Youth Development League (YDL) – Match 2 – Lewes

Match 2 in the YDL series saw Robbie go head to head with New Forest Juniors’ Alex Forster for the fourth time in as many weeks, it was about the race, but almost more important was the time, with that English Schools qualifying time still not met there was an element of “Just Go For It” about the race. Robbie did just that, completing the first 400m in 66 seconds, well on track to meeting the time, but the laps slowed slightly laps 2 and 3 taking 70 and 74 seconds respectively leaving Robbie 50 seconds to complete the last 300m, he pushed hard and really went for it, finishing that last 300m in 51 seconds, or to be more precise 50.9 seconds. Very close, but 0.9 seconds outside the time is still outside the time. A great run and a great win now we need to look to Watford open for a qualifying time so well done Robster, and good luck for Wednesday at Watford.

1500m at Lewes - YDL Match 2

1500m at Lewes – YDL Match 2

Hampshire Track and Field Championships 2014 – Day 2

Day 2 of the Hampshire Championships and Robbie is officiating again, but the race of the day is the 1500m, which possibly carries a little bit more importance than the 3000m as it will feed the English Inter-County Championships. Originally scheduled as a single heat followed by a final, drop outs on the day caused a rethink by the officials and the race was reorganised in to a straight final. After planning for a heat, this meant a quick rethink by Robbie on his tactics, and he pretty much went for the same tactics as he did in the 3000m, i.e. Get out there, run like mad and hope he burns out the opposition. Great Plan 🙂

The race held completely different opponents to the 3000m, but a similar race style with Robbie leading from the front, Alex Forster took up the shoulder sitting role and kept hard on Robbie right up to the 1200m point, where Robbie started to pull away, and Alex started to slow having given his all and Robbie seeing the clock kicked with a hope to hit the elusive 4’22” English Schools qualifying time, unfortunately he didn’t make it and Alex was knocked back in to 3rd place by Patrick Whelan from Southampton, but not making the qualifying time was a minor and almost insignificant point on the day, Robbie got a 1500m PB of 4’23”, won a second gold for the weekend and was, for the second time in two days awarded the title of  County Champion, this time at 1500m.

Once again, well done Robbie.

Podium Line up for the Hampshire Championship 1500m

Hampshire Track and Field Championships 2014 – Day 1

Day 1 of the Hampshire Championships comes to a close, both Robbie and I have dipped our hands in to the “Officials” role today, along with Robbie’s outing in the 3000m. After coming second last year to Jack Boswell, and with Jack now running in the age group above Robbie was expecting to have an easy win today, that thought direction changed though once we saw the field of runners competing, with a number of XC rivals stepping up to the 3000m track challenge too. The plan? Go as fast as possible and try to burn out the opposition, a plan that worked exceptionally well, Zac Mahamed stuck to Robbie like glue for the first 3 laps, making a push to take the lead in the fourth, his 1st place lasted roughly 200m before Robbie took the mantle up again and started to pull away within a lap the gap was growing substantially and the supporters on the sidelines could see a win in the offing. Despite a fairly obvious kick in speed at the bell from Zac, Robbie continued to maintain the gap between them, eventually winning the championship 3000m in 9’29.49″ less than 4 seconds of the Championship record.

Hampshire 3000m Champion 2014

Hampshire 3000m Champion 2014


This is Robbie’s first time as a County Champion, so a very pleased, if very tired young Coupland returned to Fleet. Just time to rest up for tomorrow’s 1500m heats and race. Well done Robbie!

Aldershot District Schools – County Qualifiers

Friday 16th May see’s Robbie at Reading Stadium preparing for his first major Schools event of the track season. Robbie has been selected to represent Calthorpe Park school in the Junior 1500m race, supported by Calthorpe’s Matt Farmiloe and facing up against fellow AFD athlete, Billy Smith (Robert Mays School).

The boys warm up and line up, after a m orning of sweltering heat there is something of a breath of fresh air as clouds slowly cover the sun, dropping the temperature, not by much, but by enough to make the distance racers a little more comfortable.

From the get go, Robbie leads the race by a convincing margin, giving him little, if any competition. Finishing first and becoming the Aldershot District Champion at 1500m in 4’29”.

Robbie leads the 1500m's in convincing style.

Robbie leads the 1500m’s in convincing style.

First 3000m of 2014

Another gloriously sunny day in Portsmouth see’s Robbie run his first 3000m of the 2014 summer season, with a current PB of 9’53.56″ to beat and an ambitious season target of 9’25” in mind, Portsmouth seemed like a great opportunity to get a good foot in the door for the season. Unfortunately the organisers decided to set the race on age, not ability so once again Robbie found himself out front on his own trying to set a PB. A PB was set, and a great improvement shown, but not close enough to his season target to make him happy. Finishing in 9’41.82″, knocking off approximately 12 seconds from his PB was still a great start, let’s hope he gets a chance to put a good paced time in at some point this summer.

Running for the bell, 2600m and looking good.

Running for the bell, 2600m and looking good.

Youth Development League (YDL) – Match 1 – Portsmouth

Saturday 3rd May saw Robbie’s first club competitive race of the summer season, selected to compete for AFD in both the 1500m (his ideal race) and as one of 4 in the 4 x 300m  Relay. A good day for AFD coming 4th overall and doing particularly well in the middle distance events. After leading the 1500m for at least 1100m Robbie ultimately finished 2nd to Surrey runner Harry Boyd. The time was good, as was the race with Robbie coming in 10th’s of a second slower than his PB in 4’26.0″. IN his first ever outing as a 4 x 300m relay runner Robbie ran an excellent 3rd leg in approximately 45″ helping AFD to 1st place in the event.

Robbie kicking in to full speed in the 4 x 300m Relay.