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SAyers soars

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Goldie Sayers Aviva London Grand Prix 2012

14 July 2012

The Aviva London Grand Prix came to a fitting conclusion with Team GB track and field Olympians climbing on board a traditional London red bus to participate in a lap of honour before they compete at the London 2012 Olympic Games.

The undoubted star of the show on day two of the Diamond League event was Goldie Sayers (coach: Dan Pfaff). On a sodden afternoon, Sayers threw a new British record of 66.17m in the women’s javelin. The Belgrave Harriers’ first throw superseded her previous national best and personal best by 42cm, which she achieved in Beijing 2008. It was a near-faultless display of javelin throwing to win the competition.

“It was one of my best days on an athletics track and it’s my 30th birthday on Monday so it’s a nice present,” enthused Sayers.

“It’s been a long time coming and it’s very good timing but as all athletes say, there’s definitely a lot more left in there so I just need to find how to get it out at the (Olympic) Games when it matters.”

Reigning Olympic 400m champion Christine Ohuruogu (Lloyd Cowan) concluded the afternoon’s athletics action with a season’s best performance of 50.42 to win the Diamond League race. Roared down the home straight by the crowd, Ohuruogu powered past Amantle Montsho with just metres to go.

“I just wanted to sharpen up for London,” she said. “I’ve done all the work so I’m happy that I can take something like that away.

“I knew I had a good chance, I saw her (Montsho) look back so then I thought, ‘I’ve got you now’. It’s good that I put the race together and came out with a strong time.”

Yamile Aldama (Frank Attoh) continued her comeback from a recent shoulder injury with a jump of 14.37m to finish third in the first event of the afternoon. The 2012 world indoor triple jump champion was delighted with her performance after a frustrating time on the sidelines.

“I’m happy. The shoulder allowed me to do some jumping today so that’s why I’m happy,” she said.

“I need to get my rhythm back, I haven’t been able to do some run-ups in training but physically and mentally I’m ready for the Games.”

Recently crowned European high jump champion Robbie Grabarz (Fuzz Ahmed) achieved a best of 2.22m to share second with Tom Parsons (Aston Moore). With the Olympic Games a little of three weeks away, Grabarz admitted he a few things to work on to recapture his recent world leading form.

“I’m disappointed to be honest. I’ve put a couple of hard weeks in, but that performance doesn’t reflect how hard I’ve worked,” he said.

“I’ve just got to chat to my coach. I think it’s just a matter of concentration, coming into a meet like that. I shouldn’t have let that happen, I should have stayed in control to be honest. It was probably a lack of focus.
“Generally I just need to continue to train hard and make sure I focus at the right times.”

The men’s 400m national proved to be a good work out for the members of the Team GB 4x400m relay squad with a one two three finish. Jack Green (Malcolm Arnold) produced another personal best of the weekend (45.99) to win the race. Rob Tobin (Dan Pfaff) and Luke Lennon Ford (Linford Christie) were second and third.

Despite running a lifetime best, Green wasn’t exactly enamoured with his performance in the 400m flat.
“I was really happy with the hurdles yesterday but I wasn’t too happy with today,” he admitted. “It was really windy in that first 200m so you couldn’t really establish any speed.

“I won the race though and beat the two guys in the relay pool so hopefully that stands me in good stead for the relay in the Olympics.”

In the international 400m Nigel Levine (Linford Christie) was the best placed Brit with fourth – 45.27. Martyn Rooney and Conrad Williams were sixth and eighth.

Team GB 800m members Andrew Osagie (Craig Winrow) and Gareth Warburton (Darrell Maynard) finished third and eighth. Racing in front of a home British crowd was something Osagie, the world indoor bronze medallist, thoroughly enjoyed.

“It was amazing running in front of the home crowd here,” he said. “I felt like I need to be at some point in the race, I went for it and I just didn’t have that last bit at the end but that’s the training I’m missing going into the Games.”

There was disappointment when Phillips Idowu (Aston Moore) withdrew from the men’s triple jump with a hip problem. On medical advice the Beijing silver medallist did not take to the runway as a precautionary measure. There was an injury concern for Tiffany Porter (James Henry), who pulled up in the 100m hurdles with a minor back niggle. 

Local Croydon athlete James Ellington (John Powell) along with Christian Malcolm (Dan Pfaff) and European 200m bronze medallist Danny Talbot (Daniel Cossins) pitted their wits against Christophe Lemaitre. On his first competitive visit to the UK, the Frenchman wowed the sell-out crowd with a masterclass in 200m sprinting to win. There was a season’s best for Talbot of 20.59 to finish fourth, while Malcolm and Ellington suffered disappointment with seventh and eight spots.

For Talbot, 2012 is getting better and better.

“It went brilliantly, I’m still trying to learn how to run a 200m so I’m getting better at it and hopefully if I can get another race soon I’ll be able to PB.”

Ross Murray’s (Craig Winrow) 1500m Olympic preparations continue to gather pace when he ran an excellent second place in the world famous Emsley Carr Mile.

“It was good,” enthused the Gateshead athlete. “On the first lap I didn't feel great, in the middle lap I actually felt alright and then on the last lap I just absolutely went for it.
“It was absolutely amazing coming down that home straight, I've never heard anything like it in my life. Going in to the Olympics what more do I need? I'm absolutely over the moon. I excelled myself again which is unbelievable for me.”

There was also a run-out for  various members of Team GB men’s 4x100m squads as the competition. The quartet of Malcolm, Dwain Chambers, Ellington and Mark Lewis Francis recorded a time of 38.80 to claim fourth. The second quartet of Luke Fagan, Marlon Devonish, Talbot and Simeon Williamson was sixth with 38.94.

Carl Myerscough’s throw of 19.69m earned fifth spot in the men’s shot put, while Barbara Parker  (Sean Burris) ran a time of 9:29.22 in the 3000m steeplechase to claim third.

Results in full: http://www.diamondleague-london.com/Live-StartlistsResults/Overview/