Sophie on form again to become UK champ

WINNER: Sophie Hitchon
WINNER: Sophie Hitchon

BURNLEY’S Sophie Hitchon added to her growing collection of medals with her first senior national title on Saturday.

She won gold in the hammer at the at the Aviva National Championships and Trials in Birmingham on Saturday, and hopes to have booked her place on the plane to the World Championships in Daegu, South Korea, as a result.

Sophie, who recently turned 20, was a clear winner at the Alexander Stadium, two weeks after her bronze medal in the European Under 23 Championships in Ostrava in the Czech Republic.

After the second round, she led with a throw of 66.68m, and she went out to 67.39m - her sixth 67m-plus throw of 2011 - to win from Sarah Holt (65.63m) and Carys Parry (63.86m).

And she said: “I’m really happy with my result.

“I just wanted to come out and win, that was the main aim.

“The Under 23s was a few weeks ago, it was really close so we peaked for that.

“This week was about coming in to do a job.

“Everything this season was about peaking for Ostrava and so to come here on the back of that gives you a boost on one hand but it’s not easy when the thing you’ve been working towards all season has finished.

“And while the compettion was a bit up and down here with some good throws and some not so good throws, I’m really pleased to win the gold at the end of the day.

“I’m back in to heavy training now and obviously if I get selected for Daegu then I’ll start preparing for that.”

Sophie has twice made the B standard for the World Championships in Daegu at the end of this month, with her British record mark of 69.59m, set in Ostrava.

And she could be given the nod for a trip to the Far East at the selectors’ discretion - but she admits that even if she doesn’t make the trip, she has still had a season to remember.

“I don’t think I’ll throw again before they make the decision to be honest. I’m really pleased with how things have gone this year and if I get to go to the World Championships then it would be fantastic. “Hopefully I will get picked, but if I don’t then it’s not a disaster and I’m still progressing and confident that I will make it to the required standard for next summer.”