JENNA Blundell has opened a new chapter in her career after winning her first national senior medal.

The Wiltshire junior international sprint hurdler, from Staverton, won bronze at the England Athletics Championships in Manchester on Sunday.

Despite atrocious conditions, Blundell kept her nerve and form to snatch third with a well-timed dip on the line to secure a place on the podium alongside two established senior hurdlers, Alicia Barrett and Jessica Hunter.

“That is my first senior national medal, which is fantastic,” said the 18-year-old.

“Conditions were terrible, so the time wasn’t fast, but that didn’t matter at all.

“It was just great to win a medal and be alongside the likes of Alicia and Jessica on the podium as they are both near the top of the rankings.”

The bronze comes just a couple of weeks after Blundell won gold on her farewell appearance in the English Schools’ Championships so she has enjoyed a terrific spell since falling frustratingly short in her ambition of qualifying for the European Junior Championships.

“I think this bronze again confirmed it did not matter that I missed out on the Euros as I have proved to the selectors that I can perform on the big stage,” said Blundell.

“I just have to make sure in future that I stop focussing on times and concentrate on executing my races as well as I can because the results and times will come from doing that well.

“That is a very positive lesson I have learned from not making the Euros.”

Blundell’s coach, Julie Alexander, has received her own recognition this week for all the hard work she does with her group of athletes from around Wiltshire at Team Bath AC.

Alexander has been invited to the coaching staff with responsibility for the high jump for the Youth Nations Cup in Dublin on Saturday.

WILTSHIRE athletes Peter Adeosun and Owen Merrett played a significant role in helping Team Avon qualify for the National Youth Development League Upper Age Group Finals in Manchester on Sunday, September 8.

Adeosun, who is a student at St Augustine’s Catholic College, was included in the composite team which is drawn from Bristol & West AC, Team Bath AC – his own club – North Somerset and Yate & District AC.

Adeosun has already enjoyed a good season and was recently in action for Great Britain at the International Catholic School Games in Romania, where he finished fifth equal in the high jump and seventh in the 100m.

On Sunday at the regional finals in Yate, he focussed on the high jump and delivered maximum points with a winning leap of 1.85m.

Chippenham-based thrower Merrett competes for Yate & District AC and served up maximum points in the U17 men’s B hammer (54.85m) and javelin (41.80m).

Adeosun was the only Team Bath athlete to win an A event but there were also victories in the U20s age group for the Chippenham-based pair of Ellery Cole in the B 800m in 2:02.26 and Femi Akinbobola in the B 400m hurdles in 63.64secs plus Gabriella Holt in the B discus with 21.41m.

In addition, the women’s 4x400m relay team, which included Hardenhuish School student India Ibbotson, won in 4:06.71.

In the U17s age group there were also B event wins for Kiran Carter in the high jump (1.70m), Mia Bates in the 300m hurdles (48.14secs), Abby Rucker in the triple jump (8.67m), Sophie Harrison in the shot (9.12m) and javelin (27.35m) and the women’s 4x300m relay, which included Sophie Moore and Mia Bates, in 2:59.8.

Second places went to Ben Game in the U20s B 100m (11.65secs), Cole in the 400m hurdles A (58.16secs), Becci Ousby in the U20s 100m hurdles A (18.80secs), Jake Cover in the U17s 100m hurdles A (14.33secs), William Scammell in the U17s long jump B (5.65m) and Charlotte Longden in the U17s long jump B (4.36m).