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16 July 2008 PR 08/112

Large Loughborough contingent named in Olympic athletics squad

The British Olympic Association has named 14 of Loughborough’s finest in its first wave of competitors selected for its Team GB athletics squad.

Students Martyn Rooney and Harry Aikines-Aryeetey headline a list that includes eight Loughborough graduates and a further four University-based athletes.

The pair both achieved selection times in their respective 400m and 100m events prior to competition in Birmingham, Rooney achieving his first standard at the Loughborough International Athletics meet on campus in May.

Rooney went on to win the 400m final at the British trials last weekend in 45.31 seconds to guarantee his spot on the team. Aikines-Aryeetey finished joint fifth in a tough final in 10.26 seconds and is one of four athletes named in a four-strong relay squad.

Commonwealth 1500m champion Lisa Dobriskey, a graduate who continues to train at Loughborough, came from behind in an exciting four-lap final to win in 4:15.84. Fellow distance runner Helen Clitheroe, who also trains at the University, set a new British record in the 3000m Steeplechase ahead of graduate Barbara Parker in second. Both women have gained selection to the British team.

Loughborough-based pole vault pair Steve Lewis and Kate Dennison have also been named in the initial 48-strong squad alongside graduate Goldie Sayers in the javelin.

Graduates Nathan Douglas (Triple Jump), Jeanette Kwayke (100m), Andrew Turner (110m Hurdles) and Lee McConnell and Nicola Sanders (both 400m and 4x400m) all performed well at the weekend to secure selection, as did Loughborough-based sprinter Michael Bingham who has been included in the 4x400m relay.

More Loughborough athletes are expected to be named by the BOA this weekend when the second Team GB contingent is confirmed. Many athletes will be hoping performances at tomorrow’s LEAP meet (17 July) are enough to secure selection for Beijing.

Loughborough athletes named this week:
Loughborough students:
Harry Aikines-Aryeetey, 4x100m
Martyn Rooney, 400m  

Loughborough graduates:
Lisa Dobriskey, 1,500m
Nathan Douglas, Triple Jump
Jeanette Kwayke, 100m
Lee McConnell, 400m
Barbara Parker, 3,000m steeple chase
Nicola Sanders, 400m
Goldie Sayers, Javelin,
Andrew Turner, 110m Hurdles

Michael Bingham, 4x400m
Helen Clitheroe, 3,000m steeple chase
Kate Dennison, Pole Vault
Steve Lewis, Pole Vault


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Notes to editors:

  1. Loughborough is one of the country’s leading universities, with an international reputation for excellence in teaching and research, strong links with industry and unrivalled sporting achievement.

    It is a member of the esteemed 1994 Group – a set of internationally recognised, research intensive universities – and has a reputation for the relevance of its work. Its degree programmes are highly regarded by professional institutions and businesses, and its graduates are consistently targeted by the UK’s top recruiters.

    Loughborough is also the UK’s premier university for sport. It has perhaps the best integrated sports development environment in the world and is home to some of the country’s leading coaches, sports scientists and support staff. It also has the country’s largest concentration of world-class training facilities across a wide range of sports.

    In the 2007 National Student Survey, the University was voted fourth in the UK, with 23 out of 29 of Loughborough’s subject areas being ranked in the top ten for overall satisfaction. Loughborough is also ranked in the top fifteen of UK universities in national league tables. It was named winner of the 2006 and 2007 Times Higher award for the UK’s Best Student Experience and winner of the 2007 award for Outstanding Support for Overseas Students. In recognition of its contribution to the sector, the University has been awarded six Queen's Anniversary Prizes – an achievement bettered by no other university.

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