JENNA Blundell is celebrating her first national title after a stunning victory in the English Schools’ Track & Field Championships in Birmingham.

The 18-year-old, from Staverton, shook off the disappointment of not making the Great Britain team for the European Junior Championships in Sweden by winning the senior girls’ 100m hurdles title at the Alexander Stadium.

But Blundell did more than just win a title. She produced a perfect performance to not only record a personal best time of 13.56secs, which puts her joint top of the UK rankings, but also finish 0.67secs clear of her nearest rival, a huge gap for a race of this calibre.

“Honestly I cannot believe I have won,” said Blundell.

“I knew on paper I should have won gold, but I never thought I would pull out a big PB and run a really nice, smooth race. That was the icing on the cake for me.”

Free from the pressure of chasing a qualifying time, Blundell was able to concentrate upon the race, and the former St Laurence School student underlined why she is one of the very best sprint hurdlers in the country.

“I am still gutted not to be at the European Juniors but at least I have shown the selectors what I am capable of,” added Blundell.

“It was also my last appearance at the English Schools’ and I produced my best performance to win my first medal, so that was very nice.”

As Blundell is studying at college in north Bristol she was wearing the colours of Avon, as was Avon Valley Runners’ athlete Max Davis, who attends school in Bath.

Davis was a selectors’ pick as he had fallen short of the qualifying standard but the AVR star smashed his PB with the best run of his career to date clocking 8mins 25.75secs to win a shock silver medal in the senior boys’ 3,000m.

Davis said: “I was just hoping to make the top 10 as I was only 16th fastest on paper so I’m not sure what happened, I can’t believe it."

Davis bravely took the lead at the bell and with a sub-60 seconds last lap shook off all but eventual champion Kian Davies, of Lancashire.

“When he finally came by me in the home straight, I got scared as I was thinking others would follow as I had no idea who was still there,” added Davis.

“But I held on for my first championship medal in what is certainly my best-ever performance.”

The Wiltshire squad also won two golds from the Salisbury pair of Bea Wood (inter girls’ 1,500m) and Molly Hole (inters high jump), while another Salisbury athlete, Anna Merritt, was runner-up in the inter girls’ hammer.

Locally, there were two excellent bronzes for St Augustine’s Catholic College student Rory Howorth and Sheldon School’s Owen Merrett.

As a multi eventer, Howorth won an English Schools’ title last year but competing in an individual event for the fifth time, he earned a maiden podium with a deserved third place.

In contrast, Merrett is an out-and-out hammer thrower and as one of the youngest throwers in the field, he performed impressively to finish third.

To complete a good day for coach Matt Spicer, fellow Sheldon School thrower James Viner finished seventh.

A further four Wiltshire athletes impressed to make the top six of their respective events. Malmesbury School’s Willa Gibb was fourth in the inter girls’ 80m hurdles clocking a PB of 11.57secs, and Bradon Forrest’s Amy Warre was fourth in the junior long jump.

There were also fifth places for Dauntsey’s Ophelia Pye in the junior girls’ 300m and Corsham School’s Theo Spurrell in the junior javelin, improving his PB by over three metres to 49.73.

With another seven athletes making the top 10, it was a good championships for the county.

Wiltshire athletes at English Schools’ Championships

Senior girls – Long jump: 13 Robyn Ellison 5.25; Javelin: 15 Ottilie Knight 35.46.

Inter girls – 1500: 1 Beatrice Wood 4:31/67; 80H: 4 Willa Gibb 11.57; hts: Abbey Littlejohns 13.52; High jump: 1 Molly Hole 1.73; Long jump: 18 Gabriella Kirkham 5.15; Javelin: 10 Megan Galpin 39.37; 18 Lucy Wilkinson 32.63; Hammer: 2 Anna Merritt 54.96.

Junior girls – 300: 5 Ophelia Pye 40.89; 800: s/f: Freya Buglass 2:19.63; hts: Kelly-Marie Marsh 2;20.96; 1500: hts: Alicia Finnis 4:58.29; Long jump: 4 Amy Warre 5.31; 14 Amelia Watling 5.05; 21 Delleah Belgrave 4.83; Javelin: 2 Hannah Lewington (Glos) 39.98; Hammer: 9 Jolie Littlejohns 37.93.

Senior boys – Long jump: 3 Rory Howorth 6.85; Shot: 8 Josh Ricketts 13.19.

Inter boys – 200: s/f: Omario Henry 22.45; hts: Josh Dyer 23.31; 100H: hts: Jake Cover 14.36; 400H: hts: Alex Martin 59.85; 1500 S/C: 8 Patrick Mochan 4:39.36; High jump: 9 Peter Adeosun 1.82; Discus: 10 Mikael Evloev 42.17; Hammer: 3 Owen Merrett 52.03; 7 James Viner 50.64.

Junior boys – 100: hts: Leo Chivers 11.77; Javelin: 5 Theo Spurrell 49.73.