Hatton eyes up an outdoor success to match
She may have a European indoor silver medal in her repertoire, but Lucy Hatton insists she is after even more prizes as she gears up for a busy summer ahead.
The 21-year-old hurdler, who won her continental medal at the European Indoor Championships in Prague last year, finished second in the 100m hurdles at the Manchester CityGames, stopping the clock in 13.15 seconds behind Tiffany Porter.
Next month she will fly to Amsterdam to make her European outdoor debut with dreams of competing at the Olympic Games in Rio later this year at the forefront of her mind.
And with plenty of support backing her all the way back home, Hatton insists this could be her year to shine.
“I would love to go to the Europeans this year,” she said. “It would be a brilliant opportunity for myself and I’d like to get a medal.
“I’ve got my indoor one but I’d like an outdoor one. It would be like ticking all the boxes at European level.
“It’s a big year this year so hopefully we can get lots of people excited for the Olympics.
“I’ve noticed myself first-hand just by going round to lots of schools that they’re just all about the Olympics and Rio.
“Children are so into it and understand it, and it’s not just running and doing the relay now, it’s field events and they are doing some hurdling as well.
“I think it’s going to be a really good year. We’ve definitely inspired the next generation and I think there’s a lot more to come.”
With less than three months to go until the action kicks off in Rio, Hatton’s bid for team selection is well under way, competing not just on the national and international stage but at university level as well.
Over 60 per cent of gold medalists since 1992 have participated in BUCS sport, with 56 members of Team GB at the London 2012 Olympics competing for Great Britain at the World University Games.
Hatton, a student at the University of Leicester, recently set a new championship record at the BUCS Championships in Bedford, taking the 100m hurdles title in 13.21 seconds, and she admits she couldn’t be where she is now without her university’s support.
“BUCS is something that I really enjoy,” she added. “I’m still studying and in my last year.
“My university have been brilliant towards me and it’s something that I really wanted to do.
“To go out there and wear my university vest is really great for me.”
British Universities & Colleges Sport (BUCS) is the national governing body for Higher Education (HE) sport in the UK, organising leagues and competitions for more than 150 institutions across 52 different sports.