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Double chance a happy surprise as Beth Potter conquers the wind

AS THE wind hurled around Highgate late on Saturday evening, Beth Potter questioned the sanity of pushing herself through 10,000 metres of hell with a presumption that there were few potential rewards.

POTTER: beat 10k qualifying marks
POTTER: beat 10k qualifying marks

Thirty-two minutes and 45 seconds later, the 22-year-old Glaswegian - in only her second-ever track outing at the distance - had accumulated not one but two reasons to rubbish her fears by earning the opportunity to double up this summer up at Glasgow 2014 and the European Championships.

Potter sliced over two minutes off her previous best to claim silver in what was designated as this year's UK Championship at the distance, ending up five seconds inside Scotland's qualifying mark for Glasgow and 15 seconds inside the Great Britain standard for Zurich.

With Jo Pavey claiming victory, and Sophie Duarte of France in second place on the night, Potter was comfortable in third ahead of fellow Scot Rhona Auckland, and with no regrets over her decision to persevere. "It was so windy that I was worried I'd exhaust myself and blow my chances of getting the 5000m qualifying time next weekend," she confessed. "I had no idea I was inside the European time as well. I was just concentrating on the Commonwealths but that's a huge bonus."

There were lesser returns for Andrew Lemoncello who claimed jet lag cost him a shot at a European place, with the Arizona-based Scot off the pace in sixth place in the men's race as Andy Vernon cruised to the title ahead of Chris Thompson.

Elsewhere, Jax Thoirs raised his Scottish pole vault record by seven centimetres to 5.60 metres in Seattle while competing for the University of Washington. The 21-year-old cleared the mark on his second attempt to draw level with Steve Lewis at the top of the UK rankings.

Meanwhile, Susan Partridge took victory in yesterday's Bupa Glasgow Women's 10k in 33 minutes and 53 seconds, finishing with a huge margin over Commonwealth marathon rival Hayley Haining, with 2013 winner Elspeth Curran in third.

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