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POLES APART

HOLLY BRADSHAW OPENS UP ABOUT THE LACK OF COMPETITION IN BRITAIN

IT IS OFTEN said it can be lonely at the top. If that were applied to British athletics, there is possibly no athlete to whom it is more apt and that sense of isolation in superiority more apparent than pole vaulter Holly Bradshaw.

No contest: Bradshaw faces little challenge in domestic meets

The 24-year-old British record-holder’s domination in her discipline is never starker than when she competes at the national championships. This year, with all of her competition having completed their attempts at heights ranging from 3.60m to 4.15m, Bradshaw, after watching for the best part of two hours, entered with the bar at 4.34m and sauntered up off a 14-step run-up to pop herself over. Just like that, competing well within herself, she was once more the British champion.

The sad fact is that domestic competitions, such as the Olympic trials, have routinely gone like this since Kate Rooney (née Dennison) retired in 2012. Bradshaw spends two hours warming up, practising jumps and going through the motions before another two sitting, watching, waiting.

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About AW - The best coverage of the No.1 Olympic sport

THE BIG INTERVIEW 14 HOLLY BRADSHAW Why only medals are good enough now for Britain’s top pole vaulter SPOTLIGHT 18 RIO MIGHT-HAVE-BEENS The potential stars of the future who were not at the 2016 Olympics ACTION 36 GREAT SOUTH RUN Chris Thompson and Tirunesh Dibaba take fast victories on the south coast 40 SOUTHERN CROSS RELAY Highgate Harriers and London Heathside crowned champions 42 MIDLAND CROSS RELAY Tipton’s men and Telford’s women take the senior titles 44 NORTHERN CROSS RELAY Lincoln Wellington lead the way with senior double PERFORMANCE 26 Sports science news 28 Coach Insight – Andy Young 30 Circuit training without a gym 34 Hi-vis products reviewed NEWS 6 Relay boys out to make amends 8 Tom Bosworth targets 50km move RESULTS & FIXTURES 46 Results round-up 57 What’s On – fixtures guide REGULARS 22 View From The Stands 24 Young Athlete 61 Quiz – test your athletics knowledge 62 Dip Finish