Olympic and Commonwealth long jump gold medallist Greg Rutherford (coach: Jonas Tawiah-Dodoo) is the latest name to confirm that he will compete in the Sainsbury’s Birmingham Grand Prix on Sunday 24 August.
Rutherford added the Commonwealth title to his London 2012 crown after jumping 8.20m in the fourth round in Glasgow and will now return to the Alexander Stadium for the final IAAF Diamond League of the season in the UK this year.
“I can’t wait to compete at the Sainsbury’s Birmingham Grand Prix. It’s going to be a fantastic crowd and the great thing about having any Diamond League events in the UK is the fans that flock to them and get behind the athletes.
“Hopefully we can continue some of the excitement that the Commonwealth Games has bought to the UK and mixing that with a little bit of Olympic spirit it’s going to be another great occasion. You always compete against the world’s best and that’s what’s so good about it. You know you have to be on top of your game and jump far.”
Prior to the Sainsbury’s Birmingham Grand Prix, Rutherford has his sights set on claiming gold at the European Championships in Zurich. Despite admitting that he will have a target on his back, the Marshall Milton Keynes athlete is thriving on the pressure that has come of his biggest two triumphs in his career.
“I think we’ll see what happens at the European Championships because ultimately if I go out there and win there as well, everybody will be gunning for me. I like that, because if that’s what’s happening, that means I’m doing something right and doing well in my career. I want to be the guy that people want to beat and I want to continue winning. For me it’s part and parcel of doing well and I go into Birmingham hopefully post-Zurich of winning a European title to add to the Commonwealth crown.”
Rutherford’s triumph last night came with the ‘Hampden Roar’ firmly behind him and was glad to prove he isn’t just a flash in the pan after upgrading on the silver medal he won in Delhi four years ago.
“It’s never an easy road and after what happened last year with injury I wasn’t sure if I could carry on jumping. Now I’ve managed to come away with another title. I think a few people had written me off thinking I was a one-hit wonder, but I’m here again and will be here again many more times. I’m super happy. I want to keep going out, there jumping far and winning medals.”
The Sainsbury’s Birmingham Grand Prix will also welcome double world and Olympic champion Mo Farah (Alberto Salazar), world 400m gold medallist Christine Ohuruogu (Lloyd Cowan) and Paralympic stars David Weir (Jenny Archer), Hannah Cockroft (Jenni Banks) and Jonnie Peacock (Steve Fudge), who will line up for the Sainsbury’s IPC Grand Prix Final immediately after the IAAF Diamond League meet.
Tickets for the Sainsbury’s Birmingham Grand Prix on Sunday 24 August are available via britishathletics.org.uk