Yorkshire athletes in medal success at UK Indoor Championships

World indoor 60 metres hurdles champion Andrew Pozzi claimed the British title in Birmingham on Sunday while there was a second-placed finish for Leeds student Keely Hodgkinson in the women’s 400m.

Keely Hodgkinson with the silver medal after the Women's 400 Metres Final at the UK Athletics Indoor Championships. Pictures: PA
Keely Hodgkinson with the silver medal after the Women's 400 Metres Final at the UK Athletics Indoor Championships. Pictures: PA

Pozzi won in a time of 7.67 seconds at the Utilita Arena as he secured a place at the World Indoor Championships that take place in Belgrade next month. David King, who had been reigning champion and gone fastest in the heats, was disqualified.

Pozzi said: “I’d like to run a little bit faster if I’ve got a chance of defending my title from 2018.

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“I’m in good shape, happy to be racing as always and we’ll see how we go.

Jessie Knight (centre) wins the Women’s 400m final from Keely Hodgkinson (left) during day two of the UK Athletics Indoor Championships at the Utilita Arena, Birmingham.Picture: Martin Rickett/PA

“The indoor season so far has been good and I’m still finding my feet a little bit.

“I had a slight interruption after my season opener.

“The times in the event this year is really strong but that’s the same with any World Championships so it’s not something I’m too worried about.

“I’d be lying if I wasn’t impressed by Grant Holloway’s times this year and he’s had a really strong four to five years. He runs very consistently at an extremely high level and it’s up to everyone else to match and compete with that.”

Pozzi had finished second behind American world-record holder Holloway - an Olympic silver-medallist and world champion over 110m - at the Indoor Grand Prix at the same venue last weekend.

Olympic 800m silver-medallist Hodgkinson, the the 18-year-old Leeds Beckett University student who set a new British indoor record over the distance at last weekend’s event, opted to drop down to 400m for this one to build up speed.

She finished second in Sunday’s final in 52.42secs, behind Jessie Knight (52.37), and said: “I can’t wait to watch that race back. That was competitive, a lot of fun and great to be involved.

“The relay is something I definitely want to do in Belgrade and I think with the girls now we have a really strong team.

“I won’t be able to do the 4x400m relay heats because of the 800m but fingers crossed they let me do the final! I think we can put on a good show and win a medal. I’m happy to take the opportunity to do all three.”

European 5000m record-setter Northallerton’s Marc Scott won the 3000m in seven minutes 53.35 seconds to book his Belgrade place and City of York’s Scott Lincoln (19.52m) the shot putt.

Lincoln said: “It was just a matter of getting the job done. I’ve got the European winter throws a week before and now it’s about fine tuning it, we don’t realistically need to be in the best shape - like in the US for example.

“Shot putting as a whole is incredible right now and one of the strongest events in the athletics calendar.”

The women’s 800m final saw Jenny Selman (2:08.29) finish first ahead of fellow Scot Jemma Reekie (2:08.52). Elliot Giles (1:47.99) triumphed in the men’s event.

Lorraine Ugen won the women’s long-jump with a leap of 6.75m, and said: “I’m off to Madrid tomorrow for the final continental tour gold meet and then it’s about getting a decent training block in before Serbia. There’s a rumour going around that I am injured and I am not! I’m saving my legs for three days. Then it’s preparation for Belgrade.”

Cheyanne Evans Gray (7.25secs) won the 60m title ahead of Alisha Rees (7.31secs).

Adelle Tracey took the women’s 1500m title in a time of four minutes 13.14 seconds, with Erin Wallace and Holly Archer finishing second and third.

Tracey said: “I have been British champion outdoors before but to step up in distance to do it indoors feels great.

“The world indoors wasn’t really a target for me, hence why I stepped up to the 1500m. I am in the middle of a big training block.”

Adam Thomas ran 6.56 seconds to win the men’s 60m, ahead of Andy Robertson (6.58) and Jeremiah Azu (6.61).

Thomas said: “I really didn’t think I had won at the end - it was really all on that last stride. To know I am going to Belgrade is beyond my wildest dream.”

Seun Okome won men’s triple jump gold with a personal best of 16.13 metres. Kelechi Aguocha (2.13m) won the men’s high jump and Sophie Cook (4.45m) claimed the women’s pole vault title.