Keeping Track: Kristal shines bright in Berlin and Melissa Courtney’s world leading win.

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KRISTAL SHINES BRIGHT

Living up to her name, Kristal Awuah was one of our Ones to Watch for 2019. Shining bright at Berlin’s ISTAF Indoor this weekend, the 19 year old certainly didn’t disappoint. With a huge lifetime best of 7.19 over the 60m, she beat European bronze medallist Gina Lückenkemper to the post in style.

In her article just last week, the teenager expresses that “I train to break records, not to fall short of them”and she did just that on Saturday night, shooting to 6th on the all-time list with her new clocking. The ISTAF Indoor at the Mercedes Benz Arena continued to deliver, with world leads from Sam Kendricks of USA in the pole-vault (5.86m) and the home crowd’s Malaika Mihambo in the long jump (6.99m)

WORLD LEAD OVER 3000M FOR COURTNEY 

There were more world leads on the other side of Germany too, as Karlsruhe hosted the IAAF World Indoor Tour, which saw Gold Coast Commonwealth games bronze medallist Melissa Courtney clock 8.43.36 over the 3000m, ahead of 19 year old world junior champion Alemaz Samuel of Ethiopia.

 

You could say the Welsh Team were quite happy about the news too…

IVAN UKHOV AMONG 12 RUSSIAN ATHLETES BANNED 

London 2012 Olympic high jump champion Ivan Ukhov is one of 12 Russian athletes to receive bans for doping, issued by the CAS (the Court of Arbitration of Sport). Ukhov’s ban of four years started on 1stFebruary and he will be stripped of his medals from London, meaning bronze medallist in 2012, Britain’s Robbie Grabarz could be upgraded to silver, alongside Canada’s Derek Drouin and Qatar’s Mutaz Essa Barshim.

RACE FINDER ATHLETES PERFORM ON THE CONTINENT 

Mondeville Elite Meeting in France was a popular event for Vinco Race Finder athletes this weekend. The 60m hurdles featured Jake Porter of Birchfield Harriers who clocked 7.98 and Jessica Hunter of Shaftesbury Barnet with 8.52. Kyle de Escofet also of Birchfield Harriers clocked 6.78 over the 60m flat. Mondeville is just one of many indoor events numerous British athletes have attended already this indoor season. Just two weeks prior, Nantes Elite French Meeting saw Race Finder athletes Khai Riley-La Borde and Jarryd Dunn run season’s bests over the 60 hurdles (7.88) and 400m (48.05).

CHAMPIONS OF TOMORROW 

Last weekend was full of action from the age group championships in Scotland and Wales, with regional championships in England also showcasing the best of its youth talent. Following in the footsteps of the Welsh Senior Championships, the Under 13 Girl’s 60m final saw a championship best performance of 8.23 by Nell Desir of Cardiff Archers. Meanwhile, Guernsey Athletics athlete Joe Chadwick took both the Under 20 Men’s 60m and 200m titles.

Over at the Emirates Stadium, ahead of the European Indoor Championships in just under a month’s time, a Scottish Athletics highlight was Edinburgh AC athlete Sam Brown’s U20 Men’s 800m victory in an fantastic dip finish just ahead of fast finishing Seamus Mackay of Shetland.

The North of England U15 & U13 Indoor Championships also saw many future champions rise to the occasion, with pocket rocket Trezeguet Taylor of Trafford AC (coach Andrew Wood) stealing the show in the U15 Girls 60m final in a new lifetime best of 7.63, taking her to 8th on the all-time rankings. All action from the NoE can be rewatched here.

FULL TEAM TO COMPETE AT IAAF WORLD CROSS COUNTRY CHAMPIONSHIPS

Despite some harsh criticism, British Athletics have vowed to select a full team for the championships on 30th March in Aarhus, Denmark, which is set to be a turning point for the event, having struggled for many a year to find a venue willing to host it. The course is said to feature an array of surfaces, from mud to sand and water, as well as an interesting grass-covered roof of a museum- the Danes clearly know how to blend cross country running and innovation!

COMING UP THIS WEEKEND

Hands up who’s ready for British Champs?

Birmingham is set to host the SPAR British Athletics Indoor Championships this weekend (Saturday 9th-Sunday 10thFebruary), with the likes of Nathaneel Mitchell-Blake, Laura Muir, Cindy Ofili, Niamh Emerson and Morgan lake, all set to compete. With many athletes already having competed numerous times in 2019, they look to be ready and set to go.

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First published on: 4 February, 2019 2:44 pm

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