TOM Gale is hoping his career will include more days like the magical one he enjoyed at the Diamond League Grand Prix final in Zurich.

Invited at the last moment to take part in the glittering end-of-season finale in Switzerland last Thursday after finishing third in the Birmingham Diamond League event the previous weekend, the 18-year-old from Trowbridge didn’t look out of place in a stellar field as he came eighth with 2.20m.

“It was an incredible event and such an amazing experience,” said Gale.

“The high jump was one of the first events in the afternoon and initially the stadium was quite empty. But when I went out to start jumping and looked around suddenly every seat was taken. It was just crazy.”

Gale admitted he had problems with his run-up on a recently re-surfaced track but dismissed any thoughts that he was over-awed by the occasion which included a host of Olympic and world champions.

“Not at all,” insisted Gale.

“I felt comfortable in that situation and the only problem I had was with the track as I had to alter my run-up.

“But it was the same for everyone and it is something I will have to learn to adapt to in the future.”

“Okay, I was a little tired after a long season which originally was going to end after the Manchester International (held on August 16th) but I felt confident.”

The season isn’t over yet for Gale as he now has one last competition in Holland next week.

“It is a jump to music meeting which is something I have done indoors and really enjoyed so my coach and I thought it would be a good one to end the season with,” added Gale.

n TEAM Bath AC runner Hayden Bailey was the best played local athlete at the England Athletics Championships in Bedford.

Bailey, who lives in Bratton near Westbury, finished fifth in the U17 men’s 800m in 1min 55.3secs, the second fastest time of his career.

His fastest, 1:54.83, is still the fastest in the west country this summer to leave him top of the U17 rankings.

Elsewhere, Renee Jelf was 14th in the U17s high jump and both Sarah Wilson and Eleanor Webster competed in the heats of the 800m.