British Athletics has today announced a team of 78 athletes to compete at next month’s IAAF World Championships in London from 4-13 August 2017. Selectors have added to those who had secured their places by top 2 finishes in the Team Trials.
Reigning 5000m and 10,000m World Champion Mo Farah headlines the team as he aims to defend both titles in the Olympic stadium next month. Farah, who has not been defeated in a 5000m or 10,000m race at a major championships since 2011, will be looking to pick up his fourth straight world title in the 5000m (2011, 2013 and 2015) and complete a hat-trick of 10,000m world titles, after taking gold in 2013 and 2015.
Also looking to achieve a double success on the track in London is Laura Muir. Muir qualified for the 1500m by winning last season's Diamond League event and has shown sufficient form and fitness (after recovering from a stress fracture in her foot earlier this year) to also claim a place in the 5,000m.
Tom Bosworth was voted supporters' 'Athlete of the Meet' for his performance in the Muller Anniversary Games at the London Stadium on Sunday. Tom is spearheading the popularisation of race walking in the UK, ably supported by Bethan Davies, Callum Wilkinson, Dom King and a host of other developing athletes, but it is Tom who has captured the public's attention after his high placing in the Rio Olympics.
It was the first time that a race walk had taken place in a Diamond League meet. Tom was aiming to break the British record for the 1 mile walk, but smashed the world record in the process to win the event.
Tom Bosworth showed exactly why a race walk was a worthy inclusion in the Müller Anniversary Games as he broke the one mile world record with a stunning performance that sent the crowd into raptures. Moving clear of the field at the halfway mark, Bosworth, who is headed for London 2017 in the 20km event, continued to move clear as he crossed the line in 5.31.08. That bettered the 26 year old record by some six seconds and earned him a $15,000 world record bonus.
“I wanted to make today special because it’s the first race walk at a Diamond League, and I’ve wanted it for so long. In athletics you’ve got to have characters and personality, and in an event like mine, which isn’t seen on TV too much and is quite often misunderstood a lot, I think today was a great advert for race walking. I’m so glad I managed to pull it off and deliver.”
Laura Muir broke 2 minutes for the first time in an 800m race, knocking almost 2 seconds off her personal best, in the Lausanne Diamond League. Laura now heads the British rankings in the 800m, 1500m, 3000m and 5000m. Returning from injury, having missed the British Team Trials at the weekend, Laura was left several metres adrift on the first lap of a swift race. She passed athletes suffering from the pace to finish 5th behind Niyonsaba's 1:56.82. Lynsey Sharp ran a season's best of 1:58.80 in 7th place.
Eilidh Doyle is running into form, with another season's best to take 3rd place from lane 1 in the 400m hurdles. Eilidh improved by more than two tenths of a second to achieve 54.36s.
Nethaneel Mitchell-Blake was voted supporters' Athlete of the Meet at the British Athletics Team Trials last weekend. Nethaneel won the men's 200m in a championship record 20.18s, beating John Regis's time that has stood for thirty years. Nethaneel has the best time by a British athlete this year - 20.02s - and has booked his place at London 2017 World Athletics Championships.
The club introduced Athlete of the Meet award this year, and as the Trials were televised, it was decided by a vote on Twitter. Other athletes in the poll were Morgan Lake, Steph Twell and Elliott Giles, with organisers admitting it had been tough to create the shortlist as there had been so many great races and performances at the Trials. Suggestions from members over social media helped to select athletes included in the poll.