Street sprints are a hit with youngsters

Linford Christie officiates at the 2015 Street Athletics event in Kirkby.
Linford Christie officiates at the 2015 Street Athletics event in Kirkby.

Young athletes from Ashfield took to the track with former Olympic sprint champion Linford Christie.

The sporting legend, who won 100m gold at the Olympics in 1992, was back in Ashfield for the popular Street Athletics event.

The streets of Kirkby town centre were packed with people watching and cheering on the children and young people who took part in the races.

Councillor Jim Aspinall, Ashfield District Council portfolio holder for health and wellbeing, said; “It was an honour to welcome Linford to Ashfield, to the new plaza in Kirkby-in-Ashfield.

“This event brought a real buzz to the town centre and gave children of all ages and abilities the chance to have a go at athletics with an Olympic legend.”

The Street Athletics event invites youngsters to race against each other over a 60 -metre distance across four age group categories – under 20s, under 17s, under 15s and under-13s

Both Linford and Street Athletics proved to be a big hit in Sutton last year and this year was even busier with more than 100 young people racing, cheered on by a full crowd.

The winners of each age category will now go on to compete in the national finals in Manchester.

The Street Athletics event is part of a programme of Active Ashfield Games 2015 events which have taken place throughout the spring and summer.

Christie, aged 55, is regarded as the greatest sprinter Britain produced.

Although his career ended in controversy when he was banned for testing positive for drugs in 1999, he won 23 major championship medals, including 10 golds, plus 26 national titles, in a 17-year international career.