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Max Burgin wins the 800m at the British Championships after obliterating his rivals

From scattering stardust… to his lunch! Max Burgin dazzles to win the 800m at the British Championships as he wipes out his rivals in the cold – before throwing up and admitting ‘that’s me after every race’

  • Max Burgin destroyed a beautiful field in the 800m at the British Championships
  • He delivered a masterclass of front running confidence to win in Manchester
  • Burgin crossed the line in 1:44.54, an exceptional time for a windy and cold day
  • He then threw up in an interview and admitted that he needed to recover

First he sprinkled some stardust on the track and then he sprinkled some lunch. Max Burgin won’t be the only 800m runner feeling a little queasy after his astonishing performance in Manchester on Sunday.

To see him destroy a nice field at the British Championships was quite something. It was quite another to watch him do it, with the 20-year-old putting all tactical pretensions aside in a masterclass of front-running confidence.

The message in a complicated discipline was simple: forget the nuances, catch me if you can. Dan Rowden, Kyle Langford, Jamie Webb and Elliot Giles – all runners with top-level potential or status – couldn’t. Not close.

Max Burgin won the 800m title at the British Championships after leaving his rivals in his wake

Max Burgin won the 800m title at the British Championships after leaving his rivals in his wake

Burgin passed in 1:44.54, exceptional for a windy and cold day, adding a gold medal to the world No. 1 ranking he took earlier this month when he ran 1:43.52.

Who among the global elite would love to take on this extraordinarily gifted athlete? And by extension, who would bet against winning a medal of any color at next month’s World Championships? In a British team that has few stars, it is his development and that of Olympic 800m silver medalist Keely Hodgkinson, also 20, that offers the best opportunities.

When Burgin was done with this win, achieved with more than a second of free air between him and Rowden, he was approached for a track interview by Iwan Thomas. The former GB rider could barely be caught by Burgin’s exhaustion.

“I am after every race,” said Burgin. “I put so much into it that I’m kind of in a hole after that. It took me up to half an hour before I can walk around again. Today it was only 10-15 minutes – that’s a good day for me.’

Burgin delivered a masterclass of front-running confidence, finishing with a time of 1:44:54

Burgin delivered a masterclass of front-running confidence, finishing with a time of 1:44:54

It was. Speaking of the prospect of bigger trophies at the World Cup in Eugene, he said: “My times are up there with what the best are doing at the moment.

“I have no idea how I’m going to handle a three-lap championship. I have no experience. The last time I did three rounds was four years ago in the European U18s. I go in with high ambitions and see how far they take me.’

It’s no big surprise that Burgin is now thriving. As a teenager, he set world records in age classes far ahead of what was achieved at the time by Sebastian Coe and Steve Ovett; as a young adult, only Coe, Steve Cram, and Peter Elliott lead him on the all-time British list.

Despite losing to a hamstring injury last year, while also juggling a history degree at the University of Leeds, the top tier is now under threat.

However, he vomited in a trackside interview and admitted that he needed some time to recover

However, he vomited in a trackside interview and admitted that he needed some time to recover

Previously, Daryll Neita followed up on her 100m win over Dina Asher-Smith by winning the 200m. There should be concerns about Asher-Smith’s pre-Eugene form as she is only 23rd and 13th in the world this year for the 100 and 200 meters respectively, although she did not compete in the longer distance on Sunday.

For Neita, last year’s Olympic finalist, it was time to step into the spotlight.

She said, ‘Dina and I are good friends. She’s done her thing and now it’s my time to do my thing. I know you want rivalry, we ran yesterday and I won. You can just say Daryll is the British champion and you don’t have to see anyone else’s name in the title.”

Nethaneel Mitchell-Blake, part of the 4x100m relay quartet deprived of Olympic silver for CJ Ujah’s failed drug test, won the men’s 200m. Asked about Ujah, he said: ‘That is a very good friend of mine. I forgive him.’

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