[Skip to content]

Search our Site
  • Instagram Icon
  • RSS Icon
  • Twitter Icon
  • Facebook Icon
  • YouTube Icon
UK Athletics


Share this

Share to Twitter Share to Facebook Tell friends via WhatsApp Email us
Holly Bleasdale

11 February 2014  

The Sainsbury’s Indoor Grand Prix will attract one of its best ever fields, as 23 Olympic and Paralympic and 59 world medallists descend on Birmingham’s National Indoor Arena on Saturday 15 February.

World Indoor 1500m gold medallist Genzebe Dibaba, who took an astonishing six seconds off the world record in the 3000m last week in Stockholm, will be aiming for her third world record in 14 days in the 2 miles. The Ethiopian will be looking to better the 9:06.26 set by two-time Olympic 5000m champion Meseret Defar in 2009 and in doing so setting the first world record at the NIA in six years. British interest will come from 2011 European 3000m gold medallist Helen Clitheroe (coach: Terrence Mahon), who will return to the Sainsbury’s Indoor Grand Prix after victory last year, Eilish McColgan (Liz Nuttall) and newly crowned 3000m British champion Charlene Thomas (Aaron Thomas). 

Two-time Olympic 100m champion and five-time world gold medallist Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce will go head-to-head with Murielle Ahoure over 60m, who got the better of her Jamaican rival last year clocking the seventh fastest time indoors – 6.99. Ahoure is in scintillating form in 2014 running 7.03, the fastest time in the world this year in Houston and could put Irina Privalova’s 21 year old world record of 6.92 under threat.

In the men’s equivalent, British champion and the second fastest man in the world this year, James Dasaolu (Steve Fudge) will face a world-class field in the 60m. The European Indoor 60m silver medallist will face 2003 world champion Kim Collins, 2010 World Indoor 60m silver medallist Mike Rodgers, four-time global medallist Nesta Carter, 2011 200m world bronze medallist Christophe Lemaitre and Jimmy Vicaut, the man who beat him to gold in Gothenburg last year. Dasaolu could well put the stadium record of 6.46 under severe pressure as he also comes up against World Indoor 60m bronze medallist Dwain Chambers (Rana Reider) and Richard Kilty (Reider), who finished in second and third in Sheffield last weekend.

GB & NI’s Olympic gold medallist Greg Rutherford (Jonas Tawiah-Dodoo) will make his first appearance of the 2014 season and will go up against a formidable line-up in the long jump that includes the three medallists from the IAAF World Championships in Moscow – Russia’s Aleksandr Menkov, Holland’s Ignisious Gaisah and Mexico’s Luis Rivera.

Rutherford said: “I’m really looking forward to coming to the Sainsbury’s Indoor Grand Prix in Birmingham, which will be my only indoor competition this year. This meeting has a great tradition and I'm glad I'm able to compete this weekend since I've had to pull out of the Sainsbury's Glasgow International Match earlier this year due to a minor injury."

"The field looks incredible; all three medallist from Moscow will line up and while this is my first competition since Moscow last summer, it'll be a great test to see where I'm at before preparing for the summer season.

"(Aleksandr) Menkov is already in great shape, but I'm hoping the crowd will get behind me and my British team mates."

British pole vault record holder Holly Bleasdale (Scott Simpson) wrapped up her fourth successive British title on Saturday clearing a then world-leading height of 4.73m and will be looking to continue her strong start to 2014 by taking the scalp of Olympic silver medallist Yarisley Silva. The Cardiff-based athlete will be keen to impress ahead of the World Indoor Championships, where she will look to go better than her bronze medal finish in 2011.

In one of the most anticipated events at the Sainsbury’s Indoor Grand Prix, current world 110m hurdles champion David Oliver will go up against Olympic champion and world record holder Aries Merritt. Fresh from their dead heat at the Sainsbury’s British Indoor Championships last weekend, newly crowned British champions William Sharman (Jerzy Maciukiewicz) and Andy Pozzi (Malcolm Arnold) will look to mix it with the best, while there is a welcome return from injury for Andy Turner (Lloyd Cowan), who came through his first competition of the season clocking a time of 7.73.

Oliver said: “2013 was a very special year for me. I think many people doubted whether I could return to the top of the event, however, I’ve always maintained that inner confidence in my ability, so to win my first global gold medal in Moscow and be back on top of the world was really satisfying.  On the flip side, 2013 is the past and will have very little bearing on the upcoming season, everyone will be on their A game and I have to make sure I am on mine as well.  2014 will be a long season and I am very happy to get it started at the Sainsbury’s Indoor Grand Prix.”  

With the forthcoming selection for the World Indoor Championships next week a number of British athletes will be looking to put themselves in contention for a spot on plane for Poland. Among those names, World Indoor bronze medallists Andrew Osagie (Craig Winrow), Tiffany Porter (Reider) and Shara Proctor (Reider) will be looking to impress selectors as well as 2010 World Indoor silver medallist Jenny Meadows (Trevor Painter), world 4x400m bronze medallist Eilidh Child (Malcolm Arnold) and Luke Lennon-Ford (Linford Christie).   

The event will conclude a sold-out indoor season, as a crowd of 6,500 pack out the NIA featuring some of the leading lights from the world of para-athletics. After victory at the Sainsbury’s Glasgow International Match, USA’s T44 100m world record holder Richard Browne will headline the men’s 60m field, where he will face Paralympic medallists Ronald Hertog and David Prince. Britain’s rising star Sophie Hahn (Joseph McDonnell) lines up in the T37/38 60m, as the world T38 100m champion goes up against London 2012 T35-38  4x100m bronze medallists Jenny McLoughlin (Keith Antoine) and Katrina Hart (Rob Ellchuk).

For full entry lists, please visit: http://www.britishathletics.org.uk/british-athletics-series/sainsburys-indoor-grand-prix/event-schedule/

Watch the Sainsbury’s Indoor Grand Prix on Saturday on BBC One from 1.15.