Fifteen-year-old Stanmore middle distance runner Richard Goodman has qualified for the English Schools Athletics Championships by cutting his 1500m personal best to 4:05.59, an improvement of more than six seconds.
This time puts him in the top 20 in the country in the under-17 age group, and only one of this top 20 is younger than Goodman himself. Goodman will now be the sole under-17 representative for Middlesex Schools in this event at the Championships, which are taking place in Gateshead next weekend.
Goodman achieved his qualifying time in an open athletics meeting at Watford on June 18. “It was a really cold night and I started steadily, knowing that there were some fast runners in the race. With 800 to go I started moving up the pack. I pushed harder over the last lap and I was feeling really strong at the end.”
After the English Schools Championships, Goodman hopes to cut his 800m time to under two minutes. He will then take a well-deserved holiday and fortnight’s break from training, before contesting the 1500m event at the National Young Athletes League Final on September 1st. That will effectively bring his track season to a close. Goodman said, “I’m looking forward to next year, when I’ll still be able to compete as an under-17.”