26th June 2021
BRADSHAW SEALS BRITISH RECORD AS 16 ATHLETES SECURE OLYMPIC PLACES
Day two of the Müller British Championships was dominated by Holly Bradshaw (Scott Simpson, Blackburn) with her pair of British pole vault records. They sealed her Olympic selection but there were also big wins for Dina Asher-Smith, CJ Ujah, Lawrence Okoye, Tom Gale, Josh Kerr, Jodie Williams and Scott Lincoln who will also be on the plane to Japan, as they were included within the 16 athletes to confirm Olympic Games spots today.
Bradshaw earned $5000 for her British record of 4.90 metres which revised her previous best of 4.87m. She entered the competition at 4.55m, which she cleared second time around. That would have been enough to win her ninth title – and seventh successive victory – but she didn’t stop there.
Bradshaw cleared 4.70m with her second leap before moving up to 4.83m and comfortably went over the mark that broke her previous outdoor record which was set this year.
That still left her nine-year-old 4.87m indoor mark as her PB but, while the 5000m was in action, she sailed over 4.90m which puts the double Olympic top six-placer third in the world rankings for 2021.
A delighted Bradshaw said: “I knew I was in good shape, and I broke a nine-year record so I feel I am in the shape of my life. It’s a great place to be so relaxed and it was a nice environment in Manchester, and I just had to do my thing.”
Under-23 Molly Caudery (Stuart Caudery, Thames Valley) set a season’s best of 4.45m to take silver while Sophie Cook (Scott Simpson, Halesowen) took bronze with 4.25m.
The major track attention was on world 200m champion Dina Asher-Smith (John Blackie, Blackheath & Bromley) in the 100m as she clocked 10.97 (1.2) to seal the victory and her place in Tokyo.
2017 European indoor champion Asha Philip (Steve Fudge, Newham) was second in a season’s best 11.16 to confirm her Olympic spot, while Daryll Neita (Rana Reider, Cambridge Harriers) was third in 11.21.
Earlier in the day, Asher-Smith had broken the stadium record with a time of 10.91 in the semi-finals.
The men’s 100m final had a dramatic opening when European champion Zharnel Hughes (Glen Mills, Shaftesbury) was disqualified for a false start. The rerun was easily won by CJ Ujah (Ryan Freckleton, Enfield) in an Olympic qualifier 10.05 to ensure he will be on the plane to Tokyo.
Ujah, who has had back injury problems, said: “It is more relief to put in three races over the weekend. I’m really happy.”
The other medallists were Eugene Amo-Dadzie (Steve Fudge) in 10.27 and former world junior 200m champion Jona Efoloko (Clarence Callender, Sale), who ran a PB of 10.30 to just edge the bronze.
The men’s 1500m final started cagily but the finishing speed was electric. Edinburgh AC clubmates Josh Kerr and Jake Wightman (Geoff Wightman) ran 51 last laps and 37 seconds for the last 300m as Kerr battled to the line in 3:40.72 to win by just five hundredths of a second. The pair had both finished top six in the World Championships at Doha and will now go to Japan next month as the leading British pair.
In third, former European under-20 champion Jake Heyward (Mark Rowland, Cardiff) was close behind in third in 3:42.41.
European Team Championships 3000m winner Revee Walcott-Nolan (Luton) came late to win in 4:08.41 to just get past Erin Wallace (Andy Young, Giffnock North) who ran 4:08.52 as both ran 62 last laps.
Neither of the first two have the time for the Olympic Games but third-placer Katie Snowden (Daniel Stepney, Herne Hill) does and she led into the straight and finished a close third in 4:08.62.
There was a big shock in the men’s 110m hurdles final as 21-year-old America-based NCAA finalist Tade Okoro (Caryl Smith-Gilbert, Windsor Slough Eton and Hounslow) won in a huge PB and stadium record of 13.38. Consistent Dave King (Tim O’Neil) Plymouth), a three-time champion, was second in 13.51. Neither of the first two have the very tough 13.32 standard.
Third-placer Andrew Pozzi (Santiago Antunez, Stratford-upon-Avon), who hit a few hurdles to disrupt his rhythm, does have the time but did not confirm his automatic selection as he ran 13.54.
Jessica Turner (Nick Dakin, Amber Valley) ensured she will be in Tokyo as she won the women’s 400m hurdles final in a near PB of 54.83. It was her fifth national medal but first title. Joining her in Japan will be European bronze medallist Meghan Beesley (Benke Blomkvist, Birchfield) who was second in a season’s best of 55.80. Defending champion and UK leader at 54.74 Jessie Knight (Marina Armstrong, Windsor) was third in 55.91.
