BIRMINGHAM RELAYS 2019
Men’s 4x800m - WORLD JUNIOR RECORD
- the BMC Junior 4x800m team of Callum Dodds, Yusuf Bizimana, Fin McLear and Josh Lay took a stunning 5 seconds off the World record, coming home in 7.20.82, averaging 1.50.0 between them! The guys were clearly fired up as each one set out with real intent on their legs. Dodds led off emphatically with a 51 first lap, leaving recent World University finalist, Michael Wilson for the University of Birmingham alumni team, chasing hard to get on terms - Dodds came home in a 1.49 split handing Bizimana, who again tore off round the first lap. Bizimana split was a 1.50 time but he was being hunted down by Birmingham’s Patrick Taylor, running a 1.49 split, which kept the race alive and everyone pushing. Next up was Euro Junior 800m bronze medallist, Fin McLear, who started off a little more gradually allowing Birmingham’s Christian Byron to come level, Fin then used his trademark kick to come home ahead in a 1.52 split and the duty was over to Josh Lay, better known over the 1500m this year, after his Euro Junior Medal last month, but certainly no slouch over 800m. Josh ran an incredible 1.48.8 split, all alone on the last leg to bring the team home well under the previous record, which dated back to 1995, again by another BMC team at a similar meeting held in Oxford.
University of Birmingham men’s team anchored by Ben Waterman, came home in 7.29.51 for a fine 2nd place.
Women’s Steeplechase - BMC RECORD and World Qualifying time
- Georgia Winkcup won a fiercely competitive Steeplechase in 9.37.43, well under the Doha Qualifying time of 9.40 - taking 10 seconds off her own PB in the process. This also went under Hatti Dean’s previous BMC record of 9.43 set back in 2007!
The race saw 5 ladies under 10mins, which is the best ever standard of running outside of the Diamond Leagues on UK soil.
All the competitors were assertive from the start, keen to push the pace with a stunning 3.10 first 1k, the lead changed many times between Butterworth, Bouchard and Forlan but it was Australian, Winkcup, who finally prevailed with stunning last few laps to take the win.
Men’s Steeplechase - deep British field, Norman just missed Doha time.
- The call for a fast steeplechase paced at the World Qualifying time was answered by pretty much the whole of the GB male steeplechase community, the line up certainly the best outside of a British Champs for a decade. Led out by recent World University Games finalist, Mark Pearce, the field quickly strung out into single file with last year’s European finalist, Jamaine Coleman, leading the pack. It was Coleman who kept the pace moving in the last 1k, drawing him and Phil Norman away from the rest. Norman, stormed a last lap in 64 seconds, to take the win against the deepest Steeplechase field outside of the British Champs since 2008, in 8.30, just outside the Doha time of 8.29.
Women’s 4x800m - Uni of Birmingham just miss the British Record by 1 second!
- The Junior BMC team of Sarah Calvert, Molly Canham, Nic Riley and Emily Simpson, were up against a formidable Junior team from the University of Birmingham which included 3 GB athletes, led by European 800m Junior Champion Issy Boffey.
The Birmingham quartet were quickly ahead and in a solo pursuit of the long standing British Record set by an 'On Camp with Kelly’ team back in 2006, which did include some fine young athletes including soon to be 'future star of the track' Hannah England.
Birmingham were led off by Steeplechaser, Maisie Grice, they were off to strong start splitting 2.11 just ahead of Molly Canham for the BMC, who handed off to Boffey (Birmingham) and fellow Euro finalist Calver, both tore round the track solo in a 2.05.8 (Boffey) and 2.10 (Calvert) giving Birmingham a fighting chance at the record. Next up for Birmingham, GB 3,000m runner, Saskia Millard solo’d a 2.11 split ahead of Riley for the BMC to set up the final leg. All down to National Indoor u20 & BUCS Indoor 1500m Champ, Emily Thompson to chase shadows for a place in the history books, going out in a stunning 60s lap to make up time. Emily closed in a 2.10 split, with the team just falling short of what is a tough record, ahead of the BMC team anchored home by Sheffield’s Emily Simpson.