BISLETT GAMES

Dina Asher-Smith breaks her own Bri­tish 100m record while Chris O’Hare is among the win­ners in Oslo

Athletics Weekly - - Contents - PIC­TURES: MARK SHEAR­MAN

DINA ASHERSMITH im­proved her own Bri­tish 100m record with 10.92 for a close run­ner-up fin­ish be­hind Murielle Ahouré at the Bislett Games.

The 22-year-old, who also holds the Bri­tish 200m record

with her time of 22.07 from 2015, stormed across the fin­ish line in warm con­di­tions at the Bislett Sta­dium to take 0.07 from her pre­vi­ous 100m best which was also recorded three years ago.

Ivory Coast’s world in­door 60m cham­pion and 2013 world 100m and 200m sil­ver medal­list Ahouré claimed vic­tory in 10.91, while Trinidad and Tobago’s Com­mon­wealth cham­pion Michelle-Lee Ahye was third in 11.06. Nige­ria’s Bless­ing Ok­ag­bare-Ighoteguonor was fourth in 11.12.

“I’m over the moon, I can’t

be­lieve it!” said Asher-Smith, who fin­ished fourth in the world 200m fi­nal and claimed 4x100m re­lay sil­ver in Lon­don last sum­mer de­spite break­ing her foot ear­lier in the year.

“I’m so happy with how the race went and to get the Bri­tish record is amaz­ing.

“This year is all about fo­cus­ing on the Euro­pean Cham­pi­onships in Ber­lin in Au­gust, so I’ll use the IAAF Di­a­mond League cir­cuit to pre­pare for that,” added the 2016 Euro­pean 200m cham­pion, who went on to race in Stock­holm last Sun­day.

“I’m free from univer­sity now so I can re­ally fo­cus on my rac­ing.

“There were still bits of my race where I wasn’t happy but it is a process and hope­fully I am look­ing to go quicker as the sea­son goes on.”

The mark puts Asher-Smith equal 13th on the Euro­pean all-time list.

There was a sec­ond con­sec­u­tive Scot­tish win­ner of the 1500m. 12 months af­ter Jake Wight­man fin­ished first, Chris O’Hare claimed vic­tory in an ex­cit­ing race, with his usual su­perb tac­ti­cal run­ning,

clock­ing 3:35.96.

With the sell-out crowd on their feet dur­ing a thrilling last 100m, the USA’s Robby An­drews was sec­ond in 3:36.05 and home favourite Jakob Inge­brigt­sen third, the 17-yearold run­ning a Nor­we­gian ju­nior record of 3:36.06 af­ter lead­ing through 1200m in 2:54.39.

Fin­ish­ing in ninth, 19-yearold Jake Hey­ward, who won the Euro­pean un­der-20 ti­tle last year, im­proved his PB from 3:42.12 to 3:39.84 and

moved from 14th to third ahead of Steve Cram on the Bri­tish un­der-20 all-time list.

“I felt good,” said O’Hare. “I’ve had a rough six months af­ter a great in­door sea­son as I’ve been in­jured, so it’s been a tough road back. I wasn’t in­vited into the Dream Mile so I wanted to prove my­self and I did. I had to go in the last 150m and try to stay smooth.”

O’Hare might not have been deemed good enough for the show­piece event but

his per­for­mance in ef­fec­tively

win­ning the B race, was a bet­ter qual­ity than any­one achieved in a poor Dream Mile which was one of the least com­pet­i­tive and slow­est in the event’s long his­tory.

It was pre­dictably won by world 1500m cham­pion

Eli­jah Manan­goi in a medi­ocre 3:56.95, with Wight­man, who beat the Kenyan last year, only a dis­ap­pointed ninth in 3:59.15 af­ter be­ing well-placed go­ing into the last lap.

The run­ners ig­nored Briton Jamie Webb’s pace­mak­ing

(just 1:57.93 at 800m) and the third lap was cov­ered in 64.34 as Manan­goi shuf­fled past 1200m in 3:02.17. Con­sid­er­ing it was so slow, you would have thought the last lap might have been ex­traor­di­nar­ily fast but a 53 fi­nal cir­cuit – the same as Cram achieved in run­ning 10 sec­onds faster in set­ting his still-stand­ing Euro­pean record 33 years ago, proved suf­fi­cient.

The Kenyan said: “It was a tough race, al­though it looks easy. I wanted to at­tack the last 100m and that hap­pened.”

