Jemma Reekie, at it again.
What more is there to say about Jemma Reekie? She has been at it again! In the MÃ¼ller Indoor Grand Prix in Glasgow last weekend, she won the 1500m, against a field which included Dawit Seyaum and Axumawit Embaye of Ethiopia as well as the Moroccan, Rababe Arafi in 4:04.07. In Lievin she was facing Halimah Nakaayi, the 2019 World Champion and six other sub 2 minute runners. Reekie won the race. The time was slow by her standards but this was a race and she won it. She controlled the race and won comfortably. She tucked in behind the two pacemakers and then held off Nakaayi to win by 1.6 seconds.
Reekie told me afterwards: “I would have liked to have run a bit faster knowing what shape I’m in but it was a tough field out there and I was going for the win” adding “I’m getting used to 800 meter running. My legs were struggling but I’m glad I made it to the line first”.
She dismissed the pressure that people like me like to put on her: “I just came out to do my best and focus on myself and run the race. I tend to forget about races I have done before when it’s time to move on to the next one”. She did admit to a certain disappointment not to get the opportunity to test her outstanding form in the World Indoors: “It is disappointing but there’s a good reason why it has been postponed. So I will just get my head down and focus on qualifying for Tokyo”.
Even coach, Andy Young was pleased: “I was really impressed. In control, almost too comfortable. That’s how to do it, if you can do it that way. So, impressed”.
I also wondered if he was as surprised as the rest of us at what Jemma had achieved: “To be the best in the world, time in time out, that is quite surprising. Times at 800, going sub two, didn’t surprise me. But to take on the best in the world and to show them how it’s done, that is something quite special”. He added: “We had been working on technique for a long time and that’s beginning to come together – still room for improvement though. It’s been a healthier winter and we,venot had to deal with real issues. Those are two of the key points [in her improvement]. And being patient because it’s a long-term project and were just beginning to see it starting to come through now”.
I didn’t ask Jemma or Andy anything about shoes.