5 July 2016
This week’s European Championships will see the biggest ever British Athletics team travel to Amsterdam in a bid to better the record medal tally of 23 set by 2014’s team in Zurich, Switzerland.
The Championships will see three females from the 98-strong team pull on a British vest at senior level for the first time in a major international competition, each of whom will be looking to lay down a marker in their respective disciplines.
Melissa Courtney (Mark Pauley) – 1500m
Courtney represented the British Athletics team last year in Estonia at the U23 European Championships, finishing tenth in the 1500m field.
The Welsh athlete has taken a near four seconds off her best over the past two years, with her latest revision of 4:07:55 coming at Birmingham’s Diamond League in June. The 22 year-old will be looking to clock another personal best as she aims for a strong performance in Amsterdam.
Sarah McDonald (Bud Baldaro) – 1500m
Birchfield Harrier McDonald has shown promising form in the lead-up to her first senior British call-up, the 22 year-old lowering her personal best to 4:07.18, bettering her previous best set back in 2013 by a near ten seconds. Domestically, the 22 year-old also retained her BUCS indoor title back in February for the second consecutive year.
Coached by the acclaimed and vastly experienced Bud Baldaro, McDonald will be looking to follow in the footsteps of fellow Baldaro product Hannah England, who won 1500m silver at 2011’s world championships.
Jessica Andrews (Josep Carballude) – 10,000m
The 23 year-old makes her senior international bow having previously represented Britain as an U23 at the 2013 European Cross Country Championships in Serbia.
Andrews has undergone something of a re-emergence onto the British scene having relocated to Andorra last year, with May’s 10,000m Olympic Trials seeing the Isle of Wight born athlete secure qualification for Rio in only her second ever competitive 10,000m race with a massive personal best, whilst finishing a comfortable 17 seconds within the Olympic standard time.