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ballard and bain add further medals to the tally 

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16 June 2016


The British team narrowed in on their record medal tally at an IPC Athletics European Championships with Graeme Ballard (coach: Trevor Painter) adding a silver and Joshua Bain (Paul Welch) taking a bronze medal on the final morning of the competition.

‘The Bullet’ Ballard took home another silver from the championships after a close run race in the T36 200m final. Evgenii Torsunov and Ballard battled hard in the final 100m but the Russian just edged it with the Chorley athlete crossing the line in 26.14 (-2.9).

Ballard said after winning British Athletics’ 50th medal of the championships: “It was a really good race. I thought it was faster than that but I think the wind might have affected the time. I’m really excited heading towards Rio. I’d like to thank everyone on the team and all those supporting me at home, it is absolutely phenomenal.”

There was further medal joy in the F37 discus throw as Bain claimed bronze, his first European medal. In a very tight competition, he threw his furthest distance in the second round with 44.18m but faced a nervy wait, holding on to bronze, with fourth place over 50cm behind.  

A delighted Bain spoke afterwards: “I can’t stop smiling. It was a really close competition and I was so relieved when the last thrower didn’t go over my distance, the reality hit me that I had actually done it. It is such a great year to win a medal on the European stage – we have Rio coming up and London 2017 will be an exciting prospect next year.

“I’m so happy with my consistency in that competition. I was taking on some top athletes so I’m happy with the result. I wouldn’t have been able to do it without the support of my coach, all the British Athletics staff out here, my teammates and my parents out here supporting me.”

There was an encouraging international debut for Joshua Howard (Joe Frost) in the T38 long jump, finishing third but with no medal awarded. At just 17 years old, the Stockport athlete is still very new to the sport but dealt with his first major competition with maturity and is upbeat about taking a lot away from the experience. With a best of 5.41m in round two, Howard made a solid start on the European stage.

Howard commented: “I feel like I gave it everything I could and it was fun; that is the most important thing. There is no point going out there if you don’t enjoy it. This is my first senior competition and every minute has been brilliant. I’ve met people I have looked up to for years and I’ve become good friends with them. When I was younger, I never thought I would be doing this and I feel privileged to in the same team as the likes of Richard Whitehead and Jonnie Peacock.

“There are loads of major championships to look forward to – Rio if things go well, London 2017 next year and Tokyo 2020. I’m quite happy that I started at such a young age because I can learn so much over the next few years.”

There was a fourth place finish for Sabrina Fortune (Ian Robinson) in the F20 shot put with a best effort of 12.14m in in round four. The 19 year-old finished fifth in the world final last year and in a high quality European line-up she showed her pedigree in the event.

Fortune commented: “I’m happy with fourth and I had some good throws. I have learned a lot from this experience. I know I need to make sure I get my shoulder up more because it is dropping slightly. There was a lot more people in this final here (than in Doha) so there was a lot of waiting in between throws but that was a useful lesson.”

The final session of the IPC Athletics European Championships starts at 15:00 UK time on the Channel 4 website: http://paralympics.channel4.com/competitions/grosseto-european-athletics-2016/news/newsid=1242147/index.html#live-ipc-athletics-european-championships

 

British Athletics medal tally at the IPC Athletics European Championships: (51)

Gold:

Mickey Bushell – T53 100m

Jo Butterfield - F31/32/51 Club Throw

Richard Chiassaro – T54 200m

Aled Davies – F42 Shot Put and Discus

Dan Greaves – F44-46 Discus

Toby Gold – T33 100m

Sophie Hahn – T38 100m

Georgie Hermitage – T37 100m, 200m and T37/38 400m

Mo Jomni – T53 200m

Maria Lyle – T35 100m and 200m

Jonnie Peacock – T44 100m

David Weir – T54 400m, 800m and 5000m

Richard Whitehead – T42 100m and 200m


Silver:

Graeme Ballard – T36 100m and 200m

Dan Bramall – T33 100m

Richard Chiassaro – T54 100m, 400m and 800m

David Devine – T13 1500m

Sophie Hahn – T38 200m

David Henson – T42 200m

Mo Jomni – T53 400m and 800m

Gemma Prescott – F31/32/51 Club Throw

Sam Ruddock – F35 Shot Put

Carly Tait – T34 100m and 400m

Isaac Towers – T34 400m


Bronze:

Joshua Bain – F37 Discus

Jonathan Broom-Edwards – T42/44 High Jump

Mickey Bushell – T53 400m

Kadeena Cox – T38 200m

Jordan Howe – T35 100m and 200m

Abbie Hunnisett – F31/32/51 Club Throw

Mo Jomni – T53 100m

Stephen Miller – F32 Club Throw

Holly Neill – F40/41 Discus

Steve Osborne – T51 100m

Ben Rowlings – T34 100m and 400m

Laura Sugar – T44 200m

Isaac Towers – T34 200m