Enfield youngster Callum Wilkinson strode to a comfortable victory at the first Enfield Race Walking League event of 2014

Wilkinson starts league campaign with PB

Wilkinson starts league campaign with PB

First published in Sport

Enfield walker Callum Wilkinson made a perfect start to the Enfield Race Walking League as he clinched victory and a personal best time.

Wilkinson set the pace from the start but was closely followed by Fransisco Reis and Ian Richards.

The 16-year-old maintained his lead but Reis, who was preparing for the forthcoming World Masters Indoor Championships, pushed him all the way.

However, Wilkinson crossed the line in first and his time of 38.54 was a personal best by more than three minutes.

“It is great to win the races but sometimes I am looking more at the clock rather than the position I am getting,” the Enfield & Haringey Athletics club competitor said.

“Winning a race is great and that doesn’t change but at the weekend I got a new personal best by three minutes and that is a real big step in the right direction for this year.”

He continued: “I knew throughout the race that I had set a quick pace. I kept that up throughout on what wasn’t an easy course because there was a large uphill section.

“But I kept going and I am very pleased with the time that I managed to achieve.”

The youngster only took up the sport in 2012 but has quickly established himself as one of the counties’ brightest prospects and was victorious at the England Athletics Under-17 championships last September.

He will compete at the Victoria Park 10k in just under two weeks as is looking forward to testing himself over a longer distance.

He said: “It had been a while since I did a five mile race and I have been doing a lot of training. So if I want to do a 10k quickly then I need to a five mile race quickly.

“So I am building up to the 10k races. At Victoria Park I will see what time I can get and then I can see what I have got to build on for the rest of the year.”

The Enfield athletics club had several other athletes in action at the event. John Ralph (46.15) was ninth, Arthur Thomson (47.50) took 13th, Gary Smith (51.00) was 20th and Helen Middleton was the third woman home in 51.53.

Sue Barnett clocked 53.37 while Sean Pender, Linda Spinks and Norma Grimsey were all well inside the hour mark.

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