Thompson races to her season’s best for England

Isabelle Boffey, Emily Thompson, Yasmin Austridge and Katrina Simpson. Photo: George Biggs
Isabelle Boffey, Emily Thompson, Yasmin Austridge and Katrina Simpson. Photo: George Biggs

Emily Thompson produced a season’s best performance at the weekend.

The Banbury Harrier helped her England juniors 4x800m relay team secure an impressive second-place finish at Birmingham University last weekend.

Thompson was joined in the England team by Isabelle Boffey, European 800m youth champion Katrina Simpson and Yasmin Austridge to compete against high-quality opposition from the UK, Ireland and the USA.

The event marked the highlight of Birmingham University’s hosting of the Ivy League Tour, welcoming the universities of Pennsylvania, Cornell and Limerick, to compete across a range of track and field events.

Thompson led out the England team against a combined US team, two Birmingham University quartets and a Birmingham alumni team that included Great Britain track stars Hannah England and Alison Leonard.

Running a determined and well-judged first 800m against high-quality opposition, Thompson handed over to team-mate Austridge in second place, narrowly behind the US team.

With excellent runs by Austridge and Simpson, the baton was passed to Boffey for the final 800m. After a measured first lap, Boffey closed rapidly on the US team over the last 400m, almost snatching the victory.

The England junior team’s combined time of 8.39.78 was only narrowly outside both the British and world records for an under-20 womens’ 4x800m team.

Thompson was delighted with her team’s performance and said: “With all four of us having another year as under-20’s, we hope to race another 4x800 next season.

“It would be great to get that world record!”