18th June 2017
Barrett in record-breaking form at England U23/U20 Championships
Alicia Barrett (coach: Toni Minichiello) showcased that she is shaping up well for the European Junior Championships after she set a blistering British junior record over the 100m hurdles on the second day of the England U23 and U20 Championships in Bedford.
Barrett, who is currently ranked first in Europe, clearly meant business from the word go, breaking the British record of 13.15 in an immaculately executed heat in 13.07 (+0.5) before matching her record in the final into a -0.8 headwind.
The 18-year-old reflected: “I’m not great at starting to I wasn’t really happy with that. I then went and caught the first hurdle with my trail leg so after that I was just thinking ‘trail leg, trail leg’. I didn’t really think I’d get the record but I knew coming here, and given the conditions, that I was in good shape.”
Elsewhere, Cameron Chalmers (James Hillier) continued to show the depths his immense talent as he dominated the U23 men’s 400m field and took gold in a PB of 45.64.
The Guernsey-based athlete held a marginal lead as he entered the top bend before his greater back-end strength came to the fore, pulling away from former British junior international Elliot Rutter (Tony Hadley), who dipped below 47.00 for the first time with a 46.97 PB for silver.
With three sub-46 times in 2017 Chalmers sits third in the UK and in Europe at U23 level, placing him well with Bydgoszcz on the horizon.
Post-final he said: “It’s really good. The weather was nice today and I’ve been running really well. I’ve just been chipping away at my personal bests and I’m just trying to gear up to the European U23s. You need to be running low-45s to be in with a shout of winning that. That’s what I’m aiming for and building up to. It’s going to plan so far.”
Fresh off the back of a PB last weekend in Geneva, Jacob Paul (Marina Armstrong) produced the second fastest time of his career in the U23 400m hurdles, winning gold in 50.07 ahead of Jack Lawrie (Unknown) who smashed his lifetime best in second with 50.25 to gain qualification for Bydgoszcz.
Paul, who is second in the European U23 rankings over 400m hurdles, said: “Having Jack on the lane outside me, I knew he goes off quick so – obviously as much as you’ve got to run your own race – I kept one eye on him and one on my hurdles. I knew if I kicked the bend and finished strong like I usually do I had the confidence I could take it. And really today was about getting top two and qualifying for the Euro U23s.”
Tom Gale (Denis Doyle) and Joel Khan (Deirdre Elmhirst) treated fans to an enthralling high jump contest as the pair traded clearances before Gale of Bristol & West took the title with a 2.18m jump ahead of Khan’s European U23 qualifier of 2.16m.
Shannon Hylton (Ryan Freckleton) led a one-two-three of athletes under the U23 200m standard of 23.45, clocking 23.20 (+0.4) ahead of Finette Agyapong (Coral Nourrice) in second and her twin sister Cheriece (Freckleton) in third.
At junior level, Alastair Chalmers (Dale Garland) – younger brother of 400m champion Cameron – was delighted to smash his 400m hurdles personal best with 52.06, leaving him just outside the 52.00 qualifying time for Grosseto, while on the flat, Owen Richardson (John Davis) dipped inside the European junior standard with a personal best of 47.23.
Continuing where he left off from his 100m title, Romell Glave (Paul Weston) went under 20 seconds for the first time in his career in the 200m semi-final with 20.95 (-0.1) before returning and claiming a sprint double in 21.08 (+0.4) which may well be sufficient to see him selected for the Commonwealth Youth Games in the Bahamas next month.
In the 10,000m walk Cameron Corbishley (Andi Drake) clocked a championship record of 41:37.44 as he finished a clear winner of the U23 race which ran concurrently with the U20s which Chris Snook (Verity Snook) won in 46:18.98. Unfortunately Callum Wilkinson (Martin Rush) was disqualified mid-race.
Jess Turner (Nick Dakin) had a clear run for gold in the women’s U23 400m hurdles race as she took the title and a guaranteed spot on the British team in 57.68 ahead of Lina Nielsen’s (Frank Adams) 58.87 in second.
The shorter sprint hurdles at U23 level saw Yasmin Miller (Robert Smith), IAAF World Junior Championship finalist from 2014, turn up in top form, running 13.23 (+0.4) in the final to equal her personal best and shore up her place in the British team heading to Poland, having earlier run a windy 13.16 (+2.3).
Over the flat 400m, world junior finalist Hannah Williams (Colin Gaynor) booked her place in the British U20 team with a win in 53.66 while Kelsey Stewart (Ken Hogg) of Aberdeen ran a big PB of 53.63 in the U23 for gold.
Neil Gourley (Ben Thomas) of Glasgow City came out victorious in a fight down the home straight to win the U23 1500m title, edging it from James West (Mark Hookway/George Gandy) and pre-race favourite Robbie Fitzgibbon in a winning time of 3:44.26. Each of the trio have the qualifying standard of 3:41.00.
European junior silver medallist from 2015 Jacob Fincham-Dukes (Zivile Pukstiene) landed back on British soil just days after competing in the NCAAs and his 7.56m (+1.0) was sufficient to rubberstamp his place on the U23 team.
U23 pole vaulter Lucy Bryan (Alan Richardson) took gold with a 4.20m winning vault after achieving the necessary height of 4.30m indoors this year.
Markhim Lonsdale (Keith Lonsdale) and Ben Greenwood (Catriona Helen Tavendale) had both achieved the European junior 800m standard, and they completed a one-two to book seats on the plane to Grosseto.
Daniel Rowden (Richard Thurston) of Woodford Green Essex Ladies fought off a late surge from Sean Molloy (Hookway) with a winning time of 1:48.15 in the U23 800m.
Having won the 1500m on day one, Jemma Reekie (Andy Young) returned to complete a championship double in the 3000m, crossing the line in 9:37.21.
Discus thrower George Evans (Colin McCulloch) did what was necessary to secure qualification for the British junior team with a best throw of 55.26m, but admitted he was frustrated by his overall performance.
Divine Oladipo (John Hillier) had already achieved the U20 discus standard, and did so again with a 50.15m winning throw.
European Youth champion from 2016, Holly Mills (James Coney) won the U20 long jump with a best leap of 6.19m, yet another Commonwealth Youth qualifying standard for the Blackheath & Bromley jumper, while Pippa Earley (John Shepherd) went inside the 13.85 Commonwealth Youth standard again with a PB of 13.61 (+0.5) in the U18 100m hurdles trial.
Full results can be found here.