Stuart Weir provides the reader with an intimate view of the surroundings that we do not get from watching the streaming video. Stuart wants to give you a view of what is going on behind the scenes as well as in the races. Here is his second story from today’s Muller Indoor Grand Prix, held in Glasgow, Scotland.
There were several exciting races in the women’s programme at the Má½•ller Indoor Grand Prix in Glasgow. The 60m had an Olympic champion, a World Champion and a double World championship silver medallist in the field.
Marie JosÃ©e of Ivory Coast won in 7.09 from Dinah Asher-Smith (GB) with Elaine Thompson (Jamaica) third and Dafne Schippers (Netherlands) only fourth. Ta Lou said afterwards: “I’m OK with 7.07s as my season’s best and it’s a good marker for the World Championships, where I hope to do better. My coach said if I ran 7.10s it’s OK but 7.07s is even better for me on a personal level”.
I heard Asher-Smith say that she was not running in the World Indoors because it would be too difficult to prepare to run 60m when her focus is on the 200 at the Commonwealth Games in April. Really? If she can run 7.09 and beat Thompson and Schippers when not prepared, I wonder what she could manage when she is!
2017 World Champion Phyllis Francis (USA) won the 400m in 52 seconds dead. She had just too much power for Scotland’s Eilidh Doyle who did hold off Jamaica’s Stefenie Ann McPherson.
Liga Velvere (Latvia) ran 2:02.01 to win the 800m from Scotland’s Lynsey Sharp (2:02.39). The women’s 1500m was predictably between 2 Kenyans and an Ethiopian with Beatrice Chepkoech finishing first in 4:02.21. The winner of the IAAF Indoor Tour as well as tonight’s race said afterwards: “I am so grateful to get the win. This is my first ever indoor season so I am very pleased with it; to win the tour is a surprise to me but it was very important. I am so happy to have raced like this so far this year. A national record as well! I am very pleased to have run that time”. Prior to this winter, as the stadium announcer insisted in telling everyone, Chepkeoch was best known for missing the water jump at London 2017 and having to go back.
The 60m hurdles has arguably been the contest of the Indoor Tour with Sharika Nelvis winning two and Christina Manning winning two – in one race the pair had an identical time. In Glasgow Manning won in a Stadium Record 7.79 to clinch the World Indoor Tour title. Nelvis was second in 7.84. It was so close that the stadium announcer informed the crowd that Manning had won the race but Nelvis the tour title before having to correct it to Manning winning both. Manning said: “I came out here for the win, I needed the win to claim the Tour title and I got it. It’s always good to run close to your personal record. I wasn’t expecting a fast time like that, but I’m glad I got it”.
Nelvis said: “The race was OK, I was able to get under eight seconds which made it a good race. We always feel we’re coming to any competition to win, I felt like it but 7.84s is good, I’m disappointed I didn’t win but I have the World Championships to come”.
Sophie Hahn won the combined T37-38 (Cerebral palsy) 60m race in a national record 7.95 and Irmgard Bensusan (Germany) the T43-44 (amputee) race in 8.24.