The crowds came to Sheffield for day two of the British Indoors which were also serving as trials to make the plane for Team GB at the World Indoors at Portland,USA which began on the final day of Cheltenham.
An abundance of talent were out to stake their claim for a plush seat and a comfy hotel room by achieving the standard required to ensure that it would be possible and in the Steel City the supporters were treated to some spectacular running,jumping and throwing at the excellent English Institue of Sport.
With events from 60m to 3000m as well some top quality field events it was an afternoon of intrigue.
Louise Bloor took the Women’s 200m title and did it in style being the only runner to go under 24 seconds recording a winning time of 23.39s
The Men’s 200m title required three races for victory,Toby Harries from Brighton Phoenix won his heat,semi and final,winning in a final time of 21.13s
Women’s 60m Hurdles looked very competitive with tight times for the winners from the four heats, as expected Tiffany Porter took the final from Serita Solomon and Lucy Hatton in 7.98s
Over the 400m trip of two laps Nigel Levine just hung on in a frantic finish from Cameron Chalmers and Alex Boyce with times of 48.00,48.05 and 48.07 while in the Women’s race Meghan Beesley of Birchfield Harriers fought off the attentions of Montene Speight to claim her title in 53.16s
Some good races over the middle distances with a nice Women’s 1500m that went to Hannah England as she went from third with two laps to go to lead in the last 100m from her training partner Alison Leonard,early pace setter Madeleine Murray was third.
Charlie Grice proved to be the banker of the day in the Men’s 1500m as he won probably a little bit cheekily in 3.46.50 as he held James Brewer by 0.2s but never looked like defeat was possible,Michael Rimmer who ran in this after being DQ in Saturday’s 800m was in contention until pulling up with under 600m left.
Women’s 800m had plenty of quality in it and it produced an enthralling finish as Adele Tracey took the prize with Leah Barrow behind her in second place,a repeat of their heat from yesterday, Lynsey Sharp took the lead inside the final lap from Jenny Meadows who began to drop back but Tracey and Barrow came over the top and took the spoils.
In the Men’s 800m Jamie Webb of Liverpool Harriers got the better of Spencer Thomas in 1.51.25 and 1.51.35,Guy Learmonth came third in 1.52.45, the race did have a bit of a moment in it when Sheffield’s Mukhtar Mohammed got checked into the final lap and dropped out of contention but their was no stewards into it.
Steph Twell beat a useful enough field in the Women’s 3000m race,taking the lead from long time leader Jo Moultrie inside the last 800m she strolled home in 8.54.99 and Moultrie recording 8.56.75, Charlotte Green and Bobby Clay recorded PBs for the session along with Ireland’s Rose-Anne Galligan,in fact nine of the fourteen starters recorded either Personal or Seasonal bests.
At the top of the card on the track we had the 3000m Walk races, Bethan Davies from Cardiff broke her British record with a real demolition job as she lapped the entire field,a few more than once in 12.44.96 over a minute ahead from Emma Achurch.
Tom Bosworth continued his dominance in the Men’s 300m Walk as he gave a brutal display to his rivals winnings in 10.59.21 and thus beating his own National Record which he set at the EIS last month, Chris Snook eventually came second in 13.12.24.
In a wide open Shot Putt it was an all the way win for the City Of York’s Scott Lincoln whose first round throw of 17.54m was never going to be passed by the other throwers apart from himslef as he got 18.90 on his last attempt,Scott Rider came second with 17.61m
Chris Baker from Sale Harriers 2.29m in the High Jump was enough to secure the prize,he had a jump off with Robbie Grabarz of Newham and Essex but neither could get over 2.31m.
The Women’s Triple Jump seemed to have more red flags than at a Vladimir Putin Appreciation Society but like the shot putt it went down to the last athlete as Sineade Gutzmore flew through the air on her last jump to land in the sand on 13.35m nicely ahead of Angela Barrett on 13.03m
Finally in the Women’s Long Jump in which only four went to post,Stoke’s Jazmin Sawyer saw her fifth round jump of 6.67m enough to hold off Lorraine Ugen’s 6.60m
Lots of Portland clues then and a few tricky choices to be made by the selectors before Tuesday’s announcement.
In a couple of weeks we go AW racing to Wolverhampton for the Lincoln Trial and the next athletics will be the British Olympic Trials in June.