Callum Wilkinson convincingly won the 5,000m walk at the England Athletics Under-17 Championships at Bedford Stadium on Sunday.
Taking the lead with 500m to go, the King Edward VI School sixth former strode to his first national title in a time of 23 minutes 28 seconds, thus ending the two-year unbeaten record of Cameron Corbishley (Maidstone AC), who finished second in 23.56.
Wilkinson has played second fiddle to Corbishley throughout the year, but made no mistake on this occasion.
Deeming his rival’s pace too fast in the opening laps, he had the confidence to let him go and was 30 metres adrift at halfway point, shortly after which he started to reel him back as he tired.
Wilkinson’s final target race of the season is the English Schools 5,000m at Birmingham on September 22, which is likely to be the toughest of the year as his Maidstone rival endeavours to retain that title and reassert his mantle as the country’s leading under-17 walker.