Olympian Lee Thompson headlines strong line-up of Sheffield athletes at the Manchester International in National Athletics League
Olympian Lee Thompson headlines a strong line-up of Sheffield athletes competing at the Manchester International in the National Athletics League on Wednesday.
The event at the Manchester Regional Arena will be the first time 24-year-old Thompson of City of Sheffield & Dearne AC has competed since Great Britain’s Men’s 4x400m team crashed out of the Tokyo Games after finishing sixth in their semi-final heat.
Still, Thompson had reasons to be cheerful after he helped the mixed 4x400m relay team set a new British record time at their first-ever Olympics and ran the fastest of any athlete selected to represent Team GB in the 400m relay.
He was given a hero’s welcome upon his return to his training base last week – the Sheffield Hallam University City Athletics Stadium on Woodbourn Road.
“He performed up to his best,” said Lee’s coach John Henson.
"He ran his fastest relay leg (in the mixed 4x400m semi-final) and it was the fastest leg of the whole British team so he was quite pleased from that point of view.
"Lee was pretty pleased with how he performed and the whole experience was great despite the fact it was restricted somewhat by the pandemic.”
Thompson has been selected to represent the National Athletics League team in the individual 400m and is in the 4x400m relay squad alongside Ben Higgins, also of Sheffield & Dearne AC.
Other Sheffield athletes competing include 800m runners Dominic Walton and Emily Simpson as well as Louie Hinchliffe from Crosspool, who has been selected in the England under-20 4 x 100m relay team.
Wednesday’s event will be the final competition of the season for Thompson, who has now turned his focus to next year’s Commonwealth Games in Birmingham, as well as the World Championships and European Championships.
"He wants to qualify for all three,” John added.
"It would be difficult to do all three so you would have to pick two or even if you feel your best interests are in the Commonwealth Games just choose that.
"Paris 2024 is well within his range and possibly even after that (Los Angeles).”
Meanwhile, City of Sheffield 7 Dearn AC’s young athletes won medals in seven events at the Northern Athletics under 13, 15 and 17 Championship in Hull last weekend.