More than 100 Olympians from 30 countries came to Wales to help bring a true Games feeling to Cardiff as the Welsh Athletics International turned out to be a great success.
With international stars such as Kerron Clement (USA) and Jehue Gordon (Trinidad & Tobago), Welsh Olympians and International such as Brett Morse, Carys Parry and Lee Doran and other World Class athletes at both Senior and Under 20 levels, the WAI classed as the biggest athletics congregation in the Principality since the 1958 Empire Games.
Jehue Gordon (150) leads Kerron Clement in the 400M Hurdles
The splendid venue for the event, the Cardiff International Sports Stadium, was full in every order of attendance and spectators were treated to a good show, with several Stadium records and two All-Comers records falling, a spectacular women's pole vault competition and the possibility for many young fans to get autographs of all-time favourites like Saint Kitts and Nevis sprinter Kim Collins, who is about to line up for his fifth Olympic Games.
Major broadcasters in both English and Welsh had live link to the event, while the whole meeting was streamed live by Athleticos. All videos from the event are available here.
The event also included an Under 20 meeting which featured several young athletes returning from the World Junior Championships in Barcelona, ensuring quality all around.
A good complement of International races saw Emmanuel Callender of Trinidad & Tobago sprint in a strong 2.7m/s headwind to win the 100m in 10.50s from Australia Joshua Ross (10.51s) before making the double with a new Stadium Record in the 200m (20.89s).
Isac Makwala of Botswana was the winner in the 400m with a time of 46.46s, while Scotland's Guy Learmouth claimed the 800m. His time of 1:48.90 saw him edge the USA's Michael Preble and surprise performer Elliot Slade of Wales - the youngster performing impressively against much more experienced opposition.
Ben True of the USA was a runaway winner in the 3000m: his time of 7:52.58 was a new Stadium record and left all opposition more than 20 seconds away.
In one of the most eagerly awaited events on the night, Jehue Gordon of Trinidad & Tobago won the 400m hurdles in 49.75s - meaning Rhys Williams's Stadium Record gets to live another day - in front of Georg Fleischhauer of Germany and Jamele Mason of Puerto Rico. Olympic star Kerron Clement finished fourth in 50.33.
The 4x100m men's relay was an exciting affair, with Australia just edging St Kitts and Nevis by less than 0.2s, setting a new Stadium Record in 39.79s - a feat achieved also by Trinidad & Tobago in the 4x400m with a time of 3:07.11.
An African Select team lead eventual winners Trinidad & Tobago in the 4x400M Relay
On the field, Kurt Felix of Grenada won the long jump with a 7.69m effort, ahead of local star David Guest (7.20m); Rimantas Martisauskas of Lithuania also edged crowd's favourite Ryan Spencer-Jones in the shot put - 18.11 versus 17.82 the final distances achieved.
Fiji's Leslie Copeland did well to win the men's javelin, but his 76.28m throw did not beat Lee Doran's stadium record from the Welsh Championships; and Brett Morse and Mart Israel of Estonia had to face difficult throwing conditions in the discus, the Penarth Olympian finishing second to the Balt with a 59.99m throw against the winner's 60.88m.
The women's competition saw Trinidad's Semoy Hacket break Elaine O'Neill's Stadium Record with a 11.54s performance in the 100m. The race was of very high quality, with also Tameka Williams (St Kitts and Nevis, 11.56s) and Michelle Lee Ahye (Trinidad & Tobago, 11.62) finish below the previous benchmark of 11.74s.
Hacket did the double of wins and Stadium Record in the 200m, finishing in 23.65s ahead of team-mate Reyare Thomas and England's Emily Diamond. Tjipekapora Herunga of Namibia set a new SR in the 400m: her time of 53.15s beat Joyce Sakari of Kenya in a race featuring British Olympian Lynsey Sharp, while Kenya got the upper hand in the 1500m, courtesy of Jane Jelegat (4:19.98).
Ashley Helsby of England won the 100m hurdles in a time of 14.07s, only marginally faster than Welsh star Caryl Granville (14.09s), while both relays brought new Stadium Records thanks to Trinidad & Tobago (4x100m, 44.70s) and Scotland (4x400m, 3:44.38).
