Jake Heyward and Piers Copeland will both line-up in mile race in Gateshead. Pic: NurPhoto via Getty Images

Jake Heyward Looking To Shine Like A Diamond In Final Outing Before Tokyo

By Owen Morgan

Tokyo Olympics-bound Jake Heyward and Joe Brier, along with new European Under-23 champion Jeremiah Azu will be part of a large Welsh contingent at Tuesday’s Wanda Diamond League Meeting in Gateshead.

Cardiff athlete Heyward will round off his racing preparations for the 1500m in Japan by taking part in the Emsley Carr Mile alongside fellow Welsh athlete Piers Copeland.

The hugely prestigious race has been won by the likes of British middle distance legends Sebastian Coe, Steve Ovett and David Moorcroft as well as international superstars like New Zealand’s John Walker, Ethiopian Haile Gebrselassie and Morocco’s Hicham El Guerrouj.

Joe Brier runs in 400m having been given Olympic call-up as travelling reserve.

Heyward goes into the race on the back of new personal bests over 800m and 1500m, which also broke the Welsh record and helped secure his place in Tokyo along with a third place finish at the British Athletics Championships and Olympic trial.

Cardiff-based Copeland has also clocked PBs over 1500m and 800m this season, the latter as he came third in 1:45.77 at the Stockholm Diamond League meeting earlier this month.

Heyward’s Olympic team-mate Brier will be taking part in a 400m race at Gateshead featuring an all-British field.

Swansea Harrier Brier, who flies to Tokyo as a travelling reserve for the 4x400m squad, is joined in Tuesday evening’s line-up by fellow Wales and Great Britain international Owen Smith, of Cardiff Athletics.

The Muller British Grand Prix meeting, which was originally scheduled to take place at London’s Olympic Stadium, will also include men’s and women’s 4x100m relay races featuring Welsh teams.

The men’s team will include Cardiff sprint sensation Azu, who cruised his way to 100m gold at the European Under-23 Championships on Friday night, having clocked the second fastest time by a Welsh athlete in the heats.

Azu will be joined by fellow Cardiff sprinters Sam Gordon, Josh Brown and Aaron Owen, along with Swansea Harrier Dan Beadsley.

Newly-crowned Euro U23 100m champ Jeremiah Azu lines-up in sprint relay for Wales. Pic: Jurij Kodrun/Getty Images for European Athletics

Azu, Gordon, Brown and Beadsley have all run personal bests under 10.50 at 100m this season, while Owen clocked a 200m PB of 21.43 in Cardiff at the weekend.

The Welsh women’s team features Commonwealth Games athletes Hannah Brier, of Swansea Harriers and Birchfield Harrier Mica Moore, along with Melissa Roberts, also of Birchfield Harriers and Wrexham’s Amy Odunaiya.

The women’s T35/38/44/64 100m will feature Welsh T38 sprinter and Commonwealth Games gold medallist Olivia Breen and T44 sprinter Kirsty Taylor, of the Disability Sport Wales Para Academy, who won silver at the World Para Athletics Junior Championships in 2019.

You can watch the Gateshead meeting live on BBC Two from 19:00-21:00 BST with further coverage on BBC Red Button, BBC iPlayer, and the BBC Sport website and app from 17:30-21:30.

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