EUROPEAN ATHLETICS: Grabarz becomes first British high jump gold medallist in 62 years
ROBBIE Grabarz took just seven jumps to become the first British high jumper to win the European title in 62 years.
SUCCESS: Robbie Grabarz took just seven jumps to become the first Brit to win the European high jump title since 1950 (Getty Images)
Grabarz will now arrive at the London 2012 Olympics as a serious contender for a medal, possibly even an upgrade of the silver Team GB's Germaine Mason won four years ago in Beijing.
Grabarz passed at the early heights and entered the competition at 2.24 metres, which he sailed over at his first attempt.
He was crucially the only athlete to clear 2.28m at the first time of asking and then edged over 2.31m at his second attempt.
He got close with all three of his efforts at 2.33m but still claimed gold on count back, with Lithuania's Raivydas Stanys and France's Mickael Hanany completing the podium in Helsinki.
Grabarz follows in the footsteps of Alan Paterson, the last British European champion in 1950, achieving what Dalton Grant, Steve Smith and Martyn Bernard - all medallists in the last two decades - couldn't do.
"There’s a big smile on my face, it feels great to have got the gold," said Grabarz.
"I had a lot of fun and I learnt a lot about myself, I learnt about dealing with the pressure and the expectations around myself.
"I wanted to be as clinical as possible, clearing the earlier heights at the first time of asking and that’s what clinched it in the end.
"I wanted to make it as hard as possible because that is only going to help me when the Games come around."
Elsewhere, Goldie Sayers again missed out on the major championship medals as she finished fourth in a javelin competition won by Ukraine's Vira Rebryk.
Sayers, who also finished just off the podium at the 2008 Olympics, managed a best throw of 63.01m, which briefly put her in bronze medal position, until she was overhauled by Germany's Linda Stahl.
© Sportsbeat 2012