The women’s 400m lived up to its billing as European Indoor bronze medallist, Jodie Williams (Ryan Freckleton, Herts Phoenix) looked majestic to win in 51.01 to miss her PB by just a hundredth of a second.
It was close for second to seal the other automatic spot as NCAA fourth-placer Nicole Yeargin (USC) found a 51.26 and just caught Ami Pipi (Linford Christie, Enfield) but her 51.33 did better the Olympic standard of 51.35 again.
Jodie’s sister Hannah (Glyn Hawkes, Herts Phoenix) was fourth in a big PB of 51.60.
The men’s 400m was won by Niclas Baker (Piotr Spas, Crawley) who excelled to win easily in a PB 46.05. Cameron Chalmers (Matt Elias, Guernsey) was second in 46.19 and Michael Ohioze (Dan Tomlin, Shaftesbury) third in 46.42. None of the athletes hold the Tokyo qualifying standard.
The men’s 5000m final was missing top-ranked Marc Scott, who had already qualified for the 10,000m in Tokyo. With the sun at its strongest the race was slow and tactical and the athletes were through 3000m in 8:24.36 with 17 still in contention.
Gradually the pack was whittled down and when Andy Butchart (Barry Fudge, Central) kicked in a sub 60 second to the bell only four athletes stayed close.
Butchart, needing a top two spot to guarantee his selection for Tokyo kicked hard down the backstraight but was unable to repel NCAA 10,000m champion Patrick Dever (Andy Bibby) who sped past in the last 100 metres to win in 13:37.30 to complete a 55 last lap and 2:27 final kilometre.
Tokyo-bound Butchart, who was sixth in Rio, was second in 13:38.16 and Jack Rowe (Aldershot) was third in 13:38.81.
The women’s steeplechase looked a simple two-way battle, with top-ranked Aimee Pratt (Vicente Modahl, Sale) leading until the last lap when Lizzie Bird (Shaftesbury) powered past to win in 9:35.56 from Pratt’s 9:39.72 and ensured the pair will meet up again in Tokyo. Under-23 Sarah Tait (Linda Smith, Lasswade) was third in 10:03.58.
The women’s hammer was the first field event final of the Championships to be contested and it was all decided in the final round.
US-based and top-ranked Tara Simpson-Sullivan (Robert Halliwell, Wigan) produced a sixth throw of 67.38 to overhaul defending champion Jessica Mayho (John Pearson, Birchfield) who was leading with a third round 67.08m and Mayho responded just short with the very final throw of the Championships which landed at 66.84m. Rachel Hunter (Henry Hunter, North Ayrshire) took bronze with a season’s best of 65.46m.
Naomi Ogbeta (Tom Cullen, Trafford) dominated the women’s triple jump, winning her fifth successive title having the six longest leaps and a best of 14.04 (2.0).
Under-20 Temi Ojora (Nick Newman, Windsor), and brother of 110m hurdles winner Tade, was second with 13.25m and Lia Stephenson (John Herbert, Thames Valley) third with 12.82m.
Lawrence Okoye (John Hillier, Croydon) won his first national title for nine years in the men’s discus with a first round 61.71m throw, and with a 67.13m Olympic qualifier from earlier in June, he will return to the Olympics nine years after making the London final.
Four-time champion Nicholas Percy (Zane Duquemin, Shaftesbury) took silver with 60.17m and Greg Thompson (Neville Thompson, Shaftesbury) bronze with 58.31m.
Tom Gale (Denis Doyle) also confirmed his team place for the Olympics with a win the men’s high jump with a first-time clearance of 2.24m.
Defending champion Joel Khan (Deidre Elmhirst, Worcester) was second with a 2.21m leap while David Smith (Paul Harrison, Shaftesbury) won bronze on countback.
The men’s long jump was one of the closest contests of the day, with just four centimetres covering the four medallists.
Alex Farquharson (Andy Vincent, Coventry) won on countback with a 7.69m leap backed up by a 7.54m to defeat James Lelliott (Brian Camp, Bournemouth) who had a second best of 7.41m to back up his 7.69. Defending champion Reynold Banigo (Lukasz Zawila, Sale) was third with 7.65m.
Scott Lincoln (Paul Wilson, York) dominated the men’s shot with a 20.22m throw and he sealed his Tokyo selection and he won by over three metres. Patrick Swan (Mo Pearson, Cornwall) was second in 16.98m and Daniel Cork (Malcolm Wallace, Newport) third with 16.61m.
There was a great men’s javelin contest as Daniel Bainbridge (Michael McNeill, Shaftesbury) produced a last-round 72.66m to pip Joe Harris (Manx), who threw a centimetre less in the fifth round. Greg Millar (Michael McNeill, Birchfield) was a close third in 71.90m.
