2019 has been something of a mixed year for the clubs Junior Section.
The section has maintained a membership of around 45 young athletes throughout 2019.
We got the year off to a good start with some promising performances from our under 13’s & Under 15’s but did not quite manage to build on that start.
The Section’s coaching coordinator resigned in October 2019. This was a significant setback. It was always going to be difficult losing a coach who had done such a great job in helping to build the Junior Section up over a number of years.
Thanks to the stewardship of the Treasurer and the efforts of the parents committee the Junior Section is in a strong position financially. Our young athletes have also contributed to the section’s good finances by doing a bag pack at Tesco’s.
TRAINING AND COACHING
The Junior Section continues to hold regular Thursday night training sessions at Stadium 2000 which is the mainstay of the sections activities. Our coach and assistant coaches do a great job with organising fun, enjoyable but well structured sessions.
• County Durham Athletics Network.
The section participated in all of the C.D.A.N. events throughout the year ranging from the Under 11’s ‘Sportshall’ event at Sedgefield to the network’s Summer Festival of Athletics.
Our under 13’s & 15’s were victorious in their ‘Sportshall’ competition at Stanley and Crook Juniors were the overall first team in the networks flagship Summer Festival event so they took home two trophies in 2019.
• North East Youth Development League.
Our juniors took part in the N.E.Y.D.L. track and field league for the first time as part of a combined Derwentside/Crook team. This represented a significant step up in the level of competition for our young athletes. We did reasonably well for our first season against some very strong opposition. Unfortunately we did not get the numbers of young athletes out that we had hoped for. There were however some good individual performances with two Crook athletes selected for the North East’s winning team in the Inter-League match against Yorkshire.
Crook Juniors finished in equal fourth place out of six teams in the N.E.Y.D. Division 2 South League but were just one point behind third place Richmond and Zetland at the end of the season.
• North East Harrier League.
Again, there were some good individual performances during 2019.
Crook provided volunteers for all the C.D.A.N. and N.E.Y.D.L. events throughout the year and for the Harrier League cross country at Aykley Heads.
STADIUM 2000 AT SHILDON
Stadium 2000 continues to be the Junior Section’s home base.
We continued to support the attempts to raise funds for improvements to Stadium 2000 including the reinstatement of the throws cage.
Due to works to the running track at Maiden Castle in Durham, Shildon played host to two County Durham Athletic Networks events. Both the Spring and Summer 2019 Athletics Festivals were held at Stadium 2000. Volunteers from Crook responded very well to the events being moved to Shildon.
A throws cage at Shildon would open up the opportunity for a wider range of athletics events [both junior and senior] being held at the stadium.
THE YEAR AHEAD
Two of our assistant coaches are close to completing their Athletics Coach’s courses and thereby becoming fully qualified. This will be a big step forward for the club. We still need to recruit at least one more assistant coach and persuade a couple of more people to join the Parents Committee if we can achieve that then we can look to increase our membership to around the sixty mark.
The club will compete in the N.E.Y.D.L. in the Summer of 2020 and look to get a few more of our young athletes to take part.
25th January 2020