Radio Sandwell Sport

Perri Shakes-Drayton wins 400m European Indoors gold

2013-03-03 13:33:44

Perri Shakes Drayton

Perri Shakes-Drayton won Great Britain's second gold medal of the European Indoor Championships with a scintillating performance in the 400m.

The 24-year-old finished clear of the field in a time of 50.85 seconds to add to Holly Bleasdale's gold on Saturday.

Fellow Briton Eilidh Child ran a personal best time of 51.42s to take silver while Shana Cox finished sixth.

Nigel Levine won silver in the 400m final and Mukhtar Mohammed took bronze in the men's 800m race.

It was an impressive performance by Shakes-Drayton, who specialises in the 400m hurdles outdoors, and the medal is the London-born athlete's first individual gold at a major championship.

"A lot of people were tipping me for gold," Shakes-Drayton told BBC Sport. " I said I can't be too complacent - I just wanted to stay out of trouble.

"I just hope it will benefit me when it comes to the outdoors, really."

While Shakes-Drayton was one of the favourites heading into her race, Levine had to produce a season's best to take silver in the 400m.

"I can't believe it," he said. "It's the first time I've made the European final and to get silver, I'm speechless.

"They're all humans, they're all beatable. I just went out there, did my best and finished second with a season's best from lane three."

However, there was disappointment for 800m runner Jenny Meadows, who finished fourth in her final in a time of 2:01.52 minutes.

She led after three laps but faded badly and was overtaken in the final 200m as Ukraine's Nataliya Lupu won the gold medal in 2:00.26.

Meadows was the defending champion, having had her silver medal from Paris in 2011 upgraded when Russian athlete Yevgeniya Zinurova failed a drugs test.

However, she missed the 2012 season through injury and only made her competitive comeback at the British Athletics Birmingham Grand Prix in February.

"It's a difficult situation - I've only been running for 12 weeks," said Meadows. "I said in my team captain's speech not to leave any energy on the track.

"It is really a lack of preparation which costs me because once went past me and a bend comes up. it's very difficult.

"It dents my ego - I'm a better athlete than that."


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