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RECORD RUN: Young St Albans runner ‘absolutely shocked’ to set new European record

 Published on: 27th May 2024   |   By: Panayiota Demosthenous   |   Category: Uncategorized

A young St Albans runner has smashed a 45-year-old European record, with a performance that has been described as “Olympic qualifying standard”.

Phoebe Gill, 17, from St Albans Athletics Club, ran the 800m at the Belfast Irish Millers Meet in Northern Ireland on Saturday, May 11. She finished the race in one minute and 57.86 seconds, beating the previous Under 18 European record by nearly two seconds.

Speaking to StALBANSnews, Phoebe said: “It’s incredible to have broken a record.  To be honest, it hasn’t really sunk in and I can’t quite believe it yet – it’s just mind-blowing!

“I had messed up the timings for my warm-up and was almost going to give up. When I crossed the finish line, I had no idea of what time I had achieved, and when I looked at the clock, I was absolutely shocked.”

Phoebe has secured the second-fastest time in the world this year for the 800m and moves to the number eight spot on the all-time British list.

She continued: “Rest is really key and as I’m still at school and studying for my A-levels, I have to find a balance between my racing and studies. I am very excited for the prospects of this season and want to focus on qualifying for international races as I feel such pride in representing my country.

“I have an amazing, supportive coach, Deborah Steer, who has nurtured and helped me develop as an athlete; also Adrian Pattison and Steve Bowran who are also part of the coaching team. All have been so kind and considerate in my journey as an athlete.

“The St Albans Athletics Club as a whole has been such a lovely environment to grow and train in throughout the years and I am forever grateful!”

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