On New Year’s Day – this year – Jedburgh athlete Jazmine Tomlinson made history.
Coached by Bruce Scott and John Steede, 18-year-old Jazmine put herself into the record books by emerging the first female winner of the 147-year-old New Year Sprint handicap.
The TLJT (Tweed Leader Jed Track Athletics Club in Jedburgh) runner and betting outsider won the £4000 first prize in sterling style at Musselburgh Racecourse.
Fast forward 12 months and Jazmine is set to defend her title in the same event from a mark of 17 metres.
The heats of the historical event will be staged on the synthetic polymeric track at the Meadowmill Sports Centre, Prestonpans, this Friday (December 30).
The cross ties and final go ahead at Musselburgh racecourse on January 1, 2017, in conjunction with a national hunt horse racing meeting.
Glancing ahead to the forthcoming sprint handicap, which once again has a £4000 winning purse, TLJT coach Bruce Scott said: “The club is looking for
its third New Year sprint winner in a row, as Cameron Tindle won in 2015 and Jazmine Tomlinson this year.
“We have high hopes that two of our young runners, Emily Dagg and Cameron Caldwell, will do well. The pair of them have been training hard and are improving all the time.
“I have been coaching Emily since she was a 10-year-old and she is 17 now. She loves her running. She puts everything into it, from training to running in races, and she reached the final of the last New Year sprint. This was a great achievement for her.”
He added: “Emily has grown in confidence since then and could run even better this time, as she has come on a lot.
“Cameron will be running for the first time as a senior in the sprint. He showed up really well in the summer on the games circuit and, like Emily, has a lot of potential.”
Emily goes from 20 1/4 metres, while Cameron (Caldwell) is off 9 1/2 metres.
Favourites at the moment to get into the winning frame and taste New Year sprint glory are Jordan Charters of Dolphinton (10 1⁄4 metres) and East Kilbride’s Greg Kelly (8 1⁄4 metres).