Well, we've just returned from a long weekend in Devon, which as well as allowing us to see some very beautiful parts of the south-west , also took in the national schools multi-events champs in Exeter - and all I may say, in glorious weather.
Pippa was competing in the intermediate girls hep and it just goes to show from what happened that a multi event is rather like a football match. Your team can be being battered, but the score remains nil-nil, then in the last minute your goalie scores the winner! Okay I'm being a little far fetched there, but you get the idea. Pippa did not produce some of her best performances in her banker events - the hurdles and the long jump and the 200m to an extent, for example, but ended up second overall. (All credit to Jade O'Dowda who took gold, by some margin and who did dominate possession er, the heptathlon.)
If I recall Pippa went into the 800m in 7th place. She'd been out of the top 10 for most of the action over the two days. She'd managed a 1.53m high jump, in perhaps her least confident discipline, and this in hindsight was the unexpected key to her getting on the podium come the final event. A poor performance in the high jump would have made it virtually impossible to achieve a podium place. Indeed, throughout the competition we all thought that fourth/fifth, and maybe if the gods all-smiled third, would be the highest place she could finish.
However, when you embrace running the 800m (how many multieventers like those last few laps?) there's always an outside chance of making up some positions. Well, that's exactly what the Kingston & Poly athlete did. A first lap of 63sec had me thinking "will she blow up?" Nope, and although she slowed, not unsurprisingly, the clocked stopped at 2.15.12! A new Pb and good enough for a massive 779 points (massive in the context of heptathlon inter girls' 800m running).
As the girls lined up for the presentation we thought that the order must be incorrect. Pippa was to the left of Jade i.e. she she had won the silver medal. How did that happen? Well, she snuck past Amaya Scott, who had a very good day, by one-point (she must rightly be a little disappointed), about a tenth of a second. Pippa's parents, other family and friends and I are still in a bit of a state of shock. We never saw that coming. It's not over to the final whistle in a multi.
However, it is over for this track season for my training squad. We start again mid October. Look out for more updates and training tips and videos.