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Sotherton breaks record in Madrid.

Kelly Sotherton broke the British pentathlon record as she finished second at the European Indoor Championships in Madrid.

Sotherton, lying third before the 800metres ( the last of the five disciplines ( clocked a time of two minutes 13.58seconds.

That personal indoor best earned her 913 points and an overall score of 4733, which elevated her to the silver medal behind Carolina Kluft.

The previous British record of 4392 was achieved by Julie Hollman.

Kluft herself set a new Swedish record of 4948 ( second only to the all-time world best mark of 4991, set by Russia's Irina Belova in Berlin 13 years ago.

The only final on the opening of the three-day championships saw Kluft, hoping for a world best, having to settle for a new Swedish record ( the second best ever pentathlon score.

That easily headed off the challenge of Sotherton and Natalya Dobrysnka, the Ukraine record-holder who won the bronze medal with a score of 4667.

"Now I'm only 200 points behind Kluft," quipped Sotherton who only became a world-class multi-eventer last year.

"I didn't want to win another bronze medal, that would have been a disappointment. I wanted to finish higher and now I'm second best in the world," added an elated Sotherton.

Sotherton deserved to win silver as throughout the day she gradually improved her performances during the five-event discipline.

"Carolina and I had a plan to run a fast 800m and she helped in the last lap," said Sotherton who hit the front after 200m. She added: "I have broken the British record and broken my PB by over 500 points so I'm delighted. Although I won an Olympic medal last summer I'm not too experienced yet at major events, so today's competition was about gaining consistency at the highest level."

Sotherton proved a recent quad injury was fully recovered with solid performances in all five events.
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Title Annotation:Sport
Publication:The Journal (Newcastle, England)
Date:Mar 5, 2005
Words:311
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