Suffolk star Callum Wilkinson is ‘so excited’ to be competing at World Championships this summer
- Credit: PA
Callum Wilkinson described last weekend’s second spot, in the British 20K Race Walk World Championship Trials, as “a job well done.”
The 20-year-old Suffolk race walking star guaranteed his selection, for this summer’s World Championships in London, by finishing in the top two at last Sunday’s Trials, staged at Roundhay Park in Leeds
Wilkinson had already achieved the qualifying time in both of his first two attempts at the 20K distance, so now it’s full steam ahead for London, via a three-week stay at Font-Romeu in the Pyrenees for some altitude training, and then a week at a holding camp in Paris.
It all adds up to an exciting summer ahead for Wilkinson, who shot to fame by being crowned World Junior champion over 10K in Poland last year.
“It’s crazy that my fourth ever 20K race walk will be at the World Championships!” enthused Wilkinson.
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“I achieved my main aim on Sunday, which was to finish in the top two. I got the job done.
“I walked side-by-side with (GB team-mate) Tom Bosworth for 9.5 kilometres, and it was then a sprint to the finish. I was not far behind him at the finish,” added Wilkinson, who comes from Moulton, near Newmarket.
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Wilkinson clocked 84 minutes 59 seconds, finishing just one second behind Bosworth, who therefore won the British and English 20K titles.
Behind silver medallist Wilkinson was fellow East Anglian athlete Dominic Kind. The 34-year-old Colchester Harrier finished fourth overall, and third Briton, in a PB of 86:08.
King is competing over the longer 50K distance at the World Championships, on the same day as Wilkinson will be making his senior global championship debut – all the race walking events in London will be staged on Sunday, August 13.
Wilkinson continued: “I’d hoped last weekend’s race to be a bit slower, but Dominic actually made it a quick race by hitting the front early on. It was great for him to get his third PB in three weeks, after his previous best had lasted for 13 years!
“Personally, I’m now looking forward to racing over 5K in Birmingham this weekend (British Athletics Championships), and I’ll then be going out to Font-Romeu for altitude training on July 11, for three weeks.
“That will be my first experience of altitude training. I’m looking to have fun, and to enjoy it, training in a high performance environment,”