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Irish 200m runner Leon Reid looks certain for an Olympic place but awaits an Irish and World Olympic decision due to a troublesome court case
On Sunday 27th June, Reid ran the men’s 200m sprint at the Irish Athletics National Championships. He won in a time of 20.7, beating out sprinters like Mark Smyth and Marcus Lawlor for the title.
Reid has shown that he is well capable of blocking out personal issues to focus on his sport.
The runner was charged this month along with 17 others in relation to drug and firearm offenses at Bristol Crown Court.
After the race, Reid said: “It’s been a tough mental battle, but when you win it makes it all worth it.
“Today was all about cementing that place and getting those bonus points. We just have to wait and see. No matter what, I was going to fight for that win. It was a victory for myself as much as anything.”
Leon Reid dominates the men's 200m in 20.79 – essentially qualified for Tokyo now but a big question mark if AAI or OFI select him.
"Today was all about cementing that place. I've done everything I possibly can," he said.
What would it mean to make it to Tokyo?
— Cathal Dennehy (@Cathal_Dennehy) June 27, 2021
It is alleged that Reid was in possession of a handgun and allowed crack cocaine, a grade-A drug to be produced at a property in Bath.
The 26-year-old athlete who trains out of England denies the claims against him. The trial was adjourned and is not expected to begin again until at least November.
🏃Adams and Reid Debut at European Indoor Championships 🏃
Ballymena & Antrim AC’s Dean Adams and Menapians AC’s Leon Reid both debuted at this morning’s European Indoor Championships in Torun, Poland.
— Athletics NI (@AthleticsNI) March 6, 2021
The time in the race and Reid’s world ranking is enough for him to qualify for Tokyo 2020. His problem is that he needs to be selected by Athletics Ireland and then be invited by the Olympic Committee of Ireland.
This recent scandal would not make the sprinter a favorable candidate to send to Japan in July.
Reports suggest that Reid will not be going to the Olympics. Athletics Ireland and the OFI will have to make their in the coming days, until then the sprinter will have a tough wait.