Here is the first article on the SPAR British Athletics from Stuart Weir. Stuart covered both days for us and I joined him on Day 2. His sense of humor and his observation skills kept me smiling during our watching of Day 2 from row DD at the Arena Bimingham.
British prospects in Glasgow
That the European Indoor Athletics Championships take place in Glasgow in three weeks, gave the Spar British Athletics Indoor Championships in Birmingham an added importance. The other side of the coin is that with the World Championships being in October, some athletes are opting out of the indoors to start their season later. In Belgrade 2017, Team GB was second in the medal table with 10 behind Poland with 12. Of the nine individual medalists from 2017, Robbie Grabarz (high jump) has retired, Eilish McColgan – a Scot who would have relished running in Glasgow – is injured, Andrew Pozzi and Lorraine Ugen were absent from the trials.
To the best of my knowledge, the Spar British Athletics Indoor Championships in Birmingham is the only event on the circuit with a full-sized lego giraffe outside. This may be something to do with the location of the lego shop but I would like to see IAAF making it a requirement for all meet venues. But I digress.
Of the other 2017 medalists, Asha Philip took European gold in the 60m, retained her British title in 7.19 but was pushed all the way by Rachel Miller who ran a PR on 7.20. Philip said afterwards: “I’m really happy because I had to work for that. None of my races are ever easy but I really had to dig in for that. It was a fight to the line and I’m really happy I came away with the gold. It’s a tenth British title and it means so much to me. It was freezing downstairs when you’re waiting but when you come out to race the atmosphere was electric and it made it such a special race for me”.
Laura Muir, who will defend both her 1500m and 3000m titles in Glasgow, competed only in the 3000 imn Birmingham winning comfortably in 8:48.03. Laura’s training partner, Jemma Reekie, won the 1500m to book her place for Glasgow as well. And with Chris O’Hare winning the men’s 3000m, there could be a Scottish double in Glasgow
Silver medallist in the 800m two years ago, Shelayna Oskan-Clarke won the British title to confirm her place in the team for Glasgow. It was a slow race (2:05.04) but Oaskan-Clarke, always looked comfortable. Morgan Lake won the high jump with 1.94, attempting unsuccessfully a British record 1.99 after she had secured victory. Holly Bradshaw, winning the pole-vault with 4.80 also confirmed her place in the team.
The women’s 400m was very competitive with Zoe Clark winning. With places one to five separated by 0.46 of a second, there is a strong relay team waiting to get out! So all in all Team GB is looking good for the European Indoors.
The @runblogrun tour of the IAAF World Indoor Tour, plus the 2019 SPAR British Champs, aka Le Tour de Larry, is sponsored by USATF and Nike, reminding you that the 2019 USATF Indoor Championships are February 22, 23, and 24 at the Ocean Breeze AC, on Staten Island. To purchase tickets, please use this link:
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