29th May 2019
PLENTY ON OFFER FOR BRITS IN STOCKHOLM
Dina Asher-Smith (club: Blackheath & Bromley; coach: John Blackie) returns to the Diamond League in Stockholm aiming to make it two wins from two on the circuit this season and two wins in as many years in the Swedish capital.
The triple European champion from 2018 clocked a world lead 22.26 for an impressive victory over 200m at the Diamond League opener in Doha earlier this month and she will compete over the same distance in Stockholm.
Asher-Smith will have fond memories of the Stockholm track too having last year won the 100m in 10.93 – just 0.01 shy of the British record she had set days before in Oslo, which was lowered to 10.85 on the way to European gold in Berlin.
She is one of 16 Brits set to compete in Stockholm, by far the largest contingent on the Diamond League circuit this season, with fellow European champion Laura Muir (Dundee Hawkhill; Andy Young) and Westminster Mile winner Melissa Courtney (Poole; Rob Denmark) both in action.
Unlike last year, Asher-Smith will face both two-time world champion Dafne Schippers and double Olympic champion Elaine Thompson in the 200m – both in the top five all time quickest in the distance – but will be looking to improve her world lead after dominating Doha and hasn’t finished outside the top two on her last three Diamond League outings.
Muir meanwhile ran for the first time since achieving an historic European indoor double-double in Glasgow in March, finishing third at the Westminster Mile at the weekend and is the reigning Diamond League champion over the 1500m.
Comfortably the fastest in the field, Muir will have plenty of British company in the race with training partner Jemma Reekie (Kilbarchan; Young) and Sarah McDonald (Birchfield Harriers; David Harmer) both in the field and set to continue their own domestic rivalry.
Winner of the Westminster Mile at the weekend, Courtney could go close to the Welsh 5000m record of 15:04.75 that she set on the way to a fifth-place finish at the European Championships last summer.
Courtney has enjoyed a great year to date, lowering her 3000m personal best to 8:38.22 in winning European indoor bronze in March and will be joined in the race by fellow Brit Eilish McColgan (Dundee Hawkhill; Liz Nuttall), both going for standards for the IAAF World Championships later this year.
Also victorious over the weekend in Manchester, Lynsey Sharp (Edinburgh; Harmer) is back on the Diamond League circuit in the 800m having placed ninth in Doha while Sebastian Rodger (Shaftesbury Barnet; Benke Blomkvist) will also look to continue his good form in the 400m hurdles.
Rodger clocked his best time for two years, 49.60, in Belgium at the weekend, which is just 0.30 shy of the qualifying standard for the IAAF World Championships while Anyika Onuora (Liverpool; Blomkvist) will open her outdoor campaign in the 400m having competed at the IAAF World Relays earlier this month.
Rabah Yousif (Newham & Essex Beagles; Carol Williams), Cameron Chalmers (Guernsey; James Hillier) and Bianca Williams (Enfield & Haringey; Lloyd Cowan) were all also in Yokohama for the IAAF World Relays and will compete in Stockholm.