Paul Blake and Sophie Kamlish race to victory
Paul Blake posted the fastest T36 400m time this year as the University of Bath-based athlete claimed victory at the IPC Athletics Grand Prix in Grosseto, Italy.
The London 2012 Paralympic Games double medalist crossed the line in 55.41, beating the previous best time of 56.26 he had set while winning the Grand Prix in Dubai back in February.
Blake, who is coached by Rob Ellchuk, was also runner-up to Malaysia’s Mohamad Puzi in the T36 100m in 12.82.
The results capped a good week for Blake, who found out that the T36 800m – the event in which he is the reigning World Champion – had been included in the Rio 2016 Paralympic Games programme.
Training partner Sophie Kamlish also had cause to celebrate as she won the T43-44 100m title in 14.27.
The 18-year-old was also the fastest T44 runner over 200m, her time of 31.04 only bettered by Italy’s Giuseppina Versace in the T42-44 competition.
Former World Champion Katrina Hart clocked 15.38 in the T37 100m to finish runner-up to current Paralympic and World Champion Mandy Francois-Elie of France.
Meanwhile, Lawrence Clarke warmed up for this weekend’s European Team Championships in Russia by finishing third in a high-quality 110m hurdles race at the Mohammed VI IAAF World Challenge Meeting in Rabat, Morocco.
Clarke, coached by Malcolm Arnold at the Sports Training Village, crossed the line in 13.56, just three-hundredths of a second shy of his season-best time set the previous weekend in Birmingham. France’s Pascal Martinot-Lagarde took the victory.
Jack Hatton, who is also part of Arnold’s training group, matched the qualifying standard for the European Junior Championships when he clocked 13.75 during an impressive 110m hurdles victory in the South of England AA Under 20 and Senior Championships at Lee Valley.
Seb Rodger, coached by James Hillier, celebrated his call-up to the British squad for the European Team Championships by recording a season’s best of 49.84 while winning the 400m hurdles at the Le Cheile International in Leixlip, Ireland.