Wight­man said: “I don’t feel very sharp at all. I thought it was a race that any­one could win. I tried to get into a good po­si­tion but I couldn’t do any­thing with it. I need to get rac­ing and it will come.

“I was hop­ing for a bet­ter run but the pace was so slow from the start that I knew it was go­ing to be a burn-up at the end. I would have pre­ferred a con­sis­tent, faster pace.”

Wight­man was only the third Euro­pean in the race be­hind the el­der Nor­we­gian Inge­brigt­sen brothers, Filip and Henrik, who were fourth and sixth and at least ex­cited the pas­sion­ate home crowd.

The fans were also at fever pitch in the 400m hur­dles. How­ever, Qatar’s Ab­der­rah­man Samba again danced his way to vic­tory, clock­ing 47.60 to win with his usual fast fin­ish, well ahead of a fad­ing world cham­pion and home favourite Karsten Warholm’s 48.22, which was still his sec­ond best time, de­spite be­ing five me­tres adrift.

The win­ner said: “That was Samba over the hur­dles. I have bet­ter en­durance.”

Turkey’s world cham­pion Ramil Guliyev had his most im­pres­sive win since his Lon­don vic­tory as he won the 200m in 19.90. Bri­tain’s Adam Gemili fin­ished fourth in a sea­son’s best of 20.21 as he con­tin­ues his re­turn fol­low­ing in­jury at the Com­mon­wealth Games.

He said: “I’m happy with the sea­son’s best. There are lots of things I need to im­prove on to get back to quicker form but I can’t com­plain.

“That will be my last 200m be­fore the tri­als so I will go back and hit it hard in train­ing, speed up and go.”

Af­ter a promis­ing 57.52-paced first lap, South Africa’s Olympic and world cham­pion Caster Se­menya clocked an un­re­mark­able 1:57.25 to claim vic­tory in the 800m, a race which saw Bri­tish 1500m record-holder Laura

Muir fin­ish fifth in a Euro­pean-lead­ing 1:59.09.

As usual, Se­menya seemed to be at half power un­til burst­ing clear in the last 100m for her 24th suc­ces­sive two-lap vic­tory.

“I ex­pected a bet­ter pace, maybe 55, but it did not hap­pen but the times will come,” said Se­menya.

Muir said: “I would have liked to have been a bit faster and gone un­der 1:59 but it was my first out­door 800m for the best part of a year. And it was the sec­ond-fastest 800m I’ve ever run. I’m pleased and look­ing for­ward to build­ing on it.”

There was drama in the women’s 3000m steeplechase as one of the bar­ri­ers was set at

the men’s height for the first part of the race (see Dip Fin­ish, p62).

Kenya’s world cham­pion from 2015, Hyvin Kiyeng Jep­ke­moi, won ahead of USA’s 2017 world cham­pion Emma Coburn, 9:09.63 to 9:09.70, and Bri­tain’s Com­mon­wealth fourth-placer Rosie Clarke was ninth in 9:42.80.

“Frus­trat­ing,” said Clarke.

“It would help if they could put the bar­ri­ers at the right height. For three laps we had a bar­rier at men’s height which was not ideal.”

Coburn shed fur­ther light on events: “I’m in­cred­i­bly frus­trated that we had to hur­dle the men’s bar­rier on the back straight three times – we were wav­ing around and it wasn’t solved un­til my hus­band went out on to the track to tell the of­fi­cials.”

Coburn, who lost her chance to win in Rome when she fell at the wa­ter jump on the fi­nal lap, added about the Oslo race: “It pan­icked me but I tried to stay calm and feel as easy as pos­si­ble from then on.

“Af­ter the stress, the pace slowed down a lot but to­day was a step in the right di­rec­tion for me – I fell in Rome which was my fault but to­day wasn’t my fault, but I will keep work­ing hard and try to for­get it now.”

Bahrain’s Salwa Eid Naser stormed to 400m vic­tory, clock­ing 49.98 as Bri­tain’s Anyika On­uora placed sev­enth in 51.60.

“I was happy to run an­other sea­son’s best,” said On­uora. “Ev­ery­thing is com­ing to­gether slowly but surely. I’m run­ning races the way I should be run­ning them and get­ting more con­fi­dent. I’m not too fussed about run­ning su­per quick at this time of year. It’s all about be­ing ready for tri­als and then the Euro­pean Cham­pi­onships. I know I’m in great shape.”

