In the Saturday morning session of the IAAF World Indoor Championships, at the Oregon Convention Centre in Portland the women’s 800 and 60m heats were the focus for the British team.
British team captain Asha Philip (Steve Fudge) and Dina Asher Smith (John Blackie) both made short work of getting through to tonight’s 60m semi-finals with solid second place finishes in each of their heats.
Philip who was running detached from the field in lane eight was matter-of-fact in her appraisal of the race:
“It was good. I’ve qualified and that was my aim. The time was good for me, I’m happy I’ve got that,” she said.
“I couldn’t see a thing out in lane eight, with no one in lane seven, but honestly I didn’t care, I don’t care what time I run as long as I’m in that semi-final.
“Each race I’m just hoping to progress. That was one of my fastest ever openers, so I’m happy.”
In the fourth heat, Dina Asher-Smith finished second in 7.12 to follow her team captain through.
In the 800m however there was disappointment for both Lynsey Sharp (Rana Reider) and Adelle Tracey (Craig Winrow) who were unable to make progress in their competition.
With a tough qualifying process where only the race winner in each heat was guaranteed to go through, they had their work cut out, but both took something from the experience.
Sharp, who ran an intelligent race, was unlucky not to progress having finished second, but her time of 2:02.75 was just outside of progressing – finishing seventh fastest from the morning’s qualifiers.
“Indoors is a lot harder when there are people in the race, indoors is a lot more tactical than outdoors, and that was the purpose for indoors – to learn that and to use it outdoors this year.
“We didn’t sit down and say the aim of this year was a medal at the world indoors, it was a stepping stone to Rio – but I do feel like I’ve learnt a lot in the races I’ve done.”
Tracey who was fourth in heat 3 with 2:07.05 found her first championship experience a rough ride:
“It was a really rough race; there was a lot of bumping forward and back. I’ve learnt a lot from that, it’s my first senior championships and I’m really happy to be here.
“I’ve learnt a lot from the race, I need to get out harder and I’ll take a lot away from this experience. You don’t realise how rough it is out there until you get to this level.”
Tonight’s interest begins at 17.11 local time with Lawrence Clarke in the men’s 60m hurdles heats.
Full results are available on https://www.iaaf.org/competitions/iaaf-world-indoor-championships/iaaf-world-indoor-championships-5681/timetable/byday