time run so far this indoor season by an under-20.
Niamh Emerson brought home a second gold for the Amber Valley club in the under-15 girls' 800m.
Her 2.22.50 was the fastest time in the heats and she also ran a smart race in the final, staying near the front of the pack and covering any breaks, before choosing to hit the front just before the bell.
She was six-tenths clear of Emily Simpson (City of Sheffield) at the line.
Derby AC's Rich Weir also came home with a gold medal as he found it easy to dominate the competition in the 3000m, racing away to win by 46 seconds in the men's 3000m in 8.23.69.
Suzzi Palmer may only have come home with a bronze medal in the senior long jump but that only told a little of the story as the Derby AC all-rounder leapt a personal best 5.63m for her third place – four centimetres further than she has gone before – and was the highest-placed under-23 athlete in the competition.
For good measure, Palmer came fourth in the senior 60m hurdles, not an event she is too familiar with, setting a personal best at 9.13 seconds, although she collected a bruised knee from bashing one of the barriers.
Senior 800m runner Natalie Shaw (Derby AC) took silver in the 800m, running 2.14.12, less than two seconds behind winner Sarah McDonald.
The 26-year-old had cruised through her heat in a quicker time, winning it in 2.13.50.
She was also fifth in the 1500m final in 4.35.44.
Amber Valley's Jethro McGraw stepped up an age group to under-17, competing in his first track event at that age and his first over 1500m indoors.
Trafford's Jake Crabtree took the race by the horns, charging away early on, but, with a lap to go, it was mcGraw who almost caught him, finishing three seconds behind in a personal best 4.08.76 for a silver medal.
Derby hurdles starlet Yasmin Miller mixed it with the seniors in the flat 60m, taken on for early season speed work, and came home with a bronze medal after finishing in 7.54 seconds.
There was also a bronze medal for Derby AC newcomer Leroy Keeling after he ran 8.01 seconds in the under-15 boys' 60m.