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Turner to defend titles

Turner to defend titles against world class competition at Powerade ION4 Great CityGames


Andy Turner 110m hurdles

Andy Turner 110m hurdles

European and Commonwealth 110m hurdles champion Andy Turner is determined to defend his two titles at the Powerade ION4 Great CityGames Manchester on Sunday.
Turner’s 110m hurdles and 200m hurdles victories a year ago proved to be a springboard to the best season of his career when he went on to lift two major gold medals later in the summer.

Now the 30-year-old, after a great start to his season in Kingston on Saturday when missing his lifetime best by only 0.01 seconds, is relishing continuing his fine form at the innovative meeting on the streets of Manchester.

His Caribbean victory saw him shrug off the challenges of three world class opponents; Terrence Trammell of the United States, Jamaican Dwight Thomas – the world number three last year – and Ryan Brathwaite.

Turner is under no illusions both Trammell, who he decisively defeated in Manchester 12 months ago and Brathwaite will be seeking revenge at the weekend, while his young Great Britain teammate, Gianni Frankis, will be eager to impress.

The Sale Harrier also faces a severe test in the 200m hurdles, where last year he proved himself the world’s fastest man on a straight track clocking a time of 22.30sec.

Olympic 400m hurdles medallists, American Bershawn Jackson and the Dominican Republic’s Felix Sanchez are returning and will be joined by the reigning Games champion at that distance, Olympian Angelo Taylor of the United States.

Turner admits he is banking on his experience in street races in the last two years – he also won the Great North CityGames crown last September – to help propel him to further successes in the BBC televised meeting.

“I am looking forward to the GreatCity Games on Sunday,” Turner said. “I had a great day there last year winning the 110mH and setting a new world record in the 200mH.

“I’ve competed on this track a few times before in Manchester and in Gateshead and enjoy running so close to the crowd.  The line ups are even stronger this year.

“I had a great start to my season in the Kingston International in Jamaica last weekend running 13.28 seconds to win over the world champion Ryan Brathwaite and former world indoor champion Terrence Trammell.”

Turner, his confidence already sky high in his build up to the biggest challenge, the World Championships which begin in August, added: “I am looking forward to good things in 2011.”

The event, boasting a dozen Olympic medallists in its line-up, will also see Tyson Gay of the USA, the World’s leading 100m performer last year back again and aiming to add the 150m title to the 200m victory he scored in 2010.

This year the 200m will showcase Shawn Crawford, the 2004 Olympic champion and runner up in Beijing three years ago. The American will face Kim Collins of St Kitts,  winner of the Commonwealth Games 100m in Manchester nine years ago, double European sprint bronze medallist Martial Mbanjock of France, while Rikki Fifton will lead the British challenge.