Search

University of East London student Shannon Hylton hopes to reach 2016 Rio Olympics

PUBLISHED: 15:30 07 June 2016

University of East London student Shannon Hylton is hoping to make it to the 2016 Rio Olympics (pic: UEL).

University of East London student Shannon Hylton is hoping to make it to the 2016 Rio Olympics (pic: UEL).

Archant

19-year-old keen to impress in trials at Birmingham towards the end of June after winning Loughborough International last month

University of East London student Shannon Hylton has impressed in the 200m recently (pic: UEL).University of East London student Shannon Hylton has impressed in the 200m recently (pic: UEL).

Shannon Hylton is hoping age will be no barrier to fulfilling her dream of competing in Rio this summer as she prepares for the all-important UK Olympic trials later this month.

The University of East London sports scholar is one of the country’s most promising sprint prospects after a breakthrough 2015 season that saw her win a 200 metres silver medal at the European Junior Championships and smash the 23-second barrier – a benchmark of world-class sprinting.

University of East London student Shannon Hylton has just completed her first year of a Biomedical Science degree (pic: UEL).University of East London student Shannon Hylton has just completed her first year of a Biomedical Science degree (pic: UEL).

But, at the age of just 19, she is the youngest of the current crop of female British sprinters with a realistic prospect of earning Olympic selection and she faces fierce competition for a place in Rio in both her specialist 200m event and the 4x100m relay.

Realistically, she is unlikely to hit top speed until the Tokyo Olympics in 2020 but Hylton has no intention of waiting around for another four years when she competes at the Rio trials in Birmingham from June 24-26.

She said: “I obviously want to be at my peak in 2020, but I would really love to make the 200m this summer. Just because you’re young, it doesn’t mean you shouldn’t aspire to be there.

“Age shouldn’t be a barrier. You have 16-year-olds breaking 11 seconds over 100m and running mid-22 seconds over 200m, so if everything comes together at trials I’d love to make the Games this year.”

Hylton, who has just completed the first year of her Biomedical Science degree, opened her season with a 200m victory at the Loughborough International last month.

However, she was forced to miss the earlier British Universities and Colleges Sport (BUCS) Championships after problems with her hip over the winter meant she had to delay the start of her outdoor campaign.

The challenge she faces at the trials is that the women’s 200 metres is currently one of the most hotly contested events in British athletics, with six or more athletes chasing the three available spots.

Among them is fellow UEL student Bianca Williams, the double Commonwealth bronze medallist who has been ranked No 2 in the UK for the past two years.

“This year the women’s 200m is just stacked,” said Hylton. “Everyone is raising their game this year in both the 100 and 200m, so I’ve got a lot to compete against.”

The 19-year-old is also aiming to be selected for the 4x100m relay squad, but would dearly love to compete in the 200 against her heroine, Allyson Felix.

The American, who won three golds at the London 2012 Olympics, has said Rio will be her last Games.

“Allyson Felix is one my greatest idols and this is going to be her last Olympics so it would be such an amazing experience to race against her and be in that moment,” said Hylton

“To make it to Rio would mean the world, honestly. I can’t even describe what the feeling must be like to be an Olympian.”

With fellow UEL students Aimee Willmott and Lawrence Okolie having already booked their places at Rio in swimming and boxing respectively, Hylton is hoping there will be more for the University to celebrate by the end of the month.

She added: “It would be great to have a UEL squad in Rio. I saw that Aimee and Lawrence have done really well to qualify already and hopefully Bianca and I will qualify, too. That would be really cool.”


If you value what this story gives you, please consider supporting the East London Advertiser. Click the link in the yellow box below for details.

Related articles

Latest East London Sports News

11 minutes ago

Leyton Orient have announced their retained list with the League Two season coming to an end, despite final decisions on league positions next week.

17:45

England’s three-Test series against the West Indies will go ahead next month subject to government clearance, the England and Wales Cricket Board has confirmed.

16:00

West Ham United Women are teaming up with domestic abuse charities after a sharp rise in incidents during the coronavirus pandemic.

15:00

Tottenham Hotspur youngster George Marsh feels he is only just getting started after a positive first campaign in senior football on loan at Leyton Orient.

12:00

Bookmakers issued a mixed report as British racing returned from a 76-day absence, with most firms describing trade as brisk.

10:00

A group of leading British sporting identities have teamed up to help boost prostate cancer research.

09:00

Tottenham Hotspur striker Harry Kane admits that he is surprised at how wide the sales of the Leyton Orient shirt he sponsors have spread, but is delighted for the club and the charities involved.

07:25

County cricket’s reduced pay deal has been extended to the end of July, as players continue to wait for their season to resume.

PROMOTED CONTENT

Schools across the country have been preparing for some of their pupils to return to the classroom. Here is how one group of schools has been getting ready to make sure pupils can be taught safely and get on with lessons.

The Government is encouraging people to stay alert as many take their first steps back to their workplace.

The Government has announced an unprecedented package of support to protect jobs and support business across the UK during the coronavirus outbreak.

Most read sport

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the
Docklands and East London Advertiser
e-edition today

Subscribe

Education and Training

cover

Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now

Most Read

Latest from the East London Advertiser