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St Mary's Athlete Selected for Team GB at Rio 2016


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Alumna and current athlete at St Mary’s University, Twickenham Beth Potter has confirmed her selection to run the Women’s 10,000m at the Rio 2016 Olympics. Beth, who is coached by Mick Woods as an athlete in the Endurance Performance and Coaching Centre (EPACC) and studied for her PGCE at St Mary’s, secured her selection finishing second at the British Athletics 10,000m Olympic trial. Beth had already achieved an Olympic qualification time, having achieved a time of 32:03.45 at the Stanford Invitational competition in California, USA, finishing third in the race. Speaking to British Athletics Beth said, “I was nervous over those last couple of laps; I didn’t want to look behind me as I was just focusing on getting that second spot. I felt good (at the front early on) and was confident to hold that position at that stage.” Director of Sport St Mary’s Andrew Reid-Smith said, “This is the second time in matter of weeks that Beth has run the Olympic qualifying time, she knew what was needed and performed brilliantly to book her spot at the Rio Games.” Beth is now the third Athlete from St Mary’s to achieve Olympic qualification alongside Team GB’s Joshua Buatsi, Light-Heavyweight Boxing, and Team Canada’s Leonora MacKinnon, Women’s Epee Fencing. St Mary’s has a proud history of Olympic and Paralympic success. The University’s sporting alumni include Mo Farah, the London 2012 double gold medallist and GB’s best ever distance runner, Rebecca Romero, an Olympic medallist in two different sports rowing and cycling making her one of GB’s greatest ever Olympians, and Moe Sbihi, London 2012 Bronze Medallist and World Champion Rower. Dave Weir, winner of four gold medals at the London Paralympics, trains at St Mary’s using the world-class facilities and support services. As part of St Mary’s contribution to the London Games the University supported athletes from ten different nations and provided Pre Games Training Camps for China, South Africa, Japan and Ireland.  Based on London 2012 medals won St Mary’s finished sixth, the highest placed London institution, in Podium’s league table for universities. Lord Coe, the chairman of the London Organising Committee for the Olympic Games and President of the IAAF, opened St Mary’s latest sports facilities.  International athletes competing at the Games used these facilities, which continue to provide a sporting legacy for students, staff and local community alike.  
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