CITY of Plymouth athlete David King opened his outdoor season with a bang at the Montgeron-Essonne Elite Meeting in France on Sunday.
King ran a new legal personal best for the 110m hurdles, clocking 13.49 seconds in the heats of the competition held in the Paris suburbs.
That is just one-hundredth of a second outside the Great Britain qualifying time for this summer’s World Championships in London and was 0.05 seconds faster than his previous best recorded time.
King had run 13.54 seconds three times last season, including at the European Championships, where he was making his Great Britain international debut at a major senior event.
The former Devonport High School for Boys pupil did think he had run 13.40 seconds in Bellinzona, Switzerland, as he chased the Olympic qualifying time, but it was not accepted as a legal mark due to problems with the automatic timing.
King was over the moon to finally officially go under the 13.50-mark and to do it in his first outing of the year.
He tweeted: “Ecstatic to PB in my first race of the season.”
King won his heat in Montgeron, but was beaten in the final by France’s 2014 World Indoor Championship bronze medallist Darien Garfield.
Garfield clocked 13.33 seconds to win gold, with King taking silver in the final with 13.57.
The Plymouth athlete will hoping he can go even faster next weekend when he competes for England at the Loughborough International Meet, which is an event where he has always traditionally run fast.