In the Decathlon, after needing medical treatment for a groin cramp at the end of day one’s 400m, the former European Indoor Heptathlon bronze medallist Tim Duckworth (Toby Stevenson, Liverpool) returned on day two to win the 110m hurdles in a season’s best 14.59 and extend his lead to 284 points.
Duckworth kept the good results going with a 41.16m discus throw, though it was AAA of England champion Lewis Church (David Hull, Tonbridge) who had the best throw with 42.21m. After seven events Duckworth (5488) led by 278 points.
He then had the best pole vault with 4.94m and followed it up with a 46.66m javelin and 5:05.63 1500m.That gave Duckworth victory in 7447 points with Church second in 7308 and his Tonbridge clubmate Harry Kendall (Mike Corden) third with 7249 points.
Katie Stainton (David Feeney, Birchfield) leads after the opening day of the women’s heptathlon.
Emily Tyrrell (Kevin Skinner, Team Bath) led after the 100m hurdles with a PB 14.02, but it was Ellen Barber (David Feeney, Yeovil), disqualified from the hurdles for a false start, who was the best high jumper with a 1.75m leap. Stainton went into the lead on 1802 points after a 1.69m leap.
Stainton had a huge lead overnight on 3409 points as she finished with season’s bests of 12.02m in the shot and 24.38 in the 200m.
Natasha Smith (David Feeney, Birchfield) is second on 3190 and Ella Rush (Michael Baker, Amber Valley) third with 3091 points.
There were some ultra-competitive men’s 800m heats, with just 0.6 of a second covering the eight qualifiers for Sunday’s mouth-watering final.
British indoor 800m record-breaker and three-time champion Elliot Giles (Jon Bigg, Birchfield) won his heat in the fastest time of 1:47.28 from European indoor medallist Jamie Webb (Adrian Webb, Liverpool) on 1:47.61.
Heat one was won by reigning European U20 champion Oliver Dustin (Graeme Martin, Border) in 1:47.74 from Ben Pattison (Dave Ragan, Basingstoke) on 1:47.87 while heat two went to defending champion Daniel Rowden (Woodford Green Essex Ladies) in 1:47.49 from 2015 champion Kyle Langford (Jon Bigg, Shaftesbury) with 1:47.55.
Joshua Lay (Anthony Love, Rugby) and Finley McLear (Exeter) in 1:47.76 and 1:47.88 and respectively took the fastest losers places.
The big names all got through the women’s 800m heats, too. UK leader Jemma Reekie (Andy Young, Kilbarchan) was fastest with 2:01.46 and she was followed home by Adelle Tracey (Craig Winrow, Guildford) in 2:01.93.
European 1500m champion Laura Muir (Andy Young, Dundee Hawkhill) won her heat easily in 2:05.41 from Ellie Baker (Jon Bigg, Shaftesbury) on 2:05.68.
Alex Bell (Andrew Henderson, Pudsey) won heat three in 2:05.79 from European Indoor champion Keely Hodgkinson (Trevor Painter, Leigh) on 2:06.03.
The two fastest non-automatic qualifier slots went to European U20 champion Isabelle Boffey (Luke Gunn, Enfield) with 2:01.96 and her predecessor as European U20 winner Khahisa Mhlanga (Mick Judd, Herts Phoenix) with 2:06.56.
In the men’s 400m hurdles Efe Okoro (Tony Hadley, Birchfield) was easily fastest with 50.42 to win heat four.
Other heats winners were defending champion and European Team Championships runner-up Alastair Chalmers (Matt Elias, Guernsey) in 51.65, 2020 400m champion Alex Knibbs Nick Dakin, Amber Valley) in 52.06 and UK ranking-topper Chris McAlister (Marina Armstrong, Thames Valley) in 51.85.
Joining them in what should be another good final are non-automatic qualifiers Jacob Paul (Marina Armstrong, Windsor) in 51.13, Under-20 Adam Booth (Graeme Gourlay, Poole) in 51.84, Samuel Clarke (Robert Smith, Cambridge and Coleridge) in 52.07 and Jason Nicholson (Janice Kaufman, Gateshead) in 52.51.
The 400m wheelchair race was won by Nathan Maguire (Steven Hoskins, Kirkby) in 49.78 from Mo Jomni (Jenny Archer, Weir Archer Academy) in 51.70 and Dillon Labrooy (Jenny Archer, Weir Archer Academy) in a time of 53.74.
T38 100m European champion Thomas Young (Joseph McDonnell, Charnwood) won the 100m men’s mixed class in 11.23 (-1.3) ahead of T47 European medallist, Ola Abidogun (Steve Thomas, Horwich) in 11.42 and Shaun Burrows – T38 400m silver medallist from Bydgoszcz last month – in 11.91.