Silver hat-trick for track and field stars Cameron Chalmers and Tom Gale at 2019 European Athletics U23 Champs
Sports Performance graduate Chalmers, coached by James Hillier, ran a season’s best time of 45.92 as he was narrowly pipped to 400m gold by fast-finishing Fabrisio Saidy of France in Saturday’s final.
Chalmers returned to the track the following evening and, despite not quite being able to chase down his German opponent, anchored GB to another silver in the 4x400m relay in 3:04.59.
There were mixed emotions for Chalmers after both races, with the 22-year-old saying: “I gave it my everything but it has been a week of nearlies.
“I was winning until the last 10m of the 400m final and I know I could have won it on another day but it is still obviously a good achievement and second in Europe isn’t bad.
“In the relay I got it in a really good position, just a little bit behind Germany, but I couldn’t really spot a gap.
“At the moment I am just absolutely shattered. I am sure once I go home and regroup I will be proud but there are more goals and bigger things.”
Team Bath AC’s Gale, coached by Denis Doyle at the University’s Sports Training Village, improved on the bronze medal he won at the 2017 European U23s by claiming silver in a thrilling high jump final.
After clearing 2.23m at the third and final attempt, Gale guaranteed himself a medal by soaring over both 2.25m and 2.27m at the first time of asking. However, it was Maksim Nedasekau of Belarus who took the gold after winning a jump-off against his British rival, who wasn’t quite able to clear 2.29m.
“I wasn’t the favourite to win and I wasn’t the favourite for silver, so to come in and get another season’s best – I have been improving every competition –was a good day,” Gale told British Athletics.
“I would have really liked that 2.29m, my second attempt was massively close, but I am proud of how I jumped. Going forward I need to be more aware of my position because I wasn’t aware that both of us were equal first, I thought Maksim had won it and my head went after that.”
Attention now turns to this week’s European U20 Championships in Boras, Sweden, where King Sporting Scholar Alastair Chalmers – Cameron’s younger brother – will be contesting the 400m hurdles and 4x400m relay.
Meanwhile, Marketing with Management student Lauren Williams, who is supported by a Santander Scholarship, won two titles at the Welsh Athletics Senior Championships in Cardiff over the weekend.
Williams was also a clear victor in the 400m hurdles, her time of 59.31 being seven seconds faster than the rest of the field.