KJT To Double Up In Tees Valley

Katarina Johnson-Thompson will continue her World Championships preparation when she competes at the Great North CityGames in Stockton-on-Tees next month.

Commonwealth champion Johnson-Thompson wowed the crowds at the Diamond League meeting in Birmingham this weekend, recording 6.85m in the long jump – her longest jump for four years.

And the popular heptathlete will be doubling up on the specially-constructed track in Stockton on Tees, competing in the long jump and the 150m sprint event in the free to spectate event on the High Street on Saturday 7 September.

It is all change for the Great North CityGames for 2019, with the event having spent a decade on NewcastleGateshead Quayside before moving to Tees Valley.

Johnson-Thompson is in fine form ahead of the World Championships later this year and is tipped to be in medal contention in Doha after a stunning resurgence which she capped with heptathlon gold at last year’s Commonwealth Games on the Gold Coast.

She said: “I can’t wait to compete at Great North CityGames next month.

“I love street athletics meetings and especially when it’s in a location we’ve never been to before.

“Hopefully there’ll be a big crowd there and we can maybe inspire some future Olympians.”

Tees Valley Mayor Ben Houchen said: “Katarina is a true world class athlete at the top of her game and to have her racing on the streets of Stockton as part of the Great North CityGames is a real coup. This competition, along with events such as BBC Radio 1’s Big Weekend and concerts by Take That and Jess Glynne, shows that the Tees Valley is now taken seriously as a place that can successfully host major events.

“We’re not slowing down, with more great things set to come, not least hosting a major fixture as part of the Rugby League World Cup 2021, along with hosting a top-tier international team.”

Cllr Bob Cook, Leader of Stockton-on-Tees Borough Council said: “Our High Street will be transformed for the Great North CityGames and I’m delighted Katarina will be joining us for the celebrations.

“This will be an unmissable event, showcasing the best local, national and international athletes and drawing huge crowds to our town centre.”

With a range of events on offer from 100m sprints to the one-mile distance, and including pole-vault and long jump in a specially constructed multi sports arena on Stockton-on-Tees High Street, the Great North CityGames kicks off a weekend of first-class sporting action which includes the Simplyhealth Junior and Mini Great North Run, the Simplyhealth Great North 5k, the Simplyhealth Great Tees 10K and finishes with the world-famous Simplyhealth Great North Run on Sunday. The event is being supported by Tees Valley Combined Authority and Stockton Borough Council.

The athletics action starts at 1pm, and is completely free to spectate with no ticket required.

Entries are still open for the Simplyhealth Great Tees 10K, which takes place before the Great North CityGames begin on Saturday 7 September. To enter, visit greatrun.org/tees10k