HAYDEN Bailey soared to second in the UK 800m rankings for U17 men as he smashed his personal best in the British Milers’ Club PB Classic meeting at Millfield School, Street, on Monday evening, writes KEVIN FAHEY.

The 16-year-old Matravers School student from Bratton, near Westbury, scorched to a time of 1mins 54.81secs to slash three seconds off his two-year-old personal best and finish runner-up in the A race.

“I was not expecting that,” said Bailey. “To finally get a personal best after two years gives you a lot of confidence. Sometimes you question yourself and what you are doing when it is not going so well but now I am focussing on what I am doing well.”

It was 12 months ago in the same meeting that Bailey also opened his season encouraging with a time of 1:57.87 as he just missed his personal best of 1:57.81 the previous year. Sadly it wasn’t the launching pad for another big summer.

“At that point I had already got injured a few weeks earlier but I didn’t know at the time it was a stress fracture I my foot,” added Bailey.

“That took four months to finally clear up so it is good to be back now.”

It was a busy 24 hours for Bailey as the previous day he was in action for the composite Team Avon squad in the opening National Youth Development League match as he won the 800m and came runner-up in the 400m, clocking an outdoor best time of 52.01secs.

“To be honest I was disappointed with that 800m as I expected to run quicker but that is just me I suppose,” he added.

Other Wiltshire-based athletes who earned maximum points for Team Avon – drawn from Bristol & West AC, Team Bath AC and Yate & District AC – included Imogen Dawe-Lane (400m hurdles), Sarah Long (400m B) and Caitlin Wosika (1500m steeplechase) while in the field Grace Davies-Redmond (javelin) was also a winner.

UK Youth Development League, Midland Premier South West, Yate – overall teams: 1 Team Avon 707pts; 2 Cardiff AC 602; 3 Team Devon Cornwall 567; 4 Swansea Harriers 512; 5 Cheltenham Harriers 474; 6 West Wales 395.

Selected Team Bath performances, U20 men – 100: 3 Jordan Earley 11.36; B: 2 Jake Burkey 11.69; 200B: 2 Louis Torto 22.98; 4x100m relay: 2 Team Avon 45.46 (Burkey, Kurt Cameron, Earley, Torto).

U17 men – 400: 2 Hayden Bailey 52.01; 800: 1 Bailey 2:03.09; 1500B: 2 Jack Wosika 5:09.10; 3000: 3 Wosika 9:41.61; 100H B: 2 Femi Akinbobola 15.01; 400H: 4 Joel Mattacks 71.49; SP B: 3 Akinbobola 7.85; 4x100m relay: 2 Team Avon 46.96 (Akinbobola); 4x400m relay: 2 Team Avon 3:47.93 (Bailey, Cameron Sprague, Fred North, James Edwards).

U20 women 100: 2 Zoe Mattacks 12.71; 400B: 1 Sarah Long 62.37; 100H: 2 Imogen Dawe-Lane 15.12; B: 2 Mattacks 15.95; 400H: 1 Dawe-Lane 68.90; 1500S/C: 1 Caitlin Wosika 5:19.87; Hammer: 1 Gabriella Holt 41.56; Javelin: 1 Grace Davies-Redmond 34.15; 4x100m relay: 2 Team Avon 52.31 (Mattacks, Dawe-Lane); 4x400m: 2 Team Avon 4:1853 (Long).

U17 women – 800B: 3 Katie Strange 2:49.17; HJ B: 1 Renee Jelf 1.58.

HILPERTON’S Rory Howorth joined a quality field at Millfield School for the Somerset Schools & Open Combined Events Championships.

While conditions were appalling over the weekend Howorth produced a sparkling performance with personal bests in the 400m and long jump, plus a staggering improvement of seven centimetres in the high jump as he cleared 1.77m.

“Rory finished second and is currently ranking number two in the UK,” said coach Julia Alexander.

“I was busy telling Rory to play it safe and come in low at 1.60m in the high jump as it was blowing a gale with torrential rain and without a valid jump it would all be over - and he jumps 1.77.”

Two new junior boys, Ransford Ako’nai and Peter Adeosun, both from St Augustine's School in Trowbridge, competed in the pentathlon on the Saturday. Both were late entries and with little experience in some of the events they both exceeded all expectations out of a field of 34 athletes.

Ako’nai had a massive 5.80 long jump a 1.66 high jump 13.24 hurdles but struggled in the shot and suffered from cramp in the second lap of the 800m still managed to finish fifth overall.

Somerset Schools & Open Combined Events Championships, Millfield School – inter boys octathlon: 1 Evan Campbell (Jersey) 4724pts; 2 Rory Howorth (Wilts) 4690 (LJ: 5.87m; DT: 28.56m; Jav: 36.07m; 400: 52.23secs; 100H: 15.71s; HJ: 1.77m; SP: 10.63m; 1500: 4:14.24); 3 Thomas Britt (Cardiff) 4329. 7 Jonathan Evans (TB) 3372 (5.30m; 25.13m; 30.22m; 58.34s; 16.46s; 1.32m; 11.13m; 5:24.72).

Junior boys pentathlon: 5 Ransford Ako’nai (Wilts Schs) 2217 pts (80H: 13.24s; SP: 8.45m; LJ: 5.80; HJ: 1.66m; 800: 2:42.35); 6 Peter Adeosun (Wilts Schs) 2132 (13.04s; 8.49m; 5.28m; 1.60m; 2:23.52);

Junior girls pentathlon: 1 Molly Hole (Wilts/Salisbury) 2887; 26 Sophie Martin (Wilts/Team Bath) 1866 (75H: 13.35s; SP: 5.94m HJ: 1.39m; LJ: 3.92m; 800m: 3:10.64).

Senior boys decathlon: 11 Kieran Short (Wilts/Marlborough) 4426.