Hammer starlet set for England

editorial image

A hammer thrower with rich potential has been selected to represent her country this weekend.

Louisa James will throw for England with British number one British Sophie Hitchon at a senior home international in Bedford.

From the start of this season, James has been the number one ranked junior in Great Britain. On this form the 18-year-old was selected to compete for GB Juniors in the Loughborough International against senior athletes from England and Scotland on May 19.

Although the youngest competitor in the event, James set a then personal best of 59.62m, which also qualified her for the European Junior Championships in Rieti, Italy, from July 18-21.

Continuing her fine early season form, James went further still at the following weekend’s Sussex County Championships. A new PB of 60.83m not only broke her own competition record by more than three metres, but it was also the first time a Sussex woman has thrown over 60 metres.

James is a pupil at Sussex Coast College in Hastings and is now representing the Shaftesbury Barnet club. Her preparations for the summer have been helped by Mark Beaumont, of Claremont School, allowing her to use its outdoor facilities during the winter months.

James previously hit the headlines back in 2011 when she struck gold at the IAAF World Youth Championships and Commonwealth Youth Games.

Members of James’s former club, Hastings AC, won six gold, six silver and five bronze medals between them at the aforementioned Sussex Championships in Crawley. Some excellent displays produced 19 personal bests and four club records.

Top performances came from the under-17s. Katie Garland won three gold medals in the 80m hurdles (with a club record of 12.0s), long jump (5.22m) and high jump (1.60m). She also came fourth in the 200m in 26.9s and anchored the 4x100m relay squad with Robyn Mackay, Rebecca Haggar and Mia Divito to take silver in a new club record time of 52.0s.

Sophie Markwick won double gold with 4:53.0 in the 1,500m and a club record 10:26.9 in the 3,000m. The final gold went to Grace Baker in the under-20 3,000m in a time of 10:25.8.

See today’s Hastings Observer for the full article.