Hat-trick of medals for University of East London sports scholar Maya Bruney
PUBLISHED: 09:00 25 July 2017
Lauren Russell also impresses at European Athletics under-20 Championships in Grosseto
University of East London sports scholar Maya Bruney was the star of the show at the European Athletics under-20 Championships, as she raced to a hat-trick of medals for Great Britain.
The 19-year-old produced the performance of her life to win gold in the 200m before winning bronze in the 4x100m and 4x400m relays in Grosseto, Italy.
In the 200m final, Bruney ran a brilliant bend to triumph in a lifetime best time of 23.04 seconds – the fastest time in Europe this year for an under-20 athlete.
Speaking to British Athletics, Bruney said: “That was amazing. I can’t believe that I’m European champion.
“I aimed to be in the final, but after getting a PB in the heat I thought I could make the podium.
“After running all out and getting another PB in the semi, I thought my destiny was in my own hands.
“The atmosphere is unlike anything I’ve ever done before and I had no idea how close everyone was because I couldn’t hear anything.”
Having achieved her ultimate goal, the UEL graphic design student then added to her medal collection by winning bronze in both the 4x100m and 4x400m.
In the process, she helped GB equal their best ever medal haul at a European Junior Championships with 19 medals.
Fellow UEL student Lauren Russell also enjoyed a successful Championships, running a lifetime best on her way to a fifth-place finish in the 400m.
Having only been called up to squad a fortnight ago after a gold medal performance at the BAUHAUS Junior Gala, Russell followed it up with a personal best of 53.71 in her heat.
Although she narrowly missed out on a medal, that new personal best has seen Russell shave nearly three seconds off her previous best time in only a year.
She said: “I’ve been working hard with the coaches at UEL, putting everything into training and using all the strength and conditioning and physio help available.
“Since I joined they couldn’t have done more to help me succeed in my athletics career and I look forward to improving more while I’m here.”