starlet jazmin happy at landing in sporting city

Jazmin Sawyers in the long jump at the EIS. Pic: Dean Atkins.
Jazmin Sawyers in the long jump at the EIS. Pic: Dean Atkins.

JAZMIN Sawyers has no regrets about moving to Sheffield after breaking her personal best in her first competition of the season.

Sawyers, aged 18, moved to the city from Stoke-on-Trent in September to study Law and Criminology at the University of Sheffield - and also to team up with Toni Minichiello as part his elite group of athletes headed by Olympic champion Jessica Ennis.

But after an impressive display at the weekend in the British Indoor Championship at the English Institute of Sport in Attercliffe, where she leaped six metres 10 centimetres to finish in fifth position Sawyers said she can already see the improvements she’s making. “I’m really pleased with a PB (personal best). I’d have liked to have come out and jumped a bit further, but to come out in my first competition of the season having changed coaches, changed technique and up-rooted my life I’m pleased.

“Hopefully I’ll be jumping further than that later in the season but for my first competition I’m happy,” she added.

Ranked as one of British athletics’ brightest young prospects Sawyers is enjoying working with the Minichiello team. In Ennis she has one of the sport’s finest role models and also benefits from training at the EIS, which is the country’s premier indoor facility. She said it was helpful to compete at her ‘home’ track: “It’s good. You know the runaway and what it’s like. Usually it’s just a few kids running round so it’s nice to see it full.”

While Sawyers is mixing it in the senior ranks, her main aim this year will be July’s European Junior Championships in Rieti, Italy. She said: “You have to make the transition at some point. It’s a step up but I’ve been enjoying it.

“European Junior Championships are the goal this year. I still have one year left in the juniors so I will be competing with my own age group this year.

“I’m hoping to qualify for that.”

And as for her relationship with Minichiello? She says it is going well.

“He told me that if I came out and got six jumps in and jump an indoor PB then he’ll be happy - and I’ve done it!”