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Shannon Hylton heads UEL sprint quartet at World Athletics Championships

Depth of sprint talent on show in London proves UEL is fastest university in UK

Rising sprint star Shannon Hylton (pictured) has praised the depth of athletics talent at the University of East London (UEL) as she gets ready to compete at the World Athletics Championships in Stratford from Aug 4-13.

Shannon, who is selected for the 200 metres and 4x100 metres relay, is part of a quartet of UEL students and former students who will be competing in sprint events at the championships – confirming UEL’s reputation as the fastest university in the UK when it comes to track and field.

Fellow UEL student Corinne Humphreys will join Shannon in the relay squad while Bianca Williams, who graduated from UEL last year, also competes in the 200 metres and relay. Completing ‘Team UEL’ will be 2015 graduate Adam Gemili, who races in the men’s 4x100 metres relay.

“It's great to be alongside fellow UEL students,” said Shannon, who won the senior UK 200 metres title earlier this summer, with Bianca taking second place. 

“The camaraderie is great. Corinne is my roommate, and we have great laughs. I think all three UEL girls being at the World Championships shows the depth of talent we have at the University and highlights how well UEL has nurtured this talent.”

Shannon, who has just completed the second year of her degree in biomedical science, has also paid tribute to the strength and conditioning support she has received at the University, which has helped overcome her the long-standing injuries issues which led to her miss out on the Rio Olympics. 

“The S&C support has been unreal, especially coming off of the back of last year when I was injured,” she said. “There's still a way to go but I have made a lot of progress this season in terms of strength and stability, and it's nice to see that the improvements are paying off.”

Shannon and Bianca will go to the start line for the heats of the 200 metres on Tuesday, 8 August, with the semi-finals on 10 August and the final the following day. The men’s and women’s 4x100 metres finals take place on Saturday, 12 August.

It will be Shannon’s first ever senior international championship, and she admits she is feeling a mixture of nervousness and excitement as she prepares to race in front of a sell-out home crowd at the Olympic stadium. 

“The crowd will be unreal,” she said. “It'll be the biggest stage I will have performed on before so I'm nervous in that sense, but I am excited to be competing against the world's best.

“I'm hoping the support and stadium atmosphere will push me on. I know that we can always count on the British crowd to be great.”