EILISH McColgan retained her British 3,000-metre steeplechase title yesterday, just days after she thought a bout of food poisoning would prevent her from competing at all.
McColgan finished ahead of fellow Scot Lenny Waite after looking out of sorts from much of the seven and a half laps, and although she was outside of the qualifying time for the European Championships, she was delighted that her form had borne up so well in the circumstances.
“It was self-inflicted,” the 23-year-old said of her illness, after running a season’s best of 9mins 50.06sec, some seven seconds outside the Euro standard.
“There was a yoghurt that must have been out the fridge for about 12 days, I’d been away quite a lot, and I came back and saw it on the counter and just wanted it.
“The boys that I live with said ‘Don’t eat it’ and kept making a fuss, but I said it would be fine. I swear to God I must have taken one teaspoon, but it was obviously curdled and stuff. I was like, ‘It tastes fine, you guys are just moaning’.
“An hour later I was like The Exorcist. I was sick everywhere. I couldn’t eat, I couldn’t drink even water.
“I called the doctor because it was two days from the trials. I texted my mum and she said ‘Why are you being so stingy? Just buy another yoghurt. You’re so stubborn’. For the next day and a half I couldn’t do a thing. So I’ve never been so relieved – one, to win a championship and two, to run 9mins 50sec.”