Current LUCA Outdoor Series holders, UCL opened a 51 point lead at the first meet of the LUCA Outdoor Series at St Mary’s.
Conditions were mild and windy in Twickenham, South West London for the first of three LUCA Outdoor Series meets. This was the first time the series had visited St Mary’s Track, resulting in a strong turn out from the ‘blue and white army’.
But despite strong performances from the hosts, it was the blue and purple vests of UCL that racked up the most points. The reigning champions amassed 181 points in a new scoring system that sees only two athletes per club score. King’s, who came second last year, are 51 points behind on 130, with LSE on 104 and St Mary’s on 83.
If general the expectation was for St Mary’s to dominate the distance events, the reality was far more complicated. There were no blue and white vests in the 10,000 special event, leaving a comfortable victory for Imperial’s Daniel Garcia Rasines (35:10.75, ICL) with Jack Dickenson in second (36:37.57, St George’s) and Richard Sun in third. (36:57.85, QMUL). In the women’s race, UCL was the only university represented and took the top three places: Milly Ames (41:47.81, UCL), Emma Kerr (46:13.45, UCL) and Louise Belmans (46:44.99, UCL).
In the 5,000, UCL’s Gabriel Collison took 1st place in a time of 15:14.98 with St Mary’s Thomas Butler, Abdulqani Sharif, Andre Coggins and Adam Moore taking 2nd – 5th. In the women’s, it was a more familiar story of St Mary’s distance domination – Emily Moyes (17:26.23), Rebecca Howard (17:29.03) and Katie Austin (22:32.99) took the podium places.
In the sprints, LSE’s most decorated LUCA Indoor champion, and ‘MVP’, Yasmin Lakin took 1st place in the 100m, triple jump and long jump. Queen Mary’s Clyde Anucha won the men’s 100m in a time of 11.31. Three other 100m runners had their times checked to the thousandth of a second to separate there identical times of 11.49 (Harry Browning, Kings; Tolu Ojora, QMUL and Hamish Mundell, LSE). Mundell came out with 11.483 to Browning’s 11.484 and Ojora’s 11.490.
The 4X100 relays produced two fine races. Reigning men’s relay champions, King’s edged Essex and UCL to win in a time of 47.08. The women’s was a two horse race between varsity rivals KCL and UCL. King’s had won the varsity relay not 24 hours before (where UCL had won the varsity match), but were pipped to the finish line by a UCL team who clocked 56.40.
The series continues at Newham on the 9th April. A timetable and entires sheet will be released shortly.