Steph Twell became the first British runner to take a medal in the women’s 5000 metres at the European championships when finishing third behind Turkey’s Yasemin Can (a former Kenyan) and Meraf Bahta (a former Eritrean) in Amsterdam on Saturday.
Can’s injection of pace, after a slow opening kilometre, gave her an advantage of six seconds at two kilometres, which she had extended to ten as she entered the last kilometre. The battle between Twell and Bahta, the defending champion, reduced the winning margin to less than three seconds as the host nation’s Susan Kuijken, bronze medallist two years ago, finished fourth another three seconds back.
On the same day in Gateshead Luke Van Oudtshoorn, another athlete from Aldershot, Farnham & District, won the English Schools junior 1500 metres title. A personal best of 4 mins 08.47 brought him home more than half a second before Oliver Carvell of Bridgnorth, the England Athletics under-15s’ 800 metres champion indoors, who has a personal best of 4 mins 06.80.