9th June 2019


The highlight, from a British point of view, at the World Para Athletics Grand Prix in Grosseto was a world record throw from Harrison Walsh (DSW Para Academy) in the F44 shot put.

Walsh’s best of 15.73m in round one of the competition saw him rewrite the record books in Italy.

He also managed another throw of 15.65m within his series which also exceeded his personal best as he placed second in the mixed classification event. This added to throw of 49.32m in the discus on Friday.

Double European champion Thomas Young (Joe McDonnell; Charnwood) won the T38 100m and 200m sprints across the weekend, clocking 11.51 (-1.5) and 23.87 (+1.1) to continue his solid start to the outdoor 2019 season.

Ross Paterson (John Kinder; Red Star) – also running in the T38 sprints – recorded a personal best over 200m with a time of 24.70. This added to 12.38 in the 100m and 57.40 over 400m.

In the women’s T37 200m, Abbie McNally (Charles Forbes; Inverness) posted a career best over 100m, her time 14.98 (-0.9) for third behind Bethany Tucker (Mark Lodge; South Glos) who was second in 14.85. Both returned for the 200m but this time McNally who was the first British finisher, winning in 31.12 (0.7) with Tucker fifth in 32.00.

In the men’s T37 sprints, George Fox (Derek Newton; Blackpool, Wyre & Fylde) secured the double victory in times of 12.54 (-1.3) and 25.66 (+1.1) respectively.

European silver medallist Ali Smith (Guildford & Goldalming) was just outside her best to win the T38 400m, recording 65.97, adding to a second place over 200m in 13.73.

There were also wins for Welsh duo Kyron Duke (Anthony Hughes; DSW Para Academy) and Kirsty Taylor (DSW Para Academy; Christian Malcolm). Duke – who threw an unofficial world record in the F41 shot put in April, won the competition in 13.17m. Taylor won the T44 100m and 200m double in 14.44 (-0.5) and 31.48 (+0.8).

There was a lifetime best for Hannah Taunton (Charlotte Fisher; Taunton) in the T20 800m with a time of 2:22.11 placing her fourth in that contest. In the 1500m, she was third in 4:44.91.

In the T20 long jump, Steven Stone (Falkirk) was just three centimetres off his PB set in Grangemouth earlier this month. 6.56m was his best attempt in round three with five further efforts over 6.50m to complete a consistent series. He finished in fifth while compatriot Jordan Andrew (Matthew Grainger; Newham & Essex Beagles) was ninth with a best of 5.47m.

In the women’s equivalent, world and European finalist Martina Barber (Paddy O’Shea; Stevenage & North Herts) jumped 5.13m on her last attempt to move into fourth position, while Holly Durbidge (Mike Utting; City of Norwich) was eighth in 4.66m.

In the seated throws, Bethan Griffiths (Carolyn Franks; Cheltenham) won the women’s F32 club throw, her best coming on her final effort, 17.46m. In the men’s F51 discus, Ed Clifton (BWAA) was second after a throw of 26.78m, adding to his fourth-place finish and 8.55m best in the club throw.

Full results

Photo credit: Marco Mantovani/FISPES