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aviva gb&ni team second on day 1

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Dwain Chambers
European leading time for Chambers

19 June 2010 

Restoring faith in British sport the Aviva Great Britain and Northern Ireland team began their SPAR European Team Championships campaign with vigor recording no less than five wins, two championship records and 188 points to end day one second in the team standings.

In a highly anticipated 100m Dwain Chambers (Daniel Plummer) recorded a European leading time and track record of 9:99 (+1.1m/s) on his way to the win and 12 points for GB&NI. His closest rival Christophe Lemaitre (FRA) clocked a personal best of 10:02 but was no match for Britain’s fastest man.

Chambers, who will compete at the Aviva European Trials and UK Championships next week on his journey to Barcelona, said: “Finally! Has it really been 13 years since my last sub ten? That was really great, I am here as part of the team and I got maximum points which was the aim.  It is so great to be doing this in GB colours, so rewarding.” 

In the 400m Martyn Rooney (Nick Dakin) continued his return to form and the forefront of British athletics with a well deserved win and top points. Making his way up the pecking order throughout the first 300m, his main competition came from French athlete Leslie Djhone in the last 60m who eventually pushed him to 45:67. He said: “I was just doing enough to win, I made sure I won the race but there's still a lot more there. Conditions, with that massive head wind, weren't great but a win is a win and 12 points.”

Team Captain Mo Farah (Ricky Simms) ran a world class 5000m, executing a tactically astute plan which saw him move through the pack of twelve men during the race and into the lead for the final lap. In true Farah fashion he had enough left to kick over the final 100m and recorded a time of 13:46.93.  

“I am so happy to get a win, Dai Greene started the day off with victory and we've had several others since then so I had to get maximum points. The whole team has stepped up here and that's good to see. That was a similar field to what I would face in Barcelona so it is good preparation,” he said.

Dai Greene (Malcolm Arnold) recorded the teams’ first win at the SPAR European Team Championships and twelve points early on in the competition. The Welshman ran strongly throughout and had a clear hold over the field into the final 60m. His time of 49:53 was not a patch on his personal and season’s best of 48:27 recorded at the European Athletics Festival earlier this month and bodes well for the rest of the season.  

“I knew I was the best in the field and that I could win. I wasn't expecting a fast time just twelve points. All of my rivals for Barcelona were in that race so it’s good and gives me confidence going into the Europeans.”

Colin McCourt (Craig Winrow) ran an inspired 1500m to sneak a win on the line ahead of an experienced field. The debutante’s time of 3:46.70 gained him a huge cheer from the ever present British supporters in Bergen and maximum points for his new teammates.  

He said: “That was great. None of those boys on the start line would have thought I could have done that. But I know I can win these races and do some damage. I'm in good shape and I'm going to go and do something at the trials next week now as finals in Barcelona is my aim.”

Eilidh Child (Stuart Hogg) flew through the first half of her 400m hurdles race and with just one athlete out of reach the Scottish PE teacher took second place with 56:48 and ten points for her team. With the European Championships in sight her 55:17 clocking at the European Athletics festival earlier this month shows she has more to give this summer.  

She said: “I just died coming into that headwind, but still it was a good scalp as I was predicted fourth and I'll have to beat all of those girls for a medal in Barcelona.”

Laura Turner (Linford Christie) recorded a new seasons best and championship record in the 100m. She won her race in 11:31 (+1.3m/s) and finished joint third overall. Although her time was bettered in the A race the winning time of 11:23 was accompanied by an illegal wind so her time kept the record.

The Harrow athlete had the edge over her competitors early on in the race and increased the lead as she crossed the line. She sent home 9.5 points for the Aviva GB&NI collective and said: “That's amazing, a championship record. I was predicted sixth so to get third I've really done my job as Charles asked us to. I'm getting quicker every week and am really looking forward to the trials now.”  

Returning to international representation in fine form, Tom Parsons (Fuzz Ahmed) finished second in the high jump bringing home 10 points and edging GB&NI further up the team standings. Meeting the requirements at 2.10m through 2.14m, 2.18m and 2.22m with ease things got more interesting at 2.25m for Parsons who used up two of his four allotted no jumps but he cleared on his third attempt. He tried for 2.28m but it was a jump too far and Aleksandr Shustov (RUS) took the win.

“That was good, despite the blustering wind I found my rhythm really early on and although I had a bit of a wobble at 2.25m I cleared it. Today was about points and now I'm looking forward to the trials.”

 The men’s 4 x 100m strike four, consisting of Jeffrey Lawal Balogun  (Clarence Callender), Craig Pickering (Malcolm Arnold), Marlon Devonish (Tony Lester) and Tyrone Edgar (Darrell Smith) finished second behind Italy in the final event of the day. Lawal Balogun executed a good bend on the first leg and recovered well from a slight hesitation on the changeover to Pickering. Once Pickering had the goods he was quick to get them to 200m specialist Devonish who ran the baton safely into the hands of Edgar. The men finished the four stage lap in second place with 39:00 and 11 points for the team.

