Athletics: GB honour for Doncaster Athletic Club’s Bertie Houghton

Bertie Houghton
Bertie Houghton

Bertie Houghton is Doncaster Athletic Club’s latest Great Britain Under-20 international.

The 19-year-old University of Sheffield student ran the 3,000m steeplechase as part of the Great Britain & NI junior team contesting the annual Loughborough International meeting.

Coached at the Keepmoat Stadium club by Barry Barnes since his early teens, Houghton competed against senior steeplechasers representing England, Scotland and Wales as well as British Universities and Loughborough teams.

Houghton (pictured above) made his international debut last year when representing England Under-20s at fell running in the Lake District.

Earlier in the year he had finished second in the senior steeplechase at the English Schools’ Championships.

“Bertie is hitting the high spots at the right time,” said Barry.

“Hopefully he’ll go on to win a senior Great Britain vest in the future.

“When Bertie first joined me he’d do the sessions but he loved playing hockey and that was probably his main sport.

“It wasn’t until he was about 15, after he’d had a growth spurt, that he started to show some of the potential that he had and started to do some quality sessions.

“Bertie is a role model to the training group, both on and off the track,” he added.

“Lads like Callum Wilson and Elliott Tong both see what Bertie has achieved in the sport and how he’s gone about it.

“They both know when Bertie first came down he wasn’t even the best in the group; that was Nick Beastall.

“Unfortunately Nick, who was also a footballer, picked up a few injuries and that affected his development in athletics.

“Had it not been for the injuries he could have been where Bertie is today.”