15th July 2016

Doyle's Monaco Delight

15 July 2016 

On an outstanding evening for British athletes at the IAAF Diamond League in Monaco, the standout performance came from Eilidh Doyle (Malcolm Arnold) who in a personal best with a couple of others posting their best ever times.  

There was a splendid victory for Doyle (Malcolm Arnold) in the 400m hurdles in a personal best of 54.09. It was her second Diamond League triumph of the season after winning in Doha back in May. She attacked the race in the opening 200m and maintained her composure and stride pattern to take a big win. It will give the 29 year-old a confidence booster ahead of Rio. The result also means she currently leads the Diamond Race on 30 points.

After lowering her previous best by 0.13 seconds, Doyle commented: “I’m absolutely delighted. It wasn’t even a great race; the last hurdle was very poor so I think there’s a lot more to come. If I get it right, I can definitely go sub 54 seconds.”

In a high quality 1500m race, there was a fifth place finish for multiple global medallist Mo Farah (Alberto Salazar) in 3:31.74 as he turned his attention to speed work prior to the 5000m and 10,000m at the Olympic Games.

Farah spoke afterwards: “It was a tough race because of all the surges. The guys kept clipping me but that’s alright. I still get away with a positive feeling, you know I’m a 5k – 10k guy and I just ran 3.31, so that’s good, isn’t it?”

In the same 1500m race, there was a huge personal best of 3:33.60 set by Charlie Grice (Jon Bigg) for ninth place. It was a big improvement by the Brighton Phoenix athlete who had previously run 3:35.29. The result puts him tenth on the UK all-time list over the distance, placing him ahead of David Moorcroft.

A fine display by Lynsey Sharp (Rana Reider) in the women’s 800m saw her run her second fastest ever time, 1:57.75, just 0.04 seconds outside her lifetime best. In what was a rapidly fast race, the Commonwealth silver medallist ran an exceptionally paced race, settling for sixth place with a number of athletes clocking bests. The race was won by South Africa’s Caster Semenya in a Diamond League Record of 1:55.33.

Robbie Grabarz (Fuzz Caan) leapt a season’s best of 2.31m in a solid high jump competition for the European silver medallist. First time clearances at 2.22m, 2,27m and 2.31m showed Grabarz in sublime form but three failures at 2.34m brought his competition to an end. However he settled for equal fourth place overall.

European bronze medallist Chris Baker (Sharon Heveran) cleared 2.22m but could not go any higher, finishing eighth in the event.

There was a season’s best for Holly Bradshaw (Scott Simpson) in the women’s pole vault, clearing 4.65m with her second attempt. The British champion failed three times at 4.71m but did enough to place fourth overall and collect some Diamond Race points.

There were PBs galore in the women’s 3000m with Steph Twell (Mick Woods) running superbly to clock 8:40.98, taking over two seconds off her previous best. After winning European bronze over 5000m last week, the AFD athlete continued her recent good form to finish fifth overall. Rosie Clarke (David Harmer), who competed in the 3000m steeplechase at the European Championships in Amsterdam, also ran a career best, posting 9:15.04.

There was a swift return to the track for Desiree Henry (Rana Reider) who secured a sixth place finish in the women’s 100m, recording a time of 11.21 (-0.5). The race was won by her training partner Dafne Schippers, the Dutch athlete continuing her winning streak with a time of 10.94.

In the men’s 200m, James Ellington (Linford Christie), who clocked a PB of 10.04 in the 100m at the European Championships last week, raced over the longer sprint, recording a time of 20.59 (+0.1) for eighth position.

In the non-Diamond Race men’s 800m, Michael Rimmer (Jon Bigg) finished in sixth in the sprint for the line. He clocked a time of 1:45.38 in a fast race with the Liverpool Pembroke Sefton athlete who was selected for the Olympic team earlier this week.

Full results can be found here: http://monaco.diamondleague.com/en/home/

Highlights can be seen on BBC One at 1pm on Saturday 16 July.