Athletics - Learmonth starts as he means to go on

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BERWICK athlete Guy Learmonth has set out his stall for the indoor season by recording a sub 1:50 winning time in his opening race.

Competing against Mark Patterson in the 800m at the Scottish Open on Saturday, Learmonth ran a controlled race to cross the line in 1:49.7 - his fastest ever indoors opener by two seconds.

“That’s well and truly blown the cobwebs away and I can’t wait for the next one,” Learmonth said following the race.

The early season time, recorded at the new Emirates Arena in Glasgow, takes him to the top of the Great British rankings, and has thrown down the gauntlet to Britain’s top 800m specialists, including Olympic finalist and World Indoor Bronze medallist Andrew Osagie, who is due to open his indoor season over 600m at the Glasgow International Match on Saturday.

Learmonth has traditionally started his indoor season at the Scottish Indoors Open in Glasgow, and says that this year, following an intense winter training programme, he feels “far fitter, faster and stronger than ever before”.

He now goes on to run in Bratislava and Vienna in two very important races as preparation for the upcoming European indoor trials, which take place in the in Sheffield on February 9.

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