20th April 2010

Fraser Headed For Gateshead


20 April 2010

Reigning Olympic and World Champion sprinter Shelly-Ann Fraser will be lighting up the track when she competes at the Aviva British Grand Prix, Britain’s first IAAF Diamond League event, at Gateshead International Stadium on Saturday 10th July.

Fraser, who is the only Jamaican woman in history to win an Olympic gold medal for the 100m sprint, last competed in Gateshead two years ago and is aiming for a winning performance when she returns to the North East later this year.

She said: “I’m really looking forward to returning to Gateshead for Britain’s first Diamond League Event. The last time I competed at the Aviva British Grand Prix was back in 2008 where I finished second so I’m definitely looking to go one better this year.

“It’s great that Britain is hosting two Diamond League events as it guarantees more head to heads between the world’s best athletes and  it’s a fantastic precursor  to the London 2012 Olympics”.

Fraser burst on to the scene in 2008 to score an unexpected Olympic triumph in Beijing.  Last year , with victory in Berlin, she became just the second woman (after Gail Devers) to hold Olympic and World 100m titles simultaneously,  in the process breaking Merlene Ottey’s venerable national record with 10.73 and moving her to fourth on the worlds ‘all time’ list.

She continued: “2010 is going to be an exciting year for women’s sprinting as there are so many talented athletes out there at the moment. As we saw from the IAAF World Indoor Championships in Doha in March, the bar in women’s sprinting is being continually raised. Training has been going well and I’m feeling good – I’m sure the Gateshead crowd will give me that all important boost! They were brilliant last time, so enthusiastic and energetic!”

Fraser is one of 14 Diamond League ambassadors and she will return to the city for what will be the UK’s first IAAF Diamond League event.  The new IAAF Diamond League is an international series of 14 events, of which the UK is one of only three countries to have the honour of hosting two events, in both Gateshead and London.   Furthermore, the Aviva London Grand Prix is the only event to have a two-day programme.

Tickets for the Aviva British Grand Prix at the Gateshead International Stadium, Gateshead, on 10th July are available by phone on 08000 556 056 or online at www.uka.org.uk