Loughborough win 34 medals at BUCS Indoor Athletics Championships

A group shot of Loughborough athletics team at bucs

Loughborough athletes had one of their best-ever BUCS performances at the 2024 BUCS Indoor Championships, winning 34 medals and setting three Championship Best Performances at the Sheffield EIS Arena between the 23rd and 25th February.

With at least one Loughborough athlete qualifying for the final of every event in both track and field, Loughborough put out one of its strongest teams ever at the BUCS indoor athletics Championships. Friday, typically the day of the sprinting superstars, saw Loughborough’s Abigail Pawlett win the 60m hurdles in a new Championship Best of 8.17 seconds, the perfect preparation for the World Indoor Championships, where she will compete in the pentathlon in Glasgow on the 1st March. In the men’s hurdles event, Tom Wilcock finished in a fine silver medal position behind GB&NI International Daniel Goriola, setting a personal best of 7.79 in the process.

Tokyo Paralympic 100m Champion Thomas Young showed he is in excellent form by winning the men’s ambulant 60m in a time of 7.19, followed home in silver by postgraduate Joel Mattacks in a season’s best 7.31. In the women’s ambulant event, India Oates defied illness to take a silver medal in a season’s best 10.15, just outside her lifetime best of 10.11.

The one field final of the day saw Loughborough win gold and silver in the pole vault as Owen Heard came agonisingly close to the Championship Best Performance of 5.43 held by Scott Simpson, the former coach of Owen’s coach (Kate Rooney). Clearing 5.33m, the UK Champion became the BUCS Champion, and he was joined on the podium by Loughborough’s Mark Mellor who cleared 4.73m for silver.

Saturday was all about track qualification, with athletes navigating through heats and semi finals. The one and only final of the day featured another gold and silver for Loughborough. It was delight for Zac Davies and Dillon Claydon who after qualifying with ease earlier in the day, both threw lifetime bests of 16.24m and 16.13m respectively in the men’s shot final to finish in first and second place.

Where Saturday was for qualifying, Sunday was all about the finals. Loughborough won a further eleven golds, eight silvers and six bronzes to win the men’s and women’s overall titles by almost triple the points of their nearest competitor. Two more championship best performances were achieved by Emily Newnham in the 400m (53.06) and Alex Millard in the 3000m (9:06.33). While Millard broke the long standing best set by Lisa Dobriskey in 2005, Newnham proved that she performs best at BUCS, breaking her own Championship best and indoor PB from 2023, and taking over half a second from her season’s best.

Further golds came from first year student and late replacement Alex Houchin in the men’s 400m, fellow first years Indie King and Adam Rutter in the women’s 800m and men’s ambulant shot, and Paralympic Champion Ntando Mahlangu in the men’s ambulant long jump. Archie Yeo and Lily Hulland backed up their previous weekend’s UK Championships wins with gold in the triple jump, and Lydia Church won her 5th BUCS gold medal of her career. There was also double success for the men’s and women’s 4 x 200m relay teams with Christian Tansey, Evan Blackman, Bailey Swift and Harry Taylor storming to a time of 1:26.41, the third fastest time in Loughborough’s club history. The women’s team went one step further, with Harita Bhadra, Gwendoline Datey, Mia Smith and Emily Newnham setting a new club record of 1:38.21 to take the win by almost a second and a half from Birmingham.

Silver medals were won by Henry Jonas in the 800m, Sophie Ashurst in the pole vault, Molly Palmer and Archie Yeo in the long jump, and Joel Mattacks in the ambulant shot. As well as silvers, there were PBs for Jordan Aki-Sawyerr in the triple jump, Harry Taylor in the 200m and Abi Pawlett in the shot.

And finally, bronze medals were won by Ruby Jerges in the long jump, Sam Danson in the long jump, David Race in the 800m, Freya Howgate and Sean Delaney in the ambulant shot, and Poppy Malik in the 200m, running a huge lifetime best of 23.84.

Director of Athletics at Loughborough, Femi Akinsanya, commented, “This was a hugely successful weekend for Loughborough. In 2022 we achieved 27 medals and didn’t think it could get any better, and now the students have just won 34. I’m incredibly proud of their attitudes, professionalism and performances throughout the whole indoor season. It was also fantastic to see so many of our support staff and practitioners from Loughborough supporting the team up in Sheffield, as it really is a massive team effort to get the athletes here and achieving their goals”.

Other Final Results:

60m –Owaab Barrow, 5th, Harita Bhadra, 8th

200m – Jazmine Moss, 5th

400m – Jess Astill, 5th

800m – Charlotte Young, 4th

1500m – Jack Dickson, 5th, Ty Brockley-Langford, 4th, Keira Brady-Jones, 6th

3000m – Rowan Miell-Ingram, 4th

60mH – Yasmin Uwakwe, 5th

Ambulant 60m – Freya Howgate 4th, Ethan Kirby 5th

High Jump – Ollie Adnitt, 9th, Bryony Bovell, 6th, Gabby Thoburn, 7th

Ambulant long jump – Joel Mattacks, 4th, Ethan Kirby 5th

Full Results: Roster Athletics · BUCS Indoor Championships 2024