Scottish 1-2-3 (again) in Men’s 1500m amid eight British Champs medals

Saturday 25th June 2022

All Scottish 1-2-3 on the Men’s 1500m podium at the Muller British Champs once again (Photo by Getty Images for British Athletics)


(*Report subject to corrections and additions in due course. Apologies if any significant omissions).

Manchester’s Regional Athletics Arena boasts a striking blue track but, in the Men’s 1500m final of the Muller British Champs, it might as well have been decorated by a Saltire. Again.

Scottish athletes went 1-2-3 for the medals as Jake Wightman claimed his first gold medal at these championships after a number of years of endeavour and frustration.

Neil Gourley followed Wightman home for second place and automatic selection for the World Champs – with Josh Kerr left to sweat momentarily for a photo finish which duly gave him bronze and a third place that may prove pivotal in discretionary selections for Eugene.

It was the fourth time in six years that the Men’s 1500m has delivered an all-Scottish podium with Wightman now joining Chris O’Hare, Gourley and Kerr as recent British champions.

Minute before the men took centre stage, Laura Muir had claimed gold in the Women’s 1500m final and, at that point, the Scottish medal tally went from three to six in less than a second.

It climbed to eight by the close of play to make it an excellent day for our athletes, coaches and clubs.

Here are the medals achieved . . .

GOLD: Laura Muir 1500m, Jake Wightman 1500m

SILVER: Neil Gourley 1500m; Kirsty Law Discus; David Smith High Jump; Nicole Yeargin 400m

BRONZE: Josh Kerr 1500m, Sarah Inglis 5000m

It was a good day for our sprinters, too, as Adam Thomas and Alisha Rees both made it through to the 100m finals with strong runs and excellent (windy) times against their names.

Adam was sixth in his final with 10.14 windy (after a 10.08 windy in the semi) and Alisha was seventh with 11.34 windy in her final and an 11.29w in the semi.

Krishawn Aiken was a DQ unfortunately while Alyson Bell (11.59w) and Sarah Malone (11.89w) featured in the semis as well as Alisha.

Wightman won the eagerly-awaited 1500m showdown race in 3:40.26 with Gourley just behind at 3:4038 as Kerr clocked 3:40.63 (with Heyward at 3:40.66).

‘I am very very relieved because there have been a few occasions where I have been so close to winning this title,’ said Jake, who had won two silvers and three bronzes in this event in recent years.

‘The target was to come top two, however, to be a British champ going into Worlds is a real confidence booster so it’s a massive relief. It was just brilliant for a Scottish 1-2-3 to happen.

‘It’s a tough event to be in the 1500m because it’s such a strong event, but I’m confident and currently in the best shape I have ever been, so hopefully I can go out there and try to get myself a medal.

‘The main aim is to get a medal at the Worlds, as well as getting another medal at the Commonwealth Games would be an amazing achievement.’

Fellow champion Muir watched the Men’s race unfold from a corner of the stadium before undertaking her media duties in Manchester.

‘I am really happy with that today and to become British Champion at 1500m again,’ said Laura, who closed with a last lap of 60 seconds. Megan Davies was ninth in that final.

‘I cannot afford to ease up and am trying to get something out of every time I run. I was feeling a bit race rusty a couple of weeks ago so it is nice to get some good races under my belt. Now the training is translating into the races.

‘I am very excited for Oregon now and am really determined to get a medal.’

In the Women’s 400m final, there was second place for Nicole Yeargin at 51.69 with Zoey Clark sixth in that race.

Pitreavie AAC’s American-based Nicole is now in the Worlds team.

‘I’m excited last time in Oregon last year I ran my PR so I’m very excited to go back and see what I can do back on that track.

‘I was just happy to get second, I wasn’t too pleased with my performance yesterday. I was happy to come out here today and hit it hard.’

Kirsty Law was another silver medallist in the discus, with a throw of 55.18m. Kirsty was pleased at least to put a poor performance in last year’s British Champs behind her.

‘The aim was just to throw the furthest I could and to get back on the podium as last year I didn’t have a very good British Champs, so I’m happier now than then.’

David Smith landed the first Scottish medal of the day in the Men’s High Jump.

The competition was severely affected by the strong winds in the stadium and a 2.18 clearance was David’s best and enough for silver, as the gold went to Joel Clarke-Khan at 2.21. Will Grimsey was in the mix up to 2.15 but had to settle for fourth place.

‘It was hard out there and pleased to get the silver medal but not really happy with the performance,’ said Smith.

‘There’s no doubt it was affected by the wind a lot which is disappointing and caused me a lot of fouls. But Joel did well, he jumped brilliantly and the conditions are the same for everyone so you have to try and handle that.’

Sarah Inglis took bronze in the Women’s 5000m but can only now cross her fingers on the Eugene selection – with absent Eilish McColgan in the mix, with much dependent on Eilish’s event preference.

Annabel Simpson and Megan Keith were also in that 5000m race.

In the Women’s 800m, there was progesss to the final by Jenny Selman, Hannah Cameron and Jemma Reekie. Cameron’s run for third place in the opening heat earned her progress before Selman and Reekie won their races.

Guy Learmonth was fourth in his heat in the Men’s 800m with Sam Brown in eighth in that race. Ben Greenwood took third in his heat in 1:51.14 but missed out.

Scott Connal was fifth in his heat with a  14.46 windy time in the 110m Hurdles.

In the Women’s 400m hurdles, Emily Craig was fourth in her heat at 60.66 and Leah Keissler sixth in that race at 62.01.

In the Para events, Ross Paterson came up with a windy PB run in his Ambulant 100m race with 11.79 on the clock.

Aidan Thompson finished eighth in the 3000m steeplechase in 8:57.02.

As the action drew to a close, there was disappointment in the Men’s hammer in terms of Scottish medal hopes as Mark Dry finished fourth with 68.11m and Chris Bennett fifth with 67.86.


Tags: Manchester, Muller British Champs

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