Last week saw students in the senior school participate in the annual Wellington College Tianjin Senior School Sports day, competing in athletics events throughout the whole day. The day got off to a fantastic start with perfect conditions for the long-distance events, seeing competitors pacing themselves over either 1500 or 800 meters. An excellent run from Year 8 Julia (Blucher) saw her take victory in the 800m with a time of 3.31, although fiercely competitive Year 7 Elena (Anglesey) made her work for it and finished only 2 seconds behind her. In the older age groups, after watching the rest of the racers sprint off in the 800m, Jurek (Orange) eventually breezed past them with a composed 2.39 to take the 800m gold medal in his age group. All races were competitive, and the students’ drive and will to show resilience and push themselves was outstanding throughout. Whilst this was going on, Year 12 student Arthur (Wellesley and Benson) was busy setting a new Wellington College record in the high jump, recording a dizzyingly high jump of 1.50m. Superb work, Arthur.
After a well-earned breaktime, pupils took to the field to participate in the javelin, shot put, long and triple jump. With almost two thirds of the school taking part during this time, it was a hugely successful period, with pupils jumping and throwing distances further than they had ever done before, earning a great number of points for their house in doing so. Highlights included a massive 11.6m shot put from Jimmy (Wellesley) and a pair of double gold medals from Selina (Anglesey), for the javelin and the shot put, and Sherry (Orange), for the long and triple jump. It was a very successful field competition for the Orange House, as they brought home 13 of the 40 gold medals on offer, with stand-out athlete, Masa taking 3 of them in the Year 8 girl’s category.
With all the pupils in the school outside for the afternoon’s events, the stage was set for the sprint events. After a fantastic start, Dora (Stanley) finished ahead of her competitors in the 80m sprint, including those in the year above. Another closely fought battle between Orange and Stanley in the Year 12 80m sprint, as Head Boy Elliot (Stanley) managed to hold of Jurek (Orange) to win by 0.4 of a second. A special mention must also go to Nicole (Anglesey), whose dominance of the morning’s field events continued into the afternoon events as she won both the 80m sprint and the 75m hurdles, securing the title of ‘Most Decorated Athlete’ on the day, taking home a whopping 7 medals.
If pupils were tired after a day of competing, it certainly didn’t show in the final event of the day, the 4 x 100m relays. Across all the year groups, every race was close for medal positions. The battle for the gold medal between the Year 12 and 13 boys sticks in my mind; Willy (Orange) and Daniel (Stanley) running the final bend at break-neck speed, both having competed in many other events throughout the day, with Stanley house crossing the finish line half a second ahead. The day concluded with a rare treat for pupils, as the teachers took to the track for the Staff relay race. As the whistle set them off, spectator-enthusiasm levels hit an all-time high as Mr. Williams (Blucher) had to demonstrate his ferocious power to push through the spectators who had somehow found their way into his lane. The rest of the pupils cheered on from the centre of the track, with the Orange house staff leaving the competition in their wake and emerging victorious. It was a brilliant end to a great day; my sincere congratulations to all students who took part in any of the events. The day was a great demonstration and balance of sporting excellence and competitive spirit, and our student’s willingness to participate was on show throughout. Well done all!