29th May 2022


Matthew Hudson-Smith (coach: Gary Evans, club: Birchfield Harriers) rewrote the history books as he improved the 400m British record at the Eugene Diamond League, the third stop of the series.

Alongside the UK record, Keely Hodgkinson (Trevor Painter, Leigh) followed on her victory in Birmingham with another 800m win, while there were personal bests for Jake Heyward (Mark Rowland, Cardiff) and Neil Gourley (Ben Thomas, Giffnock North) on a busy day of action at Hayward Field.

It was in the men’s 400m where European champion Matt Hudson-Smith broke Iwan Thomas’ 25-year-old record by 0.01 seconds, in 44.35. It was one of the races of the meeting as Michael Norman (USA) ran a world lead, Diamond League record, and meeting record with a time of 43.60 ahead of Kirani James (GRN) in 44.02. The Briton was third overall and his personal best leaves him top of the UK all-time list.

After winning at the Alexander Stadium last weekend, Keely Hodgkinson continued the winning habit as she defeated an incredibly strong line-up to win the women’s 800m. With only the Olympic champion Athing Mu (USA) missing, this line-up was fit for any global final, and the Leigh athlete showed her quality to come through and win in a time of 1:57.72, which was a world lead time. America’s Ajee Wilson was next in 1:58.06, while Britain’s Olympic finalist Jemma Reekie (Andy Young, Kilbarchan) was eighth in 2:00.53.

In a stacked line-up, Dina Asher Smith (John Blackie, Blackheath & Bromley) was fourth in the women’s 100m in a race won by Olympic champion, Elaine Thompson-Herah in 10.79 (0.7). The Briton ran 10.98 with Sha’Carri Richardson (USA) and Shericka Jackson (JAM) occupying second and third place.

In the famous Bowerman mile, Olympic finalist Jake Heyward recorded a personal best of 3:51.99 on his way to seventh place in the contest. The race was won by Norway’s Jakob Ingebrigtsen in 3:49.76.

The women’s 1500m certainly delivered a fast race as the Olympic champion, Faith Kipyegon (KEN) stormed to victory in 3:52.59, a world lead, ahead of Ethiopia’s Gudaf Tsegay, while Laura Muir (Andy Young, Dundee Hawkhill) crossed the line in 11th in 4:04.45.

Meanwhile, in the women’s 100m hurdles, a non-Diamond League race, Cindy Sember (Jeff Porter, Woodford Green Essex Ladies) was fourth in 12.69 (-0.7) in a race won by world lead Jasmine Camacho-Quinn (PUR) in a time of 12.45.

In the non-Diamond League 1500m, Neil Gourley (Ben Thomas, Giffnock North) ran inside the world championship qualifying standard with a lifetime best of 3:34.85 as he finished a close second to Australia’s Samuel Tanner [3:34.37]. It was the Scottish athlete’s first clocking sub 3:35 after revising his best to 3:35.32 earlier this year. In the same race, there were season bests for Marc Scott (Jerry Schumacher, Richmond & Zetland) and James West (Ben Thomas, Tonbridge) who finished ninth and tenth in times of 3:37.68 and 3:38.44 respectively.

In the women’s long jump, Lorraine Ugen (Dwight Philips, Thames Valley) – the world indoor bronze medallist – unfortunately did not get a legal jump registered during her series.

Several field events were rescheduled to Friday evening due to poor weather being expected on Saturday evening, so the women’s high jump and discus, both with British interest, were moved.

Emily Borthwick (Wigan & District) cleared a best of 1.80m for seventh in the high jump, while Jade Lally (Zane Duquemin, Shaftesbury Barnet) also finished seventh, in the discus – the best throw of her series was 59.76m in her fifth round.

But the standout result from Friday came from Sam Atkin (Mike Collins, Lincoln Wellington) in the men’s 5000m (non-Diamond League) where he ran a personal best and European qualifying standard – just outside the worlds mark – of 13:15.31 for fifth overall. The race was won by Joshua Cheptegei (UGA) in a world lead of 12:57.99.