Laura aims for qualifying time after blistering start

Olympic runner Laura Weightman.
Olympic runner Laura Weightman.

Olympian Laura Weightman shaved a massive 19 seconds off her 3000m personal best (pb), posting the fourth-fastest time in the world this year.

The 21-year-old ran 8:43.46 at Stretford, Manchester, last Tuesday – the quickest time run by a woman outdoors in 2013.

She is now the 11th fastest British female athlete of all time over the distance, 21 seconds slower than UK record-holder Paula Radcliffe.

Weightman, from Lesbury, is delighted with her fine opening to the outdoor season.

She said:“It is a really good start and it is hopefully a good sign of things to come this year. I was quite surprised to run nearly a 20-second pb, in what was my first track race of the season.”

The Morpeth Harrier is flying out to America next week to compete in the IAAF Diamond League fixture in Eugene in Oregon.

It will be her first 1500m race of the season and she is determined to start as she means to go on.

“The goal really is to race well and it is a good chance to see where I am at,” she said.

While competing State-side, Weightman will be trying to run the 4:05.50 A-Standard for the IAAF World Championships, which take place in Moscow later this year.

“I would like to run the qualifying time while I am racing out in Eugene,” she said.

Weightman is coached by Steve Cram. Last year, she reached the women’s 1500m final at London 2012, setting a 4:02.99pb in her semi-final.