London 2012: Proctor and Bleasdale break records to qualify

By Tom FordyceChief sports writer, BBC Sport at the Alexander Stadium, Birmingham
Proctor sets new GB long jump record

Long jumper Shara Proctor and pole vaulter Holly Bleasdale set new British records to seal their places in Britain's London 2012 team on a dramatic final day at the Olympic Trials.

Young guns Andy Pozzi and Lawrence Clarke held off world bronze medallist Andy Turner in a thrilling 110m hurdles to bag their own two automatic places while Martyn Rooney beat Conrad Williams in a tight 400m and Robbie Grabarz took the high jump as all three qualified for London.

James Ellington snatched the 200m, Lawrence Okoye the discus and 38-year-old Jo Pavey the 10,000m to join them in the GB squad.

At the other end of her career, 21-year-old Eilish McColgan - daughter of 1991 world 10,000m champion Liz - will go to her first Olympics after winning the 3,000m steeplechase.

With athletes finishing in the top two in their events while also possessing the relevant 'A' standard guaranteed selection for London it was a nervy, frenetic afternoon with the cold conditions far from ideal for big performances.

Proctor and Bleasdale made a mockery of both occasion and weather.

Bleasdale has struggled outdoors this year after clearing a remarkable 4.87m indoors in January and had two failures at both 4.40m and 4.50m before clearing 4.71m at her second attempt.

"Today was the first competition I've put a new technique into place, and I felt like I was flying," she revealed afterwards. "I feel like I can go much, much higher."

I can vault much higher - Bleasdale

Proctor, watched in the stands by both Mary Rand and Lynn Davies, Britain's 1964 Olympic long jump champions, put together an impressive series which peaked with her third round 6.95m to beat Bev Kinch's 29-year-old mark by five centimetres.

Proctor was born on the Caribbean island of Anguilla but now competes for Britain because her homeland is a British Overseas Territory and so does not have its own Olympic team.

She said: "I'm just on top of the world right now. I got the British record, I'm going to the Olympics - how good can it get?

"It was not good conditions but I said to myself that London might be like this so I have to prepare and do my best, no matter."

Three athletes went beyond 6.63m in a high-class competition, with Lorraine Ugen a tantalising one centimetre shy of the 'A' standard of 6.75m in second and Jazmin Sawyers nailing a personal best of 6.64 (the longest jump by a junior in the world this year) for third.

But it was less fruitful for Jessica Ennis, who recorded just one proper mark of 6.27m after fouling twice and running through the remainder.

Ennis won both high jump and 100m hurdles on Saturday in classy fashion but with the long jump a strong event for current heptathlon world champion Tatytana Chernova, this was a more chastening performance.

She told BBC Sport: "I'm obviously disappointed with the long jump, just because I didn't quite have my rhythm right on the runway and I'm not jumping what I'm capable of.

"Generally the weekend has been good - I'm pretty happy with the way things are going. I think I'm in good shape and that's shown with my performances so far."

Training partners Pozzi and Clarke, coached by Colin Jackson's old mentor Malcolm Arnold, have both clocked the 'A' standard multiple times this summer.

And a week after Arnold - also coach to 400m hurdles pair Dai Greene and Jack Green - was made an OBE, they marked a changing of the guard in pushing Turner and world championship finalist Will Sharman into third and fourth.

Twenty-year-old Pozzi came through to take his first senior title in 13.41 with Clarke four hundredths of a second back and Turner - who is likely to take the third, discretionary place - a further metre down.

Pozzi seals Olympic spot with 110m win

Grabarz is just one centimetre off the world leading jump this year, and although his winning clearance of 2.28m was seven centimetres below his season's best, he will go to London as a genuine medal contender.

He said: "It was a really good win. It was not as high as I'd have liked to jump, but I think the excitement at having my first national title and qualifying for the Games was why."

Margaret Adeoye won the 200m to secure her place at the games along with Anyika Onuora who finished second.

Christian Malcolm took second behind Ellington's 20.56 secs 200m win, the veteran Welshman qualifying for his fourth Olympics in the process, and world indoor bronze medallist Andrew Osagie underlined his fine form by easing away from Muktar Mohammed and Michael Rimmer to take the 800m.

Perri Shakes-Drayton took advantage of a stutter from Eilidh Child on the final flight of the 400m hurdles to retain her national title as both athletes booked their places in the squad, while the Steve Cram-coached Laura Weightman produced a last lap of 58.42 secs to destroy the 1500m field and do the same.

And Goldie Sayers secured her 10th successive national javelin title to qualify for her third successive Olympics, albeit with a throw six metres down on her season's best.

But while 5,000m runner-up Nick McCormick will be joining her, the man who beat him, Ross Millington, must secure the 'A' standard of 13 mins 20 secs before 1 July to qualify.

Athletes who have qualified for Team GB:


Shara Proctor (long jump)

Holly Bleasdale & Kate Dennison (pole vault)

Perry Shakes-Drayton & Eilidh Child (400m hurdles)

Laura Weightman (1500m)

Margaret Adeoye & Anyika Onuora (200m)

Jo Pavey (10,000m)

Christine Ohuruogu & Shana Cox (400m)

Jessica Ennis (Heptathlon and 100m hurdles - Ennis will be entered for the hurdles as a back-up to the heptathlon)

Tiffany Porter (100m hurdles)

Sophie Hitchon (Hammer)

Goldie Sayers (Javelin)


Robbie Grabarz (High jump)

Martyn Rooney & Conrad Williams (400m)

James Ellington & Christian Malcom (200m)

Andrew Osagie (800m)

Andy Pozzi & Lawrence Clarke (110m hurdle)

Dai Greene & Jack Green (400m hurdles)

Adam Gemili (100m)

Greg Rutherford (Long jump)

Steve Lewis (pole vault)

Andy Baddeley and Ross Murray (1500m)

Lawrence Okoye (Discus)

Nick McCormick (5,000m)