This year’s Commonwealth Games at the Gold Coast had some familiar faces for Oaklands College, with six former Athletics students securing an equal amount of medals in this year’s competition down under.
The College are thrilled to report on the achievements of six Athletics Alumni, who have all progressed into professional competition after their time in the Oaklands Wolves Athletics Academy, based at St Albans Campus.
Women’s 100m runner Corrine Humphreys formed part of the first cohort of students in the programmes in 2010, and ran a season’s best of 11.62 seconds in the heats before bowing out of the competition in the semi-final stage.
2014 graduate Kyle Langford secured silver for England in the world class 800m with a storming finish that saw him missing Gold by the finest of margins, still securing a personal best of 1:45:16.
2015 graduate Rueben Arthur formed part of the 4x 100m securing a Gold medal in a world leading time, a result they is just 0.1 seconds shy of Team England’s National Record. Ruben, who represented the college well attaining World Youth, World Junior and European Junior Vests stepped up to the Men’s 4x 100m team on a last minute call, running both the heats and finals to help secure team victory.
Representing Wales, 2016 graduate Olivia Breen (T38, pictured) leapt to secure the first Para athletics Gold of the 2018 Games in Long Jump. Her Commonwealth Games record of 4.86 metres proved 50cm ahead of closest competition from the Australian silver medallist. Breen also secured Bronze in the 100m, making her the first athlete to win two medals in the track and field competition at the 2018 Games.
James Arnott (T47) a graduate from last year’s programme ran outstandingly in this first race at Commonwealth level, securing the Silver medal behind Nigeria’s new star Galadima. Arnott became the only male podium sprinter for England at the Games.
Finally, T35 athlete Maria Lyle also of the 2017 cohort ran a solid race claiming the Silver medal with home favourite Isis Holt claiming Gold.
Oaklands Wolves Athletics head Coach Ryan Freckleton said: “To see six athletes selected for the Commonwealths is a great achievement, but to see them return with an equal number of medals at an International level is outstanding and I’m glad that we have played our part in equipping young athletes with the skills to continual develop after their time with us.”
The Athletics programme is one of eight overall sporting disciplines offered in the Oaklands Wolves Academy, which delivers an expert training and coaching programme in a chosen Sport alongside a chosen path of academic study. Recruiting from all over the UK and in some cases overseas, students reside at St Albans Campus to study and train, combining educational development and exploring a passion for Sport.
College Principal Zoe Hancock said: “Since its first cohort in 2010 the Athletics Academy has set the bar high in delivering sporting excellence, supported by academic success in a chosen curriculum path. We are incredibly proud of these Alumni in their success at the Games and wish them all the best in their future careers.”