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UK sprinters star in Karlsruhe and Bratislava
29 Jan 2006 23:27
 

While Jason Gardener (Wessex and Bath) reinforced his position as the world’s fastest 60m sprinter, Mark Findlay (Newham and Essex Beagles) swept under the UKA entry standard for this winter’s IAAF World Indoor Championships – and last summer’s top Juniors Craig Pickering (Milton Keynes) and Simeon Williamson (Highgate Harriers) were partially up-staged by Under 23 Rikki Fifton (Victoria Park Harriers and Tower Hamlets) as they continued their topsy-turvy battles on Sunday 29 January.

Twenty four hours after his victory at the Norwich Union International in Glasgow, Gardener maintained his 100 per cent record for the season with two sparkling runs at the IAAF Permit meeting in Karlsruhe, Germany. After winning his heat in 6.55 seconds – the fastest time in the world this season – he triumphed in the final in 6.58 seconds, two-hundredths ahead of Marcus Brunson (USA). And Findlay powered over the line in third place in 6.62, well under the entry standard of 6.70, having run 6.69 in his heat.

Meanwhile, the England international match in Bratislava, Slovakia, was reminiscent of last summer’s battles between the country’s swiftest teenagers. Pickering, who led the Norwich Union GB 1-2-3 at last summer’s European Junior Championships, had been defeated by Williamson a couple of times before the big event. And Williamson, who already has a 6.66 clocking to his credit this month, came out on top again in Bratislava. He won the final in 6.72 with Fifton placed second but given the same time, Tim Abeyie (Belgrave) third in 6.72 and Pickering fourth in 6.80. To further whet the appetite for the upcoming Norwich Union World Trials and AAA Championships at the EIS, Sheffield, on 11-12 February, Fifton had won an earlier heat in 6.76 while Williamson had clocked 6.77 to beat Pickering by three-hundredths in their first match-up of the day.

Jeanette Kwakye (Woodford Green with Essex Ladies) – inspired by the prospect of the 2012 Olympics coming to a site near her East London home – swept under the Women’s 60m entry standard for the World Indoors by winning in Karlsruhe in 7.23, three-hundredths ahead of Stephanie Durst. Joice Maduaka (also Woodford) suffered the frustration of being DQ’d for a second false start in her heat.

Sarah Claxton (Belgrave), determined to attack the Moscow entry standard of 8.15 after her DQ in Glasgow, was second in both her Bratislava races to Ireland’s Derval O’Rourke. Claxton clocked 8.18 and 8.19.

Friday night’s heroine, Karen Harewood (Corby) followed her 2:00.53 in Budapest with another excellent victory, in 2:01.44. Behind her, Charlotte Best (Crawley) took second place in a PB of 2:05.77 with Rachael Thompson (Liverpool Harriers) third in 2:09.21.

Andrew Steele (Trafford) scored his second win of this mini-tour of IAAF Development Meetings, winning the 400m in 47.82.

Richard Hill (Notts) continued his dogged pursuit of the UKA 800m entry standard of 1:48.50 for Moscow by lowering his PB to 1:49.19 in registering another victory.

William Sharman (Belgrave) PB’d in winning the 60m hurdles in 7.83 seconds – and matched the time in his second race later in the Bratislava meeting.

One of his Norwich Union GB Under 23 Team-mates from last summer, Anyika Onuora (Liverpool Harriers) had a great meet, winning her first 60m in a PB of 7.43, then accelerating to 7.31 to win her second race and go to 15th in the UK all-time Senior Women’s rankings.

And England provided the winners of both of the Women’s 400m races – Liz Fairs (Trafford) in 54.97 after she won a 200m in 24.97 and Lesley Owusu (Windsor, Slough, Eton and Hounslow) in 55.36.

Selected results from Bratislava…

Men – 60m: 1 S Williamson (Eng) 6.72; 2 R Fifton (Eng) 6.72; 3 T Abeyie (Eng) 6.72; 4 C Pickering (Eng) 6.80. 200m Race 1: 1 C van Branteghem (Bel) 21.87; 2 J Ellington (Eng) 22.17; 3 A Steele (Eng) 22.30. 400m: 1 A Steele (Eng) 47.82; 2 D McCarthy (Irl) 47.82; 3 R Buck (Eng) 48.19. 800m: 1 R Hill (Eng) 1:49.19; 2 G Balch (Eng) 1:50.28. 60m hurdles: 1 S Sajdok (Cze) 7.76; 2 W Sharman (Eng) 7.83; 7 D Malins (Eng) 8.07; 8 R Alleyne (Eng) 8.08. Triple Jump: 1 D Valukevic (Svk) 17.19; 4 J Golley (Eng) 15.85; 5 G White (Eng) 15.41.
Women – 60m: 1 A Onuoro (Eng) 7.31; 5 D Allahgreen (Eng) 7.53; 7 L Miller (Eng) 7.59; 8 K-A Thomas (Eng) 7.69. 200m Race 1: 1 C Sheehy (Irl) 24.17; 2 L Miller (Eng) 25.41. Race 2: 1 L Fairs (Eng) 24.97. 400m Race 1: 1 L Owusu (Eng) 55.36. Race 2: 1 L Fairs (Eng) 54.97. 800m: 1 K Harewood (Eng) 2:01.44; 2 C Best (Eng) 2:05.77; 3 R Thompson (Eng) 2:09.21. Long Jump: 1 J Veldakova (Svk) 6.34; 2 J Hollman (Eng) 6.32; 6 S Welstead (Eng) 5.82. 60m hurdles: 1 D O’Rourke (Irl) 8.02; 2 S Claxton (Eng) 8.19; 7 J Hollman (Eng) 8.70. Triple jump: 1 D Veldakova (Svk) 14.09; 3 N Williams (Eng) 13.15; 5 B White (Eng) 12.95.

On the home front, Michael Wheeler (Herne Hill Harriers) did at the Carshalton Open meeting what he had threatened to do at the South of England AA Indoor Championships last weekend and set new UK Under 15 and age 14 bests by putting the shot 17.33m. In fact, he beat the Under 15 indoor record twice in a series that went: no throw, 17.11m, 16.44m, 17.33m, 16.80m, no throw.

Junior Jamie Williamson (Sheffield) won the North of England Indoor Senior shot title with a PB of 16.99m at the EIS, Sheffield, on a day when territorial Gold medals went to several athletes who are expected to be in action in the second semi-final of the UK Athletics Indoor City Challenge at the National Indoor Athletics Centre, UWIC, Cardiff, on Saturday 4 February.

17-year-old Gerald Phiri (Sheffield) won the 60m in 6.84, with Allyn Condon (Sale) placed second in the same time. Rabah Yusuf, who is in the Newcastle team for Cardiff, won the 400m in 48.37, a third of a second ahead of Sam Ellis (Barnsley). Chris Kirk long jumped a PB of 7.45m to continue his emergence from injury problems. And there were Championship Bests for Jenny Meadows (Wigan) in the 800m plus 60m hurdlers David Hughes (Sheffield / Trafford), the European Under 23 110m hurdles Champion, and Jessica Ennis (Sheffield), the European Junior heptathlon Champion who is heading for the Commonwealth Games in Melbourne. Martin Aram (Liverpool Harriers) also entered the record books in winning the high jump title: his PB of 2.18m is an Isle of Man best.

If you know of a performance that should be added to these UK highlights, please email the details to tfrecknall[email protected]


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