Athletics: ‘Doncaster Mile’ returns to sporting scene

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The Doncaster Mile will make a welcome return to the local sporting scene next week.

The four-lap event will bring down the curtain on Doncaster Athletic Club’s inaugural Endurance & Sprint meeting at the Keepmoat Stadium on Wednesday.

The two races, which are limited to male runners who have clocked 5 minutes 30 seconds and female athletes who have run under 6 minutes 30 seconds, boasts total prize money of £300 with the winner of each race banking £75.

Another predicted highlight at the meeting, which will feature electronic timing and a ‘photo finish’ on a video wall for the first time at the stadium, is the men’s 1500 metres steeplechase.

“The reason that the steeplechase is being run over 1500 metres is that there is the possibility of an attempt on the English record,” said DAC’s Barry Barnes.

“There is talk of several top steeplechasers coming down and Bertie Hougton from our club, who represented England under-20s last year, is also due to compete.”

The meeting gets underway at 6pm with a series of graded 80/100m sprint races. They will be followed by several 1500m steeplechase races and 600m under-13 races and 150m (under-11) and 200m events.

The focus then switches to two under-15 800m races and two under-15 1500m clashes. The penultimate event is 3,000m races for both under-20s (male and female) and senior men and women.

“It’s something that I’ve wanted to do for a long time,” said Barnes.

“I take my training group over to Trafford for their meeting and it is really good meeting with some quality athletes there.

“I wanted to try and get something similar on this side of the Pennines.

“It’s costing us a lot of money for such things as the electronic timing and video wall, but we are hoping for a good take-up on the night although we appreciate that it may take several years to get the event established.

“We are also hoping for a good turn-out of spectators (£1 admission).”

Entry is £5 (£2 for extra events) and interested parties can find details on the club’s website.

Postal entries close on Monday and although athletes will be able to enter on the night there will be a £1 surcharge.