Heptathlete sets a personal best 6682 points for victory in Gotzis
Katarina Johnson-Thompson added her name to the long list of greats to have won the prestigious Hypo Meeting in Gotzis on Sunday as the 21-year-old scored a world-leading 6682 points to smash her personal best and go third on the British all-time list on her debut at the event.
The outing in Austria was Johnson-Thompson’s first full heptathlon since finishing fifth at last year’s IAAF World Championships in Moscow, where the European under-23 champion set her previous best of 6449 points. Now only London Olympic champion Jessica Ennis-Hill and 2000 Olympic gold medallist Denise Lewis are above her in the UK all-time rankings and she sits top of the British under-23 all-time list.
Behind her, world silver medallist Brianne Theisen-Eaton set a Canadian record 6641 points, as world bronze medallist Dafne Schippers set a Dutch record 6545 points for third.
Johnson-Thompson, who set a British high jump record with 1.96m indoors in February before claiming world indoor long jump silver with a personal best of 6.81m in March, kicked off proceedings with a 13.47 in the 100m hurdles, a time just 0.03 off her PB and her best ever in a heptathlon. She went on to clear 1.90m in the high jump, throw 12.17m in the shot, run 22.89 in the 200m, leap 6.70m in the long jump and throw 41.44m in the javelin before her 2:08.16 clocking in the 800m secured her victory.
Her marks in the high jump and her weakest event the shot were also the best she has ever recorded as part of a full heptathlon and her 22.89 200m was the first time she had ever gone under 23 seconds and puts her at 19th on the UK all-time list for the individual event. She finished day one in second place, 15 points behind Theisen-Eaton. The Briton’s 6.70m in the long jump is the furthest she’s ever legally leapt outdoors, while her performance in the javelin was an outright PB. Johnson-Thompson dropped to third after six events with 5690 points behind Belgium’s European junior champion Nafissatou Thiam’s 5725 points and Theisen-Eaton’s 5695, but she was the best 800m runner of them all.
“Some rusty performances today, but got to be happy with four heptathlon PBs in each event and an outright PB of 22.89 in the 200m,” Johnson-Thompson tweeted after the first day of competition.
On Sunday, she added: “Can’t believe the weekend, a win in Gotzis and a massive PB of 6682! #happygirl.”
Joining Johnson-Thompson in Gotzis was Morgan Lake, the 17-year-old talent who recently smashed Johnson-Thompson’s British youth heptathlon best with 5896 points at the age of 16 to become the youngest ever winner of the Multistars event in Florence. Following her first ever senior heptathlon, she then also went on to break the UK junior high jump record with a clearance of 1.93m in Loughborough.
Lake continued to impress in Austria, breaking the 6000 points barrier for the first time to finish 17th with 6081 points to equal the European youth best and go second in the world junior list for 2014. Her results included big PBs in the shot (14.85m), 200m (24.59) and javelin (39.74m).
In the decathlon, two-time world champion Trey Hardee returned to his winning ways to set a world-leading 8518 points for victory. It was the American’s first decathlon since claiming Olympic silver in London, having struggled with injury in 2013. He beat Germany’s Kai Kazmirek by 47 points.
Behind them, Britain’s Ashley Bryant scored 8141 points to go third on the British all-time list behind Daley Thompson and Dean Macey, while British indoor heptathlon record-holder John Lane scored 7846 points for 12th.
Lane later tweeted: “Sprained ankle, pulled calf, face red as a tomato… But loved every second of this weekend! Very happy to somehow finish the decathlon.”
» Full results can be found here