IT may be Scotland’s track athletes who have been grabbing the majority of the headlines in recent years but it was on the field that Scots collected a number of medals on day one of the British Athletics Championships in Birmingham yesterday.

Things were kicked off by Nicky Percy, who won bronze in the men’s discus. The 23-year-old was British champion in both 2016 and 2017 but he couldn’t make it a hat-trick of titles, finishing third with a throw of 56.26m, over a metre-and-a-half behind gold medallist Brett Morse.

The medal rush continued in the men’s hammer with Chris Bennett and Mark Dry grabbing silver and bronze respectively, with Bennett securing qualification for the European Championships in Berlin this summer.

“It’s nice to get the automatic qualification [for the Europeans] out the way and now I can focus on the rest of the season,” the Glaswegian said.

“I want to throw a personal best this year and I want to make the final in Berlin.

“My preparation has not been ideal – I’ve had to miss competitions because of a knee problem. I need an operation on it but I’m putting that off for after Berlin."

Nikki Manson added a fourth medal to Scotland’s total, winning bronze in the women’s high jump with a leap of 1.87m to finish behind Morgan Lake and Katarina Johnson-Thomson.

Last year’s men’s 1500m saw Scots fill the top four spots and there are signs there could be similar Scottish dominance today, with British No 1 Josh Kerr, defending champion Chris O’Hare, Commonwealth medallist Jake Wightman and Neil Gourley all making it through to the final.

“It’s always a nerve-wracker in the heats because you don’t want any accidents to happen but I managed to get through safely," said Wightman, who ran the best time of the three heats. "The final is going to be hard. It is probably the best 1500m field we have had in a long time."

Today’s women’s 800m final will see a strong Scottish presence with Lynsey Sharp and Laura Muir easing through their heats yesterday and they were joined in the final by Mhairi Hendry, who qualified as a fastest loser.

Sharp was European champion in 2012 but has only won the British title once, in 2015. The Edinburgh athlete has had a disappointing first half of 2018, failing to reach the final of the Commonwealth Games in April but she looked comfortable in winning her heat in the quickest time of the day, 2 minutes 3.02 seconds. Sharp must finish in the top two today to guarantee selection for the European Championships though.

Muir also looked in excellent shape, with the recently graduated vet student competing only in the 800m this weekend and will be a strong challenger to win her first British title over two laps.

World Championship relay medallist Zoey Clark is on track to retain her 400m title, cruising into today’s final by winning her heat in 52.26 seconds, with the Aberdeen athlete declaring herself satisfied with her day’s work.

“I’m really happy,” the 23-year-old said. “I have not raced much since the start of this year, so it was unknown to me how I would race but that time is faster than I won the British Championships last year. So I need to focus on the final and get a good race in with the aim of qualifying for the European Championships.”

Commonwealth silver medallist Eilidh Doyle was missing from the 400m hurdles field but there will still be Scottish interest in today’s final with Kirsten McAslan, who has recently transitioned to the hurdles from the 400m flat, winning her heat in 57.48 seconds to progress to her first British final in the event while the men’s 400m hurdles final will include Jack Lawrie and Martin Lipton.

Also in action today will be sprinter Beth Dobbin, who has burst on to the scene this season. The Edinburgh AC athlete is ranked second in Britain in the 200m and will fancy her chances to gain selection for her first major championship, while Grant Plenderleith will be in action in the 400m final, Guy Learmonth in the 800m final and Jemma Reekie and Erin Wallace in the 1500m final.

Elsewhere, the women’s 100m was won by British record holder, Dina Asher-Smith, who broke 11 seconds to claim a championship record and comfortably take the title while the blue riband event, the men’s 100m, was won by Reece Prescod in 10.06 seconds ahead of Zharnel Hughes and CJ Ujah.