European finalist Solene Ndama produced one of two French victories on home soil at the Meeting de Marseille, a European Athletics Outdoor Classic Permit Meeting, on Tuesday (2) evening.
Ndama, 20, came within 0.02 of her lifetime best with victory in the 100m hurdles in 12.79 ahead of the in-form Polish sprint hurdler Karolina Koleczek - who leads the 2019 European list with 12.75 - in 12.92.
World bronze medallist Pamela Dutkiewicz from Germany was also in the race but she clattered a barrier and hit the track. She assured her fans on social media afterwards that she was largely unscathed except for some visible grazes on her arm.
Ndama won the European U20 title in the 100m hurdles two years ago but the multi-talented Frenchwoman will be contesting the heptathlon at the Gavle 2019 European Athletics U23 Championships which begin next Thursday (11).
Her score of 6290 points in Talence last month represented an improvement of more than 300 points on her lifetime best but she fell an agonising ten points shy of the qualifying standard for the IAAF World Championships in Doha.
Vicaut identifies room for improvement in victory
Jimmy Vicaut also won the 100m in Marseille in 10.20 but the joint European record-holder, who also clocked 10.10 in the heats, gave a frank assessment of his performance.
“It was bad,” he told L’Equipe. “I am not starting well and it’s frustrating me...but thankfully the season is long and it is better to make these mistakes now than at the World Championships.”
The British contingent in action in Marseille performed well, especially in the track events. Ashleigh Nelson won the 200m in 23.03 against a 1.4 m/s headwind ahead of European finalist Beth Dobbin (23.06) and Charlie Grice followed up his win in the mile in Ostrava with victory over 1500m in 3:34.35 ahead of the very experienced Moroccan Abdelaati Iguider in 3:34.84.
European indoor 3000m bronze medallist Melissa Courtney also finished second in the 1500m in 4:05.37 just behind Ethiopia’s Tigist Ketema in 4:05.09.
Elsewhere, Poland’s European U20 champion Cyprian Mrzyglod won the javelin with 81.57m ahead of Germany’s Bernhard Seifert (80.65m) and world silver medallist Darya Klishina finished second in the long jump behind Kate Hall from the United States.
Hall and Klishina both reached out to 6.78m but the American was handed the victory by virtue of a superior second best mark - 6.74m to Klishina’s 6.64m.
The international highlight of the meeting was 19-year-old Sydney McLaughlin winning the 400m hurdles in a season’s best of 53.72 - a time which has only been bettered by reigning Olympic champion Dalilah Muhammad this year with 53.61.
Full results here.