World champion Richard Kilty heads to Scottish title success – photo by Bobby Gavin
(We will cover Scottish U17 Champs in a separate report; and also a couple of Scottish Age Group records)
Richard Kilty thrilled the Emirates Arena on and off the track on a fine day for athletics at the Scottish Seniors and U17 Champs at the Emirates Arena.
Records, titles, podium places and PBs were very much to the fore at the indoor venue with Scotland in the icy grip of Storm Gertrude elsewhere.
Kilty, known as the Teesside Tornado, blew into Glasgow and turned up the heat on his 60m rivals over three races to add the Scottish title to those he holds at World and European level – but he also turned on the charm as he signed a vest, presented U17 medals and mingled with his fellow competitors.
Kirsten McAslan was another highlight as she made a ‘debut’ at 800m while there were Scottish title wins for the likes of her fellow Glasgow 2014 athletes Allan Smith, Sarah Warnock, Angus McInroy and Kirsty Yates.
Anna Gordon set a new Scottish U20 best as she won the pole vault in 3.92 and Erin Wallace of Giffnock North clocked a Scottish and British U17 best in the 800m with 2.06.59.
Among the others to pick up Senior Scottish titles were the likes of Jenna Wrisberg, Heather Paton, John McCall, Chuxx Onyia, Sarah Inglis, Chloe Lambert, Pete Muirhead, Kelsey Stewart, Nikki Manson, Craig Moriarty and Stephen Dunlop.
In that 60 m final, Cameron Tindle took third behind Kility and Irish athlete Jonathan Browning with a 6.88 PB in the final after equalling his 6.91 previous best in the semi.
‘It was good to be here and now I’ve a Scottish title to my name,’ grinned Richard.
‘I was in touch with Cameron Tindle through the week and he was excited to be racing me. It is good he has got a PB today.
‘I false started the last time I was at the Emirates! It was my first appearance as World champion in Britain so it was pretty unfortunate and I was determined it wouldn’t happen again. I spoke about it with my coach and Stephen Maguire and we all said ‘the main thing is: don’t false start again in Glasgow’.
‘There actually was a false start in that opening heat and I just made sure I wasn’t moving anywhere too soon. I just stayed in the blocks.
‘It was amazing to be here and to get three runs to open up was good. I spoke to other guys in the Call Room and tried to make sure nobody felt uncomfortable about racing against me. We are all just athletes when it comes down to it.
‘I feel I owe to people when I am at something like this. Every athlete works hard and I respect them all. These guys train hard, they turn out in the rain whether they are Masters, Seniors or Juniors – we’re all working away in our sport. Sometimes when you train you feel sick but you still have to drag yourself out there.’
Kirsten McAlsan – 800m title win
The Women’s 800m did not disappoint, even with Laura Muir a call-off after suffering from a cold this week.
McAslan won it in 2.04.48 with Mhairi Hendry coming through for second in 2.04.97 and Maddie Murray, who led for more than three laps, third in 2.05.47.
‘That was tough,’ grinned McAslan, after her first two races at 800m in four years.
‘I wanted to have a go at it and I am happy with the time and winning the title – but I need more endurance to move up fully to 800m. I will be sticking to 400m for this season, that’s for sure.
‘I enjoyed the heat and the tactics of getting into the race positions over four laps. But the final was tough. I had wanted to take it out a bit to try and ensure a good time but when Maddie did that I was happy to let that happen.’
Murray herself tweeted later:’ Tough to lose it over the last 50m but two solid runs today to get the season rolling.’ There was a Scottish Masters record in that race at 800m indoors for Phillipa Millage in fifth place and a PB for silver medallist Hendry.
Gillian Cooke – triple jump success
*What a moment for Gillian Cooke as she won the Women’s triple jump contest. We believe that was Scottish Senior Championship Medal No 30 – yes, thirty – for the former Commonwealth Games athlete and GB bobsleigh athlete.
For a number of reasons, including the fact there were eight jumps comps to be scheduled, the triple jump didn’t take place in the main arena and it is an issue which scottishathletics will look at for future events at the Emirates.
Big thank you as always to our hard-working team of scottishathletics officials on duty throughout the day at the Emirates Arena.
Bringing the U17s Champs into the same day as the Scottish Seniors was certainly designed to create a busier programme and a better atmosphere and that certainly happened.
Jenna Wrisberg (yellow Giffnock vest) and Alisha Rees contest the 60m gold
With thanks to Bobby Gavin for photography and John Elliott for videos