Scotland’s two outstanding female high jumpers, Jayne Nisbet and Emma Nuttall (both Edinburgh AC), are adopting sharply contrasting approaches to their preparations for competing in the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games.
While Loughborough-based Nisbet equalled her season’s outdoor best of 1.82 metres in Gothenburg at the weekend, Nuttall has announced that she is delaying her return home from Canada by a whole month in order to continue to train in Vancouver with her coach Laurier Primeau, the former Scottish Athletics boss.
Craigmount High FP Nuttall, whose best outdoors in North America this season is 1.80m but who has an indoor best from last winter of 1.88m, will now return on July 14.
This means the 22-year-old Trinity Western history student, who originally began her studies at Strathclyde University, will not be able to defend her UK outdoor title which she won in Birmingham last June. But she does hope to find at least two competitions in Canada before her return.
Not all the Scottish team are finding their progress is plain sailing as they prepare for Glasgow.
Capital middle distance star Chris O’Hare, (EAC), one of the first named early selections for the team last year, was forced to drop out of the Dream Mile in the famous Bislett Stadium in Oslo due to a hamstring muscle problem which he will clearly want to get fixed as soon as possible.
Dundee’s Eilish McColgan, the Scottish women’s 3000m steeplechase record holder, is another struggling to find form and has still to break 10 minutes this season.
She was well back in ninth place in Gothenburg in a time of 10:03.65, with Scotland’s other Glasgow 2014 pick, US-based Lennie Waite seventh in 9:58.80.
Two more of the team, Gemma Nicol (Dunfermline) and Jade Nimmo (Falkirk), were in action in Geneva at the weekend. Nicol, who will celebrate her third Commonwealth Games in Glasgow where she will be a member of the 4x400m relay, ran 53.85 seconds for the one lap, slightly down on her season’s best, while Nimmo’s best long jump was 5.98m, though she did have a wind-assisted 6.11m, but still well down on her best.
Former New Year Sprint winner Pat Swan, who missed out on selection for the men’s 4x 400m team, clocked 48.23 secs in the 400m at the same meeting.
There was better news from Loughborough for two more Glasgow 2014 picks as Scottish women’s pole vault record-holder Henrietta Paxton cleared a season’s best of 4.30m and 5000 metres choice Laura Whittle clocked 8:59.57 for 3000m. Scottish discus No.1 Nick Percy also set a personal best of 58.12m in winning the South of England title.
Meanwhile, Edinburgh AC’s 15-year-old sprint sensation Cameron Tindle set a North of England Schools 200m championship record of 22.17 secs into the wind at Gateshead on Saturday.
Another of coach Henry Gray’s athletes, Dunbar’s Maria Lyle won the 100m in 14.71 secs and the 200m in 31.03 at the England Disability Championships. Glasgow’s Para-Olympian medallist Stef Reid won the long jump with 5.37m.