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Havering’s Hallam passes BUCS Championships test to strike gold for first top title

PUBLISHED: 09:00 23 February 2018

Havering's Lydia Hallam celebrates her 1500m gold at the BUCS Championships (pic Lydia Hallam)

Havering's Lydia Hallam celebrates her 1500m gold at the BUCS Championships (pic Lydia Hallam)

Archant

Havering’s Lydia Hallam led from gun to tape to win 1,500m gold at the BUCS Championships in Sheffield on Sunday.

The final year Birmingham University biology student cruised through her heat on Saturday and as the fastest in the field was a strong medal hope.

And Hallam did not disappoint with a dominant display, leading from the start and extending the gap to cross the line in 4.29.82, more than 10 metres clear, for her first major title.

Lucy Bailey was also in good form for St Mary’s University, improving her 60m hurdles best to 8.96 to place third in her heat, but missing out on the final.

Amy Baggs completed the Havering trio, placing fourth in her 400m heat for Exeter University in 67.39.

Faye Fullerton earned a late invitation to compete in the British Indoor Championships at Birmingham, after a fast 3,000m last week at Lee Valley, and fully justified the trip.

Competing against Laura Muir, Eilish McColgan and other internationals Fullerton tracked the leading group until Muir upped the pace in the last 800m.

Fullerton held on well to finish fifth in 9.13.91, only just outside her best-ever indoor 3,000m time set in the same championships in 2010 when she finished fourth.

Havering athletes contest the National Cross-Country Championships at the notoriously tough Parliament Hill Field at Hampstead Heath on Saturday.

The under-17 girls have been in great form this winter but have struggled to field their strongest team when it matters.

Jess Mitchell, 11th last year, was in superb early-season form, but has been affected by minor health issues since New Year, while Kate O’Neill goes from strength to strength and after just missing a South of England medal, won the Essex League title last week.

If these two, plus recently injured Sophie Rand and Molly Sweetman, who was eighth at the South of England, all turn out the squad could contest the medals.

The England Athletics Age Group Championships take place at Sheffield, where Toby Bishop is a strong medal contender in the under-15 boys’ 60m hurdles.

Mayi Hughes could challenge for a podium in the under-20 women’s triple jump, as hurdlers Jacob Blanc (under-15 boys), Ruby Mace, Paige Robinson (both under-15 girls), Elize Bonning (under-17 girls) and 800m runner Matthew Blacklock (under-15) are also set for indoor action.

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