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Sport

Aimee powers to place at world championships

UEL students

UEL’s star swimmer, Aimee Willmott, has gold in her sights again after qualifying for this summer’s World Swimming Championships in Russia.

The 21-year-old, already one of Britain’s top swimmers with two Commonwealth and two European medals, will compete in the 400m individual medley in Kazan in August.

She secured her place by swimming a time of 4.33.66 at the GB trials which were held at the London Aquatics Centre in the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park.

“I’m really proud of Aimee” said Lisa Bates, head coach of the London Aquatics Centre Performance Programme (LACPP). “If she does well at the World Championships it establishes her in a great position amongst the world’s best competitors one year out from Rio.”

Aimee had to get a specific qualifying time which was set on last year’s rankings. The time was the sixth fastest time in the world last year.

“I’m really excited to have qualified,” said Aimee. “I look forward to competing as I get one step closer to Rio.”

David Cosford, Director of Sport at UEL, said Aimee did remarkably well to balance the demands of studying for a degree at UEL, whilst being a world class athlete.

“At UEL we pride ourselves on supporting our students who participate in high performance sport, and this is a great example of what can be achieved,” said Mr Cosford.  “We are committed to ensuring that the LACCP based at the London Aquatics Centre, becomes one of the most prestigious swimming programmes in the UK. We hope many more young and talented swimmers can emerge over the next decade who can reach the levels of performance that Aimee has achieved.”

In February, Aimee won three gold medals at the BUCS championships, spearheading UEL’s best-ever medal haul. David Cosford said she was an excellent role model for aspiring swimmers.

“We are very fortunate and grateful that she is associated with UEL and the LACPP,” he said.

Aimee’s UEL swim teammate, Michael Gunning, also did well in the water, reaching the final of the 200m butterfly, where he agonisingly missed out on a bronze medal by less than half a second, finishing in a time of 1:59:53.  He also swam a Personal Best, finishing tenth in the 400m freestyle in a time of 3.55. .

For more details on the high performance sport programme at UEL and the LAC contact headcoach@lacpp.co.uk or visit www.lacpp.co.uk.

Notes to Editors

The University of East London (UEL) is a global learning community with students from over 120 countries world-wide. Our vision is to achieve recognition, both nationally and internationally, as a successful and inclusive regional university proud of its diversity, committed to new modes of learning which focus on students and enhance their employability, and renowned for our contribution to social, cultural and economic development, especially through our research and scholarship. We have a strong track-record in widening participation and working with industry.