British Masters Athletics Multi-Events Weekend 2016,
Alexander Stadium, Birmingham
30 and 31 July 2016


If it's true that there is no peace for the wicked, the nuns who ran my infants school all those years ago must have been very right, when they told me what a naughty boy I was!

This was a very busy weekend indeed, maybe not so much for the sheer number of athletes involved, but because of the number of events that were, through much of the weekend, happening simultaneously in the stadium. Being the only accredited photographer there, and being the only one there for both days of the weekend, I needed to make some hard decisions about what, realistically, I could cover and reward with some (I hope) decent photos. Oh, and on top of this, I was scheduled to race twice on the Saturday in the BMAF Summer Classics events. As if just photographing this weekend wasn't difficult enough for a solo cameraman….

The backbones of the weekend were the British Masters decathlon and heptathlon championships. The Summer Classics are a sizeable programme of track events added around this on the Saturday, given that things like officials, electronic timing, etc were all available to be called upon when the multi-eventers were not requiring them. After a stumbling start in the last two years, the Classics seem to be really taking off, too.

On the Sunday, the track was also used for the British Masters 10,000 metres championships. That meant three age-group events plus the British Masters 10,000 metres track walk championship, spread through most of the day, while the decathletes and heptathletes toiled away at their second day's events.

And then, on top of all of even that, was the one day British Masters Throws Pentathlon, on the Saturday. It was there, I regret to say, that yet again, I had to draw a line. While the throwers were getting into their stride, as it were, I was getting into mine, preparing for two sprint races in the Classics and trying to catch what I could from the early decathlon and heptathlon action. Remember that these multi-event championships are mostly played out in individual Masters age-group bands. Therefore, every event on the track, for example, usually meant five or so separate races to be photographed. So, I simply could not cover the throws pentathlon as well. It seemed meaningless just to shoot a few token frames when chance permitted.

When sorting the hundreds of photos I took over the weekend, it made sense to break them down into a series of different galleries, and I've used these to organise the photos on this site, as you'll see below. It also saves you, the viewer, a lot of wading through shots of events you're not interested in, to find what you want. I openly admit that, while I covered all the decathlon action and all bar one of the heptathlon events, I was simply unable to shoot every age group in every event. The photos you see are a very representative selection of the weekend's action, nevertheless. Gone are the days when it was possible to shoot every athlete in every event at a meeting like this!

Enough of apologies. From my part, thank goodness this mammoth weekend won't now come around until September next year! I'll have recovered from it by then!


British Masters Decathlon Championships 2016

Saturday's photos are here

Sunday's photos are

British Masters Heptathlon Championships 2016

Photos covering both days are here. (Sorry, but I missed one event on Saturday)

British Masters 10,000 metres Track Championships 2016

Photos from all of the races, including the track walk are here

British Masters Summer Classics Track Events 2016

I raced in the 100 metres in the Classics (a satisfying 2nd place against mostly much younger opposition!) and I warmed up for the 200 metres. However, when the lane draw was announced, I suddenly realised I'd not signed the declaration sheet for the 200, and I wasn't listed. Ah well, at least I got to photograph it. I'll not make a mistake like that again in a hurry.

Photos of the Classics races I managed to photograph are