Devonish said: “Well that was disappointing, but it’s good points for the team which is what matters but we have to do much better in Barcelona.” 

Goldie Sayers (Dan Pfaff) had an excellent outing in the javelin, taking second place with a best throw of 59.25m. Her event started with 57.26m, improved to 57.84m with only one dip in performance to 56.17m. Her winning throw came on her final attempt after Russian Mariya Abakumova threatened to take second place.

“That was a really tactical competition and you needed to be a meteorologist to work out when to throw as we were contending with a headwind and a crosswind which is a nightmare. But I got more points that I was predicted and beat the Olympic silver medallist so not a bad day out.”  

Chris Tomlinson (Frank Attoh) began his long jump campaign in good form recording an impressive opening distance of 7.98m.  He over stepped the board on his second and marked 7.88m on his third which was enough for him to qualify for one more jump. Here he jumped 7.15m and slipped to third behind a jump of 8.09m from Kafetien Gomis (FRA)- a solid result and 10 points for the Middlesborough born athlete.

Kim Wall (Tony Lester) won her race and finished sixth overall in the 400m. The Basildon born athlete looked comfortable on the way to her 53:48 clocking and will feature in the 4 x 400m tomorrow. She said: “I beat the German and my predicted placing. I hope I did Britain proud like the rest of the team have.”

Former World Junior medallist Emma Jackson (Alan Morris) felt the impact of her first senior international competition from the gun. She worked flat out to stay with the pack through the first 400m but found her feet and a place in the group as they came into the final 300m.

From there she picked off her competitors and crossed the line in fourth place with 2:04.53, a fantastic effort for the debut athlete who had big shoes to fill with the absence of Jenny Meadows.

She said:” I'm so happy with 4th I was predicted 7th but I wanted to get more points than that for the team. Jenny would have been favourite so I'm pleased to have exceeded expectations on my first senior outing with the team.” 

2008 World Junior medallist Emma Pallant (Mick Woods) ran a tactical 3000m to take seventh place, a good senior debut for the Aldershot athlete. First basing herself towards the back of the group, she gravitated towards the middle unnoticed and from there took fifth place into the bell. She lost her legs and two places with 100m to go but sent a brave six points to the GB&NI bank and said: “I am not happy with that, I could have got fourth. I should have been wiser and saved my kick for the last two hundred instead of using it going into a head wind.”

Barbara Parker (Sean Burris/John Nuttall) cut an impressive figure as she lined up for the 3000m steeple chase race, one twelve women to tackle the grueling event. Parker, who splits her time between the US and UKA’s Endurance house in Loughborough, looked confident throughout but lost ground in the final few laps of the race. She did however make one final attempt in the last 5meters, finding extra strength and dipping for the line to take fourth ahead of Sophie Duarte (FRA) who thought she was safe.  

She said: “The hurdles were scrappy and I struggle with confidence in a busy race sometimes but I came off that last water jump just thinking team points team points and that spurred me in.  I was predicted between fourth and seventh so I've done what I needed to do.”

Joice Maduaka (Loren Seagrave) began proceedings for the 4 x 100m relay team. She swiftly ran the bend and delivered the baton to Emily Freeman (Brian Hall) who in turn gave the goods to Laura Turner (Linford Christie) in a good exchange. Katherine Endacott (Linford Christie) brought the ladies home in fourth place overall with 43:77, taking nine points for their efforts.  

Kate Dennison (Steve Rippon) came into the pole vault competition at 4.20m and cleared on her first attempt. She then strategically passed  at 4.30m in a bid to save her allowance of three fails but used them up at 4.40m. The British record holder brought home three points.

Nadia Williams (Keith Fleming) performed consistently around the 13m distance throughout her triple jump competition. She finished in tenth place, earning three points for the team with marks of 13.29m, 13.38m and 12.99m.  

Having recorded a first attempt of 53.30m in the discus Philippa Roles (Maggie Lynes) then improved three centimeters in the following round which was her best attempt, good enough for seventh place and a valuable six points for her team.

Carl Myerscough (n/a) finished fifth in the shot put with 19.91m, a solid result for the US based athlete who has had a good early season with a best of 61.51m and potential to improve again in Barcelona. Olympic champion Tomasz Majewski took first in 20.63m. After the competition he said: “That was solid and I got the points with a decent throw.”

Former World Youth bronze medallist Alex Smith (Shane Peacock) finished eleventh in his hammer throw campaign with a best throw of 66.72m, which- as the first event of the day- gave the Aviva GB&NI team their first two points of the competition. 


Aviva GB&NI athletes will compete at the Aviva European Trials and UK Championships on 25-27 June in Birmingham.

For Tickets Visit:http://www.uka.org.uk/uka-major-events/2010/aviva-european-trials-and-uk-championships/