Alastair Aitken
Alastair Aitken
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NATIONAL INSURANCE CHAMPIONSHIPS (JUNE 2013)

On Wednesday Evening, June the 19th,  was the 'Annual National' Insurance Track & Field Championships held at the Millennium Stadium, Battersea. The Championships have been going on for at least ninety years, with only one break last year, because it clashed with people taking a holiday, tacked on to the Diamond Jubilee celebrations. Unfortunately the support for the Championships in the last fifteen or more years has waned and the standard has been on the low side, for most events but, this year, there was a glimmer of hope for the future as organiser, Christine Pates of Senator Insurance & Mike Jeffery, really got things moving. In the Men's and women's competitions. Legal & General, who have supported the Championships from the start won both the Women and Men's Challenge Trophies.
   David Brown, of Royal Sun Alliance, did three events and achieved ' Power of 10' Standards for 45-49 year old's in each of his field marks. Shot 10.17; Discus 30.12 and Javelin 41.64 metres.
   In the 5000m the winner Harry Johnston of Legal & General, did a standard with 16:32.2 to win and the second runner did a standard for 45-49 year old's Luke Armitage, running for Hiscox Underwriters did 16:52.4. Lee Martin of Travellers was third in 16:59.3 and Stuart Fraser of Miller Insurance fourth in 17:12.5.
In twelfth place, ahead of two people half his age, was ex-international, Andy Catton a Director at Millers Insurance Services, who celebrated becoming 60 years of age the day before. Catton has the Championship record for the event of 14:25.4 achieved in 1974! He also has won the Insurance Championships 10,000 on the track ten consecutive times some years ago. His time on a 'little' but hard training recently meant he ran 20:11.06. Considering he had to retire with serious injuries ten years ago that was good!
   Some other notable winners over the years in order to earn their 'Insurance Yellow Vest' for the City Charities Meeting at Motspur Park in those days were 1928 Olympic 400hurdles Gold medallist, Lord Burghley, The Marquis of Exeter, who won the Insurance 220 in the 1930's; Brian Shenton (1950 European Champion) in the sprints in the 1950's: Two other international were outstanding and showed how things were, Sonia Lannaman of the Municipal re holds the 200m Insurance Championship record with 24.5 done in 1974 (This year won by the 100m winner Natasha Queva-Kent of Legal & General in 31.07) and Gladys Taylor (Now Bird) won five events in one afternoon in the 1980's and she is now a Manager of the Woodford Green & Essex Ladies team.

Alastair Aitken

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