Three Clonliffe athletes had the opportunity over the weekend to sample the atmosphere of the London Olympics as the British Universities Athletics Championships took place in the Olympic stadium over the course of the past two days. The event was also availed of by the organisers as one of the dry runs for the Olympics themselves resulting in an estimated crowd of 40,000 being in attendance.
Sprinter Leah Moore was in action in the sprints and relay. In the 100m heats she qualified comfortably running 12.35 on Friday. In Saturday’s semi-final she ran 12.44, however, unfortunately failed to qualify although she was the 9th fastest of the 24 semi-finalists. In the relay Leah anchored Brunell to victory in the 4 x 100 heats and on Monday helped his University to relay bronze, despite having to replace a starting member of the team who withdrew as a result of the cold, temperatures in the stadium had drpooed to a mere 7 degrees. On Sunday Leah was in action in the 200m finishing 2nd in heat six in 25.22 advancing to the semi-finals where later that day she qualified for the final running 25.00 and in Monday’s final Leah placed 6thrunning a time of 25.10. Post event the Clonliffe girl and Brunel Captain expressed herself a little disappointed with her 100 and 200 races , however overall was satisfield with her weekend`s work commenting: “The Brunel team that I put together came second in the overall team rankings for the championships which is a massive achievement for me as I didn’t get very much help holding the team together throughout the champs while trying to compete in 7 races from Friday to Monday. “
Two of our distance athletes were in action in Sunday’s 10,000m final where both were inspired by the Olympic stadium. None more so than Sarah McCormack who was a superb winner in a time of 34:31.52, a PB, to win the British Universities by a margin of some 11 seconds. An excellent run also in this race by Louise Hill-Stirling, still a junior, who also ran a PB in finishing 16th place of 38:23.98.