Olympic cham­pion Dalilah Muhammad won a crack­ing 400m hur­dles race from fel­low Amer­i­can Shamier Lit­tle – 53.65 to 53.94.

In the field, the best con­test came in a thrilling men’s shot.

New Zealand’s Tom Walsh won with a fi­nal throw of 22.29m.

Walsh led early on with a 21.91m opener and though he lost the lead to Olympic cham­pion Ryan Crouser’s huge 22.21m, the Kiwi showed his com­pet­i­tive met­tle with a su­perb last ef­fort.

He said: “It was awe­some.” Crouser’s response was pretty spe­cial if un­avail­ing as it was ad­judged a foul.

The Amer­i­can said: “I think it was close to 23 me­tres and I guess it was the very corner of the toe board with my left foot but it was a good fight with Tom.”

Tat­siana Kha­l­adovich of Belarus also saved her best throw un­til last in the javelin, her mark of 67.47m break­ing the na­tional record af­ter a very poor start to the com­pe­ti­tion where she was strug­gling to reach 60 me­tres and only up to 61.33m by round five.

She said: “I was not ex­pect­ing such a great re­sult. I knew I was ready but not for that.”

World in­door cham­pion Sandi Mor­ris won the pole vault with her 4.81m clear­ance as Bri­tish record-holder Holly Brad­shaw was fifth with 4.51m.

Brad­shaw said: “In the pole vault there are so many

vari­ables and in be­tween Rehlin­gen and Eu­gene was a 10-day pe­riod and I lost my tim­ing. For a pole vaulter that sucks so bad be­cause you don’t know what is go­ing on.

“Last week I had two amaz­ing train­ing ses­sions and found my tim­ing again. I am in re­ally good shape and just need to tweak things in my jump. Nor­mally I am fight­ing in­juries and try­ing to keep my Achilles pain un­der con­trol, so this is a dif­fer­ent po­si­tion for me be­cause my body is in re­ally good shape and pain-free.”

Qatar’s world high jump cham­pion Mu­taz Essa Barshim claimed an­other vic­tory af­ter a best of 2.36m.

Colom­bia’s Olympic cham­pion Ca­ter­ine Ibargüen se­cured triple jump suc­cess with a windy 14.89m leap.

Dis­cus vic­tory was claimed by Lithua­nia’s world cham­pion An­drius Gudz­ius af­ter a big throw of 69.04m.

Ja­maica’s Danielle Williams won the non-Di­a­mond League 100m hur­dles in 12.60 just ahead of Alina Talay of Belarus with 12.63, who was un­able to repli­cate her re­cent form.

The 10,000m is rarely run in ma­jor meet­ings and the qual­ity of the non-Di­a­mond League 10,000m over 25 laps was so poor it prob­a­bly means there will now be even fewer stag­ings of the event.

Kenyan pacer Do­minic Kip­tarus com­pleted the whole race to win in a very mod­est 28:05.34 just ahead of Aus­tralia’s Ste­wart McSweyn’s 28:05.37 PB.

Andy Ver­non was the other pace­maker and did a su­perb job, lead­ing through 4000m (11:09.08) in a per­fect even sub-28 pace be­fore the Kenyan took over at half­way.

Dina Asher-Smith: breaks the Bri­tish 100m record be­hind Murielle Ahouré

Scot­land’s Chris O’Hare fol­lows up on the ex­ploits of com­pa­triot Jake Wight­man in 2017 and wins in Oslo

Jake Hey­ward: leapt 11 places on the Bri­tish rank­ings

Eli­jah Manan­goi: took Dream Mile

vic­tory from Sadik Mikhou in a pedes­trian 3:56.95

Jake Wight­man: ninth in the mile

Ab­der­rah­man Samba: ran 47.60 to beat

home favourite Karsten Warholm

Caster Se­menya: South African took the women’s 800m as Laura Muir (right) dipped un­der two min­utes in fin­ish­ing fifth

Ramil Guliyev: won the 200m with Adam Gemili fin­ish­ing fourth

Dalilah Muhammad: had a bril­liant bat­tle with Shamier Lit­tle over the bar­ri­ers

Salwa Eid Naser: took the 400m in 49.98

Rosie Clarke: frus­trated af­ter the steeplechase

Tom Walsh: won with fi­nal throw

Tat­siana Kha­l­adovich: also saved her best throw un­til last

Sandi Mor­ris: pole vault win

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