Jodie Williams claims the European U20 100m title in a UK U20 record of 11.18 secs

British teenage sprint sensation Jodie Williams has added to the already wealthy silverware on her sideboard, as well as to her birthday presents turning 18 on Wednesday, as she has topped the 2011 women’s European Athletics Rising Star award charts for the season on a respective voting conducted by European Athletics among federations, media and fans.

Mike McFarlane’s charge finished ahead of Dutch multi-event wondergirl Dafne Schippers (HOL), a superb sprinter as well, and breathtaking Russian 7m long jumper Darya Klishina, whose chances may have been dealt a blow after a disappointing final in Daegu, to become the first British female winner of the constitution since Steph Twell in 2008.

The award shapes a fitting top-off to a season that saw her clinch a superb sprint double at the European U20 Championships in Tallinn, setting a UK U20 record of 11.18 secs over 100m (0.5m/sec) in the process, as well as marginally missing out on a first international senior medal at her tender age by a mere hundredth of a second in the women’s 60m during the European Indoor Championships in Paris last March. The previous UK national marker of 11.24 secs also belonged to her from last summer.

Her only complaint out of a sublime campaign may have been that she didn’t get to improve on her last season PB of 22.79 secs over 200m, as well as beating Kathy Cook‘s long-standing U20 record of 22.70 (1979), as she ran into strong headwinds or wet turfs most of the time, setting 22.94 secs into a -1.5m/sec in winning the 200m in Tallinn and 22.95 secs into a -1.1m/sec at Crystal Palace two weeks later. But she has still got one more season on her side to accomplish that as well.

Distance girl Charlie Purdue occupied 13th place in the list despite missing the entire summer following surgery in May.

European Athletics Rising Star Top 5

1.Jodie Williams (GBR), 2.Dafne Schippers (NED), 3.Darya Klishina (RUS), 4.Angelica Bengtsson (SWE), 5.Maria Kushina (RUS)


Jack Green snatches European U23 gold ahead of Nathan Woodward in the final few strides in Ostrava

Jack Green, turning 20 next Thursday, fared well himself to make a creditable sixth in the respective men’s lists, topped not surprisingly by new shot world champion David Storl (GER). The guru Malcolm Arnold-coached athlete hit the peak of his season when he pipped fellow Briton Nathan Woodward over the last few strides coming from well behind off the final hurdle in 49.13 against 49.28 secs in a dramatic final at the European U20 Championships in Ostrava, enjoying also two excellent fourth places in his inaugural couple of outings in the glamorous setting of the Diamond League series.

In his latest appearance, he sneaked under 49 secs for the first time ever in 48.98 secs at Crystal Palace, shaping his current PB.

European Athletics Rising Star Top 5

1.David Storl (GER), 2.Pawel Wojciechowski (POL), 3.Jimmy Vicaut (FRA), 4.Adam Kszczot (POL), 5.Zigimunds Sirmais (LAT), 6.Jack Green (GBR)