Vale of Aylesbury Athletics Club veteran Alan Roberts travelled to Spain for the European Masters Indoor and non-stadia Championships recently.
His first event was the 3,000m “B” Final where he finished 13th in 11.28.42. Although happy with the time he was disappointed to be out sprinted in the last 100m having been comfortably in 12th going into the final lap.
Two days later he competed in the 3,000m walk after which Roberts conceded he was ‘outclassed’ in finishing 11th in 21.03.45.
He was confident having been number one in his age group in the UK but judges were very tough handing out yellow cards in abundance. Alan received two of them and had to modify his style to finish as a third card would have meant disqualification. Three hours later he was back on the track in the 800m heats with a PB of 2:36:26.
Another two days on Alan faced two events which began outdoors with the European 5k road walk Championships where judges were again keen to get their yellow cards out meaning another cautious race in a slower time than anticipated.
A French athlete was disqualified having made the final turn towards the finish. Five hours later it was back on the track for the 1,500m semis where Alan was just a second outside his PB in 5:23:46.
Then finally in the European XC Championships Alan finished 49th in 22.18. A team medal was not an option as his teammates were in the final of the 1,500m race which was held at the same time.