Ashley Bryant moves to fifth on the UK all-time list as GB athletes impress in Florence
The British tradition at Multistars continued on Friday as Ashley Bryant and Jo Rowland put on personal best performances to secure second-place finishes at the Luigi Ridolfi athletics stadium in Florence.
The event, which this year moved from its traditional venue of Desenzano del Garda, kicks off the IAAF Combined Events Challenge series and saw 2008 Olympic silver medallist Andrei Krauchanka take the men’s decathlon title ahead of Bryant, the Belarusian claiming 8390 ahead of Bryant’s 7985. Not only was it a Multistars meeting record, but was also Krauchanka’s highest score since his silver medal-winning performance at the Beijing Games.
In far from ideal conditions, Bryant improved his decathlon PB by 148 points, which was helped by personal best performances in the 400m, discus, javelin and 1500m along the way.
Tweeting at the end of day one, Bryant said: ”Mixed bag! But over all up on my PB dec. Things are looking good for Gotzis. However need to get my decathlon consistence back, LJ Disaster.”
Moving from 12th to fifth on the UK all-time list, Bryant also became the only British athlete to have thrown further than 70m in the javelin within a decathlon thanks to his PB of 70.44m. However, his points total was an agonising 15 points short of the ‘B’ standard for the World Championships in Moscow and had Bryant jumped just 7cm farther in the long jump, generally one of his stronger events, he’d have broken 8000 points.
Poland’s Pawel Wiesiolek finished behind Bryant with 7727 points following numerous PBs, while fellow Brits Martin Brockman and John Lane failed to finish, Lane pulling out after finishing first and setting a 100m PB of 10.79 in the first event.
Over in the heptathlon competition and GB’s Jo Rowland improved her PB by 257 points to secure second with 5638.
Having finished day one in top spot, The Netherlands’ Anouk Vetter continued to lay down dominant performances to take the title with 5872 points ahead of Rowland.
Vetter’s younger compatriot Nadine Visser finished third with 5577 points.
GB’s Karla Drew started off strongly, setting PBs in the 100m hurdles and 200m, and her eventual 5368 points secured her ninth place, as well as a huge heptathlon PB.