BUCS Visa Outdoor Athletics: Women's Preview01/05/2012
For a preview of the men's entries please click here.
Olympic StadiumThe opportunity of a lifetime will be presented to 1728 entries in this weekends BUCS Visa Outdoor Athletics Championships, as BUCS tests the Olympic Stadium as part of the London Prepares series. With over 56000 tickets sold over the course of the four days it is likely to be a great atmosphere and, for most the of athletes, an experience they will never forget. Adrian Chrismas, BUCS Athletics Commentator, points out the entries that will be looking to make an impact this year.
In the women’s track events there is a real possibility of more than one athlete leaving the Olympic stadium with individual double-gold. Montell Douglas (Middlesex), pictured left at BUCS 2009 representing Brunel, the UK 100m record holder and Olympic semi-finalist, will be odd-on favourite to claim her second BUCS 100m title. The England U23 champion Ashleigh Nelson (Middlesex), who took the BUCS 60m title in 2010, will also want to put herself in medal contention. With Elaine O’Neill (Loughborough), a Commonwealth Games semi-finalist and Irish international Amy Foster (Ulster), the reigning Irish 100m and 200m champion, also likely to make the final the battle for the medals could be a fierce one. Hayley Jones (Liverpool J M), former Euro U20 gold medallist, may have other ideas about who could do the sprint double. She is the fastest woman in the field over 200m and has run 11.46 for the 100m. And the line up for the 200m final could look very similar to that for the 100m. Throw into the mix Emily Diamond (Loughborough), Euro U23 semi-finalist and Jenni Batten (Birmingham), GB U20 international and an ESSA gold medallist on four occasions, and you have another highly competitive sprint final.
Meghan Beesley (Loughborough) is another looking to claim a unique double-gold. The Euro U23 bronze medallist, who is the undoubted favourite to take her fourth consecutive BUCS title in the 400mH, is also entered for the 100mH. But in the 100mH she is likely to face the defending champion Stephanie Gaynor (Brunel) and the twice BUCS champion Zara Hohn (E London). In the 400m Loughborough student Laura Wake seeks to make a successful defence of her title.
Also looking to get amongst the medals will be Laura Maddox (Nottingham Trent), last year’s 200m silver medallist; Joanna Mills (Queens Belfast) who finished 4th at the Euro U20 championships last year and Emma Pullen (UWIC) the reigning England U23 champion and former BUCS gold medallist. There was a thrilling finish to the 800m final at the EIS in February with Sophie Tyers (Bath) just edging out Cally Read (Birmingham) in the last few strides. This final could be equally as close. And could it be a Scottish 1-2? Jenny Tan (Dundee) took the title last year and looking to make this year’s final will be another Scottish student Lynsey Sharp (Napier), the Euro U23 bronze medallist and England U23 champion.
In the 1500m Stevie Stockton (Lougborough), BUCS 1500m silver medallist in 2009, is seeking her first BUCS title as is the 2011 Northern champion and BUCS 800m bronze medallist in 2008 Laura Kirk (Huddersfield). The Irish international Sara Treacy (Loughborough) looks to add outdoor gold to the indoor gold that she won in 2011. Eilish McColgan (Dundee) entered also for the 5000m and the steeplechase in which she won gold last year, should make this final if she chooses to contest the 1500m.
At last year’s championships Louise Small (St Mary’s) took both the 5000m and 10000m title. Charlie Purdue (St Mary’s) could well repeat that double this year. The Commonwealth Games finalist looks to be back to her best after recent injury problems, having taken 33 seconds off her 10000m PB at the recent Payton Jordan Cardinal Invitational.
In the High Jump it should be a head-to-head between Emma Perkins (Cambridge) and Isobel Pooley (Nottingham), pictured left at the launch of Universities Week, to decide gold and silver. Perkins is the defending champion and finished 3rd at the indoor championships in February where the GB U20 international Pooley took the title.
It is a distinct possibility that in the Pole Vault Loughborough’s Abbi Haywood, England U23 silver medallist; Sally Scott, seeking her 3rd consecutive title and Sophie Upton, England U23 bronze medallist, could complete a clean sweep of the medals. In the Long Jump Kim Murray (Loughborough), the defending champion, will have a battle on her hands to take her fourth consecutive title. She faces a twin threat from last year’s bronze medallist Alex Russell (Liverpool John Moore's), back to her best in 2011 with silver at the England U23 championships and a PB of 6.32m, and Abigail Irozuru (UCL), 2nd at the UK indoor championships with a PB of 6.44m.
The only two women over 13.00m in the Triple Junp are Shakira Whight (Brunel) and Angela Barrett (UCL). Whight will want to add an outdoor BUCS gold to the two she has won indoor and Barrett will be equally determined to defend the title she won last year. On current form Sophie Thomas (Loughborough), the indoor champion, is favourite to take the Shot Put gold.
Twice silver medallist in the Discus, Hannah Evenden (Leeds Met Carnegie) is probably the favourite, but Jade Moore (Wolverhampton), who missed most of the 2011 season, will be eager to regain the title she won in 2010.
Only one woman in the Hammer Throw has gone over 60.00m – the defending champion, Scottish U20 record holder and GB U20 international Myra Perkins (Loughborough - pictured left at BUCS 2011) who looks set to take her second title. And there is an equally clear favourite in the Javlin Throw where Laura Whittingham (Loughborough), who was 4th at the 2010 Commonwealth Games, is the only one with a throw in excess of 60.00m.