Perri Shakes-Drayton won Britain’s second gold medal at the European Athletics Indoor Championships and now she wants to carry on her blistering form outdoors.
The 400m hurdles specialist has been unstoppable in the flat 400m in Gothenburg having won both her heat and semi-final, setting a European leading time of 51.03seconds in the latter.
And, while cautious with people predicting that she would win the final, Shakes-Drayton lived up to her billing as she took gold in a world leading time of 50.85 ahead of fellow Brit Eilidh Child.
Child took silver with a personal best of 51.45 with Moa Hjelmer a distant third with the two Brits paving the way for four medals for the team on the final morning in Sweden.
Shana Cox was sixth as the third Brit in the women’s 400m final and Shakes-Drayton, who failed to make the 400m hurdles final at the London 2012 Olympics, is now targeting outdoor success.
“I am over the moon. A lot of people were already putting the gold on me,” said Shakes-Drayton – who could add to her medal tally in Gothenburg with the 4x400m relay to come.
“In my heart I wanted that medal and I wanted to come out and win and hopefully this can benefit me outdoors.
“I wanted to stay out of trouble and get to the front and maintain it and I did that in every round. I train in the morning so I am used to early starts.”
Nigel Levine was the best of three more Brits in the men’s 400m final winning silver while Mukhtar Mohammed claimed bronze in the 800m final for four medals on the final morning.
Levine ran a season’s best 46.21 after a coming together with Russian Pavel Trenikhin to finish second behind European outdoor champion Pavel Maslak.
Michael Bingham placed fifth and Richard Strachan sixth and Levine couldn’t quite believe that he had contributed to Britain’s medal tally, which currently stands at five, in Gothenburg.
“That was my first European indoor final and to get silver, I’m speechless,” said Levine. “They are all human and all beatable and I wanted to go out there and give it my best.
“And to finish second in a season’s best from lane three, what can I say.”
Mohammed also had a coming together with Anis Ananenka of Belarus but battled to bronze in the 800m final in 1:49.60minutes behind Adam Kszczot and Kevin Lopez.
Meanwhile British team captain Jenny Meadows finished an agonising fourth in the women’s 800m final, leading at the halfway stage but eventually finish 0.31seconds off the podium.
World indoor champion Yamile Aldama was sixth in the women’s triple jump final with a season’s best effort of 13.95m while Lauren Howarth finished in the exact same position in the 3000m final.
Howarth finished the race battered and bruised after being barged to the ground early on but, with the race restarted after the incident, she clocked 9:04.04 to finish sixth on her senior British debut.
© Sportsbeat 2013