And while Hayley Pitman of England was a winner on countback in the high jump over Wales's Sian Swanson (1.67m), the Pole Vault competition saw a crowd-pleasing show by Denmark's Caroline Bonde-Holm who broke the Welsh All-Comers record with a jump of 4.36m. The previous record, set in 2011 by Sally Peake, stood at 4.30m, and the Welsh athlete will hopefully reclaim her title soon.
A new All-Comer record was also set by Jennifer Dahlgren of Argentina in the hammer throw. The 69.14m performance beat England's Zoe Derham in second and added more than two metres to the previous record, held by Lorraine Shaw.
100m Women - Semoy Hacket (Trinidad & Tobago) - 11.54s
200m Men - Emanuel Callender (Trinidad & Tobago) - 20.89s
200m Women - Semoy Hacket (Trinidad & Tobago) - 23.65s
400m Women - Tjipekapora Herunga (Namibia) - 53.15s
3000m Men - Ben True (USA) - 7:52.58
4x100m relay Men - Australia - 39.79s
4x400m relay Men - Trinidad & Tobago - 3:07.11
4x100m relay Women - Trinidad & Tobago - 44.70s
4x400m relay Women - Scotland - 3:44.38
Pole Vault Women - Caroline Bonde-Holm (Denmark) - 4.36m
Hammer Throw Women - Jennifer Dahlgren (Argentina) - 69.14m
Pole Vault Women - Caroline Bonde-Holm (Denmark) - 4.36m AC
Hammer Throw Women - Jennifer Dahlgren (Argentina) - 69.14m AC
Athletes are required to declare for their event 90 minutes before the start. Food will be provided post meeting. The top 3 athletes in each event will need to complete claim forms after their event. The winning athlete in each event will be required shortly after their event in front of the main grandstand so that presentations can take place.
Directions and Parking:
The competition will take place at Cardiff International Sports Stadium, Leckwith Road, Cardiff, CF11 8AZ. Athletes and spectators parking is available at Cardiff City Stadium. Only Officials, VIPS and Media may park at Cardiff International Sports Stadium.
The railway station in closest proximity to Cardiff International Sports Stadium is Grangetown Station. We are approximately a 5 minute walk from the station, which you can get to by taking a connecting train from Cardiff's main station, Cardiff Central. Alternatively taxis are available from Central Station which is approximately a 25 minute walk away.
Athlete's information can be found here.
Coaches Accreditation Click Here
A provisional timetable can be found here.
The Welsh Athletics International is a unique chance for Wales to showcase the best of Olympic and Welsh athletics talent just days before the start of the 2012 Games.
Many Nations,including USA, Trinidad and Tobago, New Zealand, Greece, Italy, Kenya, Morocco, Botswana, South Africa, Nigeria, Haiti, Grenada, Chile, Brazil, Argentina, Estonia, Poland, Sweden, Denmark, British Virgin Islands, Cayman Isles and Puerto Rico have already shown an interest in competing.
The event is planned to capture the Olympic fever that will be building in the anticipation of the start of the Games, and is well placed in the athletics calendar - just days after the London GP. This meeting also includes an under 20 International pre-meeting, featuring the best of up and coming talent, and giving them vital experience and a chance to be part of a fantastic evening.
This is YOUR chance to be part of history and support some of the best athletes in the world - join the show just days before the start of the Olympic Games!
Tickets are priced at £5 for a grandstand seat - buy them today HERE!
Welsh Athletics International Main Programme (7-9:30pm)
100m, 200m, 400m, 800m, 3000m, 400m Hurdles, Long Jump, Discus, Javelin,
4 x 100m & 4 x 400 m.
100m, 200m, 400m, 1500m, 100m Hurdles, High Jump, Pole Vault, Hammer, 4 x 100m & 4 x 400m.
Men vs. Women:
£17,000 worth of prize money on offer for the International events.
If interested in competing in the International, national events or as an U20 Guest athlete. E-mail meeting organiser James Thie: firstname.lastname@example.org
U20 Programme (5-7pm)
Wales U20’s Vs Welsh Schools Vs England U20’s Vs Scotland U20’s
100m, 400m, 1500m, High jump & Shot put
200m, 800m, Discus, Javelin & Long jump
Senior National Events (Pre main event 5-7pm)
100m, 400m, 800m & 110m Hurdles
100m & 400m
Coaches Accreditation Application
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