March 5, 2021

British Championships: Imani-Lara Lansiquot claims first British title

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Date: 4-5 September Venue: Manchester Regional Arena
Coverage: Live on BBC Two (Friday) and BBC One (Saturday). Live text commentary on the BBC Sport website.

Imani-Lara Lansiquot claimed her first British title as she held off a strong challenge from Kristal Awuah and Amy Hunt in the 100m final in Manchester.

Lansiquot, already fourth-fastest in British history at the age of 22, came through strongly in the final 20m to win in 11.26 seconds.

Awuah and Hunt, aged 21 and 18 respectively, clocked 11.34 and 11.35.

“The girls really pushed me and it bodes so well for our relay team and next year,” Lansiquot told BBC Sport.

World 100m silver medallist Dina Asher-Smith was one of several big names to miss the event, preferring a season of few, low-profile meetings as she attempts to carry her form to the postponed Olympics next summer.

Lansiquot, who won European relay gold alongside Asher-Smith in Berlin in 2018 before reaching the world 100m semi-finals in Doha last year, said victory was part of her own build-up to Tokyo.

“I came here to try to get my first national title and prepare for the Olympics. I am so grateful to my team for getting me into such good shape,” she added.

Elsewhere, Harry Aikines Aryeetey, a former world junior champion, won his first national 100m title at the age of 32.

Aikines Aryeetey overhauled the fast-starting Andrew Robertson and held off 2019 champion Ojie Edoburun to take victory.

In the field, Jazmin Sawyers won her long jump duel with Abigail Irozuru, with a leap of 6.69m enough to regain the title she won in 2016.

Harry Coppell claimed the men’s pole vault with a new British record clearance of 5.85m, beating the 2012 mark set by Steven Lewis eight years ago.

Cindy Ofili defended her 100m hurdles crown, but came under severe pressure from 17-year-old Lucy-Jane Matthews, winning by just four hundredths of a second. Ofili’s sister and main rival Tiffany Porter had withdrawn from the event on Thursday.

Jessica Judd took the 5,000m crown, while David King held off youngster Cameron Fillery in the 110m hurdles.

There were also victories for Sophie McKinna (shot put), James Whiteaker (javelin), Reynold Banigo (long jump), Jessica Mayho (hammer), Joel Clarke-Khan (high jump) and Kirsty Law (discus).

Paralympic stars Hannah Cockroft and Sophie Hahn won as para-athletics events were included for the first time.

New stage, sparse stars

Manchester Regional Arena
The British Championships have moved to Manchester from Birmingham on a three-year deal

Twice rearranged, the British Championships’ return to Manchester for the first time since 2007 is being staged in a congested weekend in the coronavirus-hit calendar.

While Britain’s youngsters enjoyed the chance to show their potential and gain experience, Mo Farah and Katarina Johnson-Thompson competed at the Diamond League event in Brussels.

And while Jake Wightman and Daniel Rowden made their way safely through their 800m heats, Elliot Giles, Kyle Langford and Guy Learmonth will not add depth and competition to tomorrow’s final, preferring instead to race in France.

However, such clashes should be avoided next season with World Athletics introducing protected weekend windows for national championships.