Harris hurls his way to Scottish shot put title
Over the weekend, the FPSG Scottish Athletics Age Groups took place at Grangemouth, with a couple of Chirnside Chasers athletes taking part.
On Sunday, it was the Under 13 and Under 20 age group events – and it would be glossing over the truth to suggest that, when the rains came, it didn’t dampen the enthusiasm of competitors, spectators and officials.
The emphasis at U13 level is as much about getting a taste of competition as making the podium.
And it was definitely unfortunate that the worst of the weekend weather fell on the same day as the youngest local athletes were in action.
After a great early summer for Harris Ross – during which he has starred in the throwing events, firstly by breaking a 20-year old school javelin record and following up by breaking a second record at the Borders Schools Championships a few weeks later – he was ready for the challenge of the taking on the best athletes from Scotland.
First up for the Berwickshire High School pupil was the shot put.
After a steady start, Harris, of Chirnside, found himself in third place after two rounds – but then things clicked.
In rounds four and five, he threw 10.84m and 10.90m which was nearly 50cms further than the next competitor.
This was enough for Harris to take the title of Scottish Athletics Under 13 Shot Put Champion.
His best of 10.90m takes him to the top of the rankings in Scotland and, incredibly, into fifth place for the whole of the UK.
Little over an hour later, he was competing in the javelin.
However, the weather had deteriorated significantly from earlier in the morning.
Throwing into a head wind and with rain falling, it was always going to be difficult.
Despite this, Harris threw a new personal best (PB) of 30.74m, which was enough to take third place and the bronze medal.
Harris is one of the talented throwing group currently coached by Stephen Ross and Alexander McGregor at the club.
Both coaches are delighted at how the group is performing this year.
On Saturday, Kyle Taylor, like Harris, also a Berwickshire High School pupil and a resident of Chirnside, competed in the Under 15 age group in much better conditions.
Having just moved up to this age category, it was a always going to be demanding for Kyle.
However, he finished fifth in the hurdles and eighth in the javelin.