WEST ATHLETICS: CHESHIRE AC has enjoyed its most successful Cheshire County Track and field Championships.
The Chester and Ellesmere Port-based club collected 27 gold medals at the two-day competition at Macclesfield.
Gareth Preston celebrated a magnificent hat-trick of successes and wrapped up his busy schedule with a memorable appearance in the Under 15 boys' long-jump event.
The Queen's Park High pupil smashed the Cheshire record no fewer than five times during the event and finished with a winning leap of 5.97m - an English Schools' Championship qualifying mark.
Gareth had opened his account on the first day of the event with a grade two time of 24.65 seconds for a 200m victory, to finish just in front of team-mate Andrew Whitton who secured the silver medal in 25.21 seconds.
And Gareth added the 100m gold medal to his collection 24 hours later when he posted an outstanding grade one time of 11.73, which earned the track athlete of the championships award.
Talented duo Stephanie Owens and Sian Kelman were other West Cheshire AC members to attain grade one performances at the event.
Stephanie spun the U15 girls' discus out to a winning mark of 31.55m, which was fractionally short of the county record distance.
But she powered the shot to a new championship best performance the day before when she hit a distance of 10.40m for the gold medal - bettering the previous best of 10.22m.
And Sian produced a grade one leap of 5.23m for victory in the U15 girls long-jump competition. She finished well ahead of her nearest rival and ended up with a distance which was just two centimetres short of a championship best performance, beating bronze medallist and clubmate Ruth Pritchard (4.46m).
Sian also showed her blistering pace later in the day when she secured another gold medal in the 100m in a time of 12.81, in front of third-placed Daisy Flynn-Percy (13.30), Shona Valentine (fifth in 13.57) and Rose Soulsby (eighth in 14.21), who also qualified for the final.
Multiple West Cheshire AC gold medal winners included James Callaghan, Aiden Stoakley, Carl Van Schie, Danielle Bentley, Abbi Kirk and Tom Price.
James started his medal spree with a winning throw of 27.43m in the U17 men's hammer, then added a gold medal-winning throw of 35.52m in the discus and completed his treble with a put of 12.84m in the shot.
Aiden won the U13 boys' long-jump title with a grade three leap of 4.12m, clinched the 100m gold medal with a time of 14.16 and picked up a silver medal in his 200m final.
Carl Van Schie started his gold medal haul with a 2.60m clearance in the U17 men's pole vault and continued his collection with a 1.61m clearance in the high jump, along with a 400m hurdles time of 61.64 seconds.
Danielle headed a West Cheshire AC clean sweep of Sophie Stanton and Kitty Green in the U13 girls' shot event after a winning put of 6.69m, and then won the discus title with a throw of 18.89m.
Abbi provided two sensational sprinting performances, storming to a 75m (11.13) and 150m (20.62) double in the U13 girls age group.
And Tom Price was another double gold medallist in the U17 men's 100m (11.50) and 200m (23.06). Tricia Jackson, Ruth Pritchard, Lauren Hunt, Andrew Whitton, Michael Lyness and Charlotte Roach were other West Cheshire AC members to grab gold.
Tricia won the U20 ladies 400m hurdles in a time of 76.50 seconds; Ruth launched the U15 girls javelin to a winning mark of 20.69m; Lauren won the U17 ladies discus with 30.49m; Andrew grabbed success in the U15 boys triple jump with 11.80m; Michael won the U15 boys discus gold medal with a throw of 26.80m; and Charlotte produced a devastating kick finish to clinch success in the U17 ladies 1,500m in four minutes 53.50 seconds.
Former Whitby High pupil Nicola Gore, representing Liverpool Pembroke Sefton, spun the senior ladies discus to a winning mark of 30.72m and hit a new personal best of 11.35m in the shot for success.
Emma-Leigh Heighway, who lives in Ellesmere Port and attends Neston High School, represented Sale Harriers in the U20 ladies 800m and clocked a personal-best winning time of 2:17.91.
Ex-Tarporley High pupil Will Lowndes scored a grade one victory of 56.63m in the U20 men's hammer representing Liverpool Harriers, hit 40.29m for a win in the discus, and scored a championship best of 15.21m in the shot to earn the field event championship award.
Chester-based Stephanie Blackwell, representing Wirral AC, won the U15 girls 75m hurdles in a time of 12.06 seconds and Welsh junior international Lucy Evans, of Saughall, won the senior ladies 100m and 200m titles with times of 12.54 and 24.79 seconds respectively.
Helsby High School pupil Lawrence Walker, representing Warrington AC, won the U17 men's 1,500m steeplechase title in a time of 4:47.62. nWest Cheshire AC have switched their Three Counties Grand Prix Open track and field meeting scheduled for next Wednesday to the previous day.
The meeting at Stanney Oaks starts at 7pm with entries taken from 6pm.