Elise nets national medal double

Athletics talent Elise Lovell capped an outstanding summer by winning a pair of medals at a national competition.

Elise Lovell won long jump gold and hurdles silver in Bedford
Elise Lovell won long jump gold and hurdles silver in Bedford

The Hastings Athletic Club talent won gold in the women’s long jump and silver in the women’s 100m hurdles at the England Athletics Senior AAA Championships.

The results are all the more impressive when you consider that Lovell is a heptathlete competing against athletes who specialise in these disciplines.

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Lovell admitted that she travelled to Bedford International Stadium last weekend with no expectations and a ‘see what happens’ type of attitude.

The European Cup Combined Events Super League event in France a few weeks previously - when Lovell scored a personal best 5,255 points in the women’s heptathlon on her Great Britain debut - had taken a lot out of her and she had merely been ticking over with her training since.

But the 23-year-old from Hastings went over six metres in the long jump for the first time - and became the first woman from Sussex to do so in the process - with a leap of 6.07m, some 22 centimetres clear of her nearest rival.

Almost straight after the long jump final, Lovell headed onto the track for the hurdles and again exceeded all expectations by coming second with another new personal best of 13.86.

The Bedford venue seems to be something of a happy hunting ground for Lovell because it was there that she won the senior women’s heptathlon at the England Athletics Combined Events Championships in May.

“At the start of the season I never expected anything like this,” said one-time Helenswood Academy pupil Lovell, who is coached by Steve King. “It’s crazy.”

Lovell is now focusing on clinching the Southern Athletics League Division Three South West title with Hastings AC. Victory in the final match of the season on Saturday August 15 would be enough to be crowned champions.

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