Euro places at stake for Sheffield GB hopefuls

Luke Cutts
Luke Cutts
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Sheffield athletes are competing at the British Athletics Championships in Birmingham this weekend in a bid to earn selection for the European Championships.

The event serves as a trial for the British team that travels to Berlin in August, so strong fields are expected for most disciplines.

Adam Hague

Adam Hague

The first two in each event will gain automatic selection as long as they have achieved the qualifying standard.

City of Sheffield and Dearne duo Adam Hague and Luke Cutts contest the pole vault. The qualifying mark is 5.55 metres, which Hague has exceeded twice this month. Middlesbrough’s Charlie Myers has also got the height but not Cutts, despite him winning Commonwealth Games bronze earlier this year.

However, UK-record-holder Cutts is well capable of rising to the occasion to book his place for Berlin.

A further incentive is that the winners of each event will be picked to represent GB in the restyled World Cup in London next month.

Sheffield pair Grant Plenderleith and Lee Thompson contest the 400m. Plenderleirth has started the seaon well but Thompson has yet to reproduce his sensational indoor form. Both are chasing the 46-second qualifying mark, and there is the added bonus of possible relay places in this event.

Chesterfield’s Alicia Barrett goesin the 100m hurdles. She has run faster than the 13.15-sec qualifying time but too long ago for it to count towards Berlin.

Sheffield’s Joe Dunderdale, second in this year’s UK rankings, is a strong contender to take the javelin title while other Sheffield field-event athletes expected to be prominent include Alan Toward (discus) and Taylor Campbell (hammer).

Andy Heyes is listed in the 5000m and his Hallamshire colleague, Calli Thackery, home from her American base, goes in the women’s race along with Rotherham’s Sophie Cowper.

Local middle-distance entries are James Gormley (City of Sheffield) in the 1500m, Dominic Walton (City of Sheffield) in the 800m and Hallamshire’s Tom Horton in the 300m steeplechase.

Other City of Sheffield athletes in action include Ben Shields and Abilgail Bishell (100m), Abigail Roberts (pole vault) and Ana Garcia (5000m walk). Chesterfield’s Ella Barrett does the 200m.

The final round of the UK Youth Development League takes place on Sunday. In North East Division One, Rotherham are comfortably clear of City of Sheffield and heading for promotion, with Sheffield battling with Middlesbrough for the other promotion spot. The Middlesbrough club have the advantage of a home fixture.

In North East Division Two, Hallamshire are ahead of Bingley by just one point.

The Brampton Brewery Spire 10-mile road race in Chesterfield is on Sunday (9.30am). The Norton 9, at Askern and the Dronfield 10k are also on Sunday, both starting at 10am.

The Norton and Dronfield races have both been rescheduled following their cancellation in March.