WITH an invite to the prestigious Weltklasse Diamond League final in Zurich tonight, Trowbridge high jumper Tom Gale offered a succinct verdict on what is a truly amazing season, writes KEVIN FAHEY.

“It is becoming insane, totally crazy,” said Gale, prior to his departure to Switzerland.

“I have just competed in my first Diamond League meeting (in Birmingham on Sunday) and now I am off to Zurich for the final with all the top athletes in the world.

“This has been a confusing time!”

Gale didn’t just compete in his first Diamond League meeting - he actually finished third behind newly-crowned world champion Mutaz Essa Barshim, of Qatar, and World Championships bronze medallist Aldin Ghazal, of Syria, and ahead of several notable names.

Additionally Gale, who cleared 2.24m, also beat current UK number one and 2012 Olympic bronze medallist Robbie Grabarz for the first time as Grabarz had to settle for 2.20m on the day.

“It was a pretty good day but just to be on the same start line as these guys, who are the best in the world, was an amazing experience,” added Gale.

“My first step onto the senior international stage was brilliant and I enjoyed every minute of it.”

Gale has always enjoyed getting the crowd on his side and encouraging them to clap as he prepares to jump and they clearly appreciated seeing one of Britain’s rising young stars putting on a good show.

He seemed quite at ease in such exalted company and it was telling that he cleared every height first time until finally failing at 2.28m.

Barshim meanwhile soared to 2.40m - the best jump in the world this year and a new meeting record.

“It was an amazing atmosphere at Birmingham and the reception we got blew me away,” added Gale.

“To think that last year I was just happy to qualify for the World Junior Championships (he finished ninth with 2.18m) and now here I am a year later going to the Diamond League final which is pretty much a World Championships in one evening.

“It has just been incredible time.”

The journey is not over yet with Zurich tonight, then Amsterdam early next month before an anxious wait to see if he has been selected for the Commonwealth Games in Brisbane.

Little wonder then that Gale has put off plans for further education (he got decent passes in his A levels) and is devoting his ‘gap year’ to his athletics career.

Find out how Gale got on in Zurich last night at wiltshiretimes.co.uk/sport