AVIVA 2012 TRIALS: Nerveless Bleasdale books Olympic place with British record
HOLLY Bleasdale delivered under the most extreme pressure to secure her spot on Team GB - and claim a new British pole vault record.
IMPRESSIVE: Holly Bleasdale set a new British record to book her Team GB seleciton for London 2012 (Getty Images/Aviva Athletics)
The 20-year old underlined her Olympic credentials when she soared to a massive 4.87 metre personal best earlier this season.
But that performance was indoors and didn't count towards Olympic selection and she arrived at Alexander Stadium with an outdoor best this season of 4.43m - outside the required standard.
Needing to finish in the top two and clear 4.50m to book her place, Bleasdale failed her first two attempts at the height.
But she saved her best for last - creeping over the bar to also defend her national title ahead of Kate Dennison, who also qualified for the Games.
And still she wasn't finished, soaring over a championship record 4.60m and then clearing a British record 4.71m at her second attempt.
Perri Shakes Drayton held off the challenge of this year's British number one Eilidh Child to retain her 400m hurdles title- although both athletes booked their Olympic places with the top two finish.
"It was a bit bittersweet because obviously I’d like to have won the race but I hit that last hurdle," said Child.
"I crossed the finish line a bit gutted but then I’m going to the Olympics so I’m really happy at the same time. It’s a bit of a funny feeling."
Martyn Rooney and Conrad Williams finished one two in the men's 400m and James Ellington and Christian Malcolm took top slots over 200m to also secure their Team GB berths.
"The race was great, it was competitive," said Rooney.
"I can’t say I ran amazingly but I’m happy just to get a result and qualify for the Olympics.
"Now I can go into the next couple of weeks knowing what I need to do. I’ve got to run 44-low, simple as that. It’s a nice place to be."
Eilish McColgan, the daughter of former world 10,000 champion Liz, shruggled off an illness to win the 3,000m steeplechase and qualify for a first Games.
"I still can’t quite believe it, to be honest," said McColgan.
"I knew that top two would secure my place but there’s a difference between thinking about doing it and actually doing it so I’m so pleased with that.
"The way I was feeling this week, to come out and run the way I did, I’m so happy that I’ve done it now. I can just rest and prepare for the games now. I’m so excited about it, I can’t wait."
Barbara Parker, who smashed the British steeplechase record earlier this month, will join her on the team but opted to contest the 5,000m - which Jo Pavey won to secure her fourth consecutive Games appearance, although her Olympic target remains the 10,000m.
Laura Weightman produced a devastating final lap to obliterate her rivals in the 1500m - a performance which also guarantees Olympic selection.
Coached by Steve Cram, Weightman has enjoyed a breakthrough year and won by a clear margin, with former world medallist Lisa Dobriskey edging to second in a photo finish, although her selection is far from assured.
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© Sportsbeat 2012