Louise set for second chance
LOUISE Hazel narrowly missed out on a place in the British squad for European Under-23 Championships. But the March heptathlete, who is sponsored by the Cambs Times, is confident she will book a place on the plane to Hungary when she has a second shot at
LOUISE Hazel narrowly missed out on a place in the British squad for European Under-23 Championships.
But the March heptathlete, who is sponsored by the Cambs Times, is confident she will book a place on the plane to Hungary when she has a second shot at qualification in Prague in 11 days.
Hazel fell 66 points short of the 5,750 required when she competed in the Arles International in France - her first heptathlon of the season.
She said: "I had a bit of a shocker in the 200m and shot putt, but I was really pleased with the way I performed in the other five events. I was particularly pleased with my javelin throwing because the French have been giving me a bit of stick about that for a while."
The 21-year-old struggled to find her rhythm when she faced a strong headwind in the 200m, finishing in 24.98sec and had two fouls for crossing the line in the shot putt before reaching 11.7m.
She said: "I started with too much power in the 200m and when I came into the first bend the wind hit me and I panicked, and I never felt comfortable in the shot putt."
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But Hazel had a personal best 40.31m in the javelin, 2.19min in the 800m, 13.6sec in the 100m hurdles, 5.98m in the long jump and 1.67m in the high jump.
The qualifying mark has increased from the 5,500 points last season, but Hazel, whose best score last year was 5,894, is confident she will qualify.
She said: "It's disappointing that I didn't start the season as I would have liked.
"But I'm the sort of athlete who gets better with competitions and I will be a lot sharper in Prague."
Hazel will compete in Prague on June 19-20.
The European Under-23 Championships, in Hungary, start in July.