England Athletics Senior and Disability Championships preview

Despite a very busy summer of international championship action and several athletes competing at the Commonwealth Games, the England Athletics Senior and Disability Championships this weekend has attracted some big names.

The Bedford International Stadium is again the setting as athletes compete for the honour of national titles.

Sprints

The men’s 100m is among the highest-standard events of the weekend, with 2019 world semi-finalist Ojie Edoburun (Stuart McMillan, Shaftesbury Barnet) leading the way. He ran 10.07 earlier this year but will be looking to make up for his DNF at the World Trials.

Defending champion Andrew Robertson (Sale Harriers), who has run 10.22 this season, returns. Eugene Amo-Dadzie (Woodford Green with Essex Ladies), who has 10.21 to his name in 2022, is another of five athletes in the field who have run 10.20 or quicker.

Twice T44 Paralympic champion Jonnie Peacock heads the ambulant para sprinters. Former European wheelchair champion Richard Chiassaro goes over both 100m and 400m.

The men’s 200m has Northern Ireland’s Commonwealth 200m bronze medallist Leon Reid with Tommy Ramdhan (Michael Afilaka, Bexley) the quickest English entrant.

Finette Agyapong (Mike McFarlane, Newham & Essex Beagles), the  former European U23 200m champion, who has run 22.86, is clearly the fastest on current form on the women’s side.

In the 400m, Efe Okoro (Tony Hadley, Birchfield) is due to defend his title as Jamal Rhoden-Stevens (Donavan Reid, Shaftesbury Barnet) leads the way on 2022 times with 45.95.

Hurdles

Hayley McLean (Chris Zah, Shaftesbury Barne) heads a top line-up for the women’s 400m hurdles. Both she and Jessica Tappin (Thames Valley) have run below 56 seconds this year, with Wales’ Caryl Granville another strong contender.

In the 100m hurdles, Indian record-holder Jyothi Yarraji (13.04) is expected to race it out against Jessica Hunter (Scott Grace, Shaftesbury Barnet), who is next quickest on this year’s times with 13.12. Alicia Barrett (Benke Blomkvist, Trafford) is back to defend her title.

The men’s 400m hurdles is similarly strong with the athletes ranked second and fourth in the UK this year: Jacob Paul (Windsor, Slough, Eton & Hounslow) and Seamus Derbyshire (Nick Dakin, City of Stoke). Efe Okoro (Tony Hadley, Birchfield) is another who has gone below 50 seconds.

Miguel Perera (Laura Turner-Alleyne, Harrow) leads the way in the men’s 110m hurdles but he should have close competition from Portugal’s Edson Gomes and Australia’s Sam Hurwood.

Jumps

Adam Brooks (Jeremy Dale, Yate) is out to defend his title in the high jump against Australia’s Yual Reath, who has been over 2.22m, and Kelechi Aguocha (Fuzz Caan, Blackheath & Bromley), who has jumped 2.18m this year.

Jade Ive (Sutton & District), a 4.43m pole vaulter, will be hoping to improve on her second from last year.

Charlie Myers (Chris Boundy, Birtley), who became fifth best ever in the UK in 2019 with 5.71m, will be favourite in the men’s event.

The women’s long jump has 6.50m-plus jumpers Jahisha Thomas (Blackheath & Bromley), the reigning champion, and Rebecca Chapman (Cardiff). Meanwhile, 8m jumper Jacob Fincham-Dukes (Jacob Fincham-Dukes, Leeds City) lines up on the men’s side.

Ireland’s Pippa Rogan, who has a PB of 1.89m, is among the high jump contenders.

Throws

The women’s hammer has been a breakthrough event in the UK this year and these championships have a suitably high standard in that event. UK all-time No.3 Charlotte Payne (Paul Dickenson, Reading) should be pushed by Katie Head (Paul Head, Newham & Essex Beagles), with Kayleigh Presswell (Paul Head, Marshall Milton Keynes) another contender.

The men’s shot has the second and third best throwers in the UK this year in Youcef Zatat (Scott Rider, Woodford Green with Essex Ladies) and Lewis Byng (Stratford upon Avon).

UK discus bronze medallist Amy Holder (Neville Thompson; Windsor, Slough, Eton & Hounslow) is another to look out for in the field. On the men’s side, 65m thrower Greg Thompson (Neville Thompson, Shaftesbury Barnet) will be favourite.

The women’s shot line-up is led by defending champion Serena Vincent (Bronwin Carter, City of Portsmouth), while Paralympian Lydia Church (Jim Richards, Peterborough & Nene Valley) is another in action.

In the club throw, three-time Paralympic champion Stephen Miller (Rosalynd Miller, Gateshead), who is a regular in this event, will be lining up again.

Hollie Arnold (David Turner, Blackheath & Bromley), javelin Paralympic bronze medallist last year, is another top name in action.

Endurance

Sarah McDonald (Birchfield), who ran 1:59.91 and won the British 1500m title in 2019, is looking to continue her comeback after injuries. The European cross-country relay gold medallist has competed just once since that year.

Up against her will be defending champion Isobel Ives (Mick Judd, Basildon), who has improved to 2:04.4 this season.

The women’s 5000m is headed by Katie Holt (Alan Morris, City of Stoke) on this year’s times on 15:48.45 and includes eight others who have run below 17 minutes.

Australia’s 1:46 runner Jack Lunn is one of a number of Antipodean guests in the distance events and leading his England-based rivals will be Benjamin Murphy (Mark Waterman, Tonbridge) and Ben Waterman (Geoff Wightman, Ealing, Southall & Middlesex).

Follow the action

The action starts at 10.30am on the Saturday and 10.45am on the Sunday.