Balogan aims for Olympics

University of East London (UEL) student, Jeffrey Lawal Balogan has set his sights on success at the 2012 Olympics after setting the fastest time by a European this year in Switzerland. Balogan, 22, set a time of 20.38 in the 200m and has followed that w

University of East London (UEL) student, Jeffrey Lawal Balogan has set his sights on success at the 2012 Olympics after setting the fastest time by a European this year in Switzerland.

Balogan, 22, set a time of 20.38 in the 200m and has followed that with further success this year.

He placed first in the B 200m final at the Aviva London Grand Prix at Crystal Palace in July, beating the likes of Christian Malcolm and Leon Baptiste.

The student, in his final year studying marketing, is now aiming to make a hit when the Olympics come to London in 2012.


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He said: "At the moment I'm number one in the UK and Europe and every time I pass the Olympic stadium in Stratford to go to training, I keep telling myself that's where I want to be.

"I'm also busy balancing my studying with practicing six days a week.

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"Even though I live in south London, I train in Newham and I'd like to think I'm a role model for young people around the country.

"Some youngsters don't have direction and I hope I can inspire them to join a club or realise that their talent can be spotted, like mine was."

Balogan was spotted three years ago by a member of Kent Athletics Club as he sprinted through Bromley town centre when he was late for a seminar and he has gone from strength to strength since then.

Neville Punchard, Dean of the School of Health and Bioscience at UEL said: "Jeffrey's story is the stuff of fairy tales and an amazing one.

"We are delighted that he has achieved so much in such little time and is continuing to inspire everyone around him.

"We wish him every success in completing his degree, running at World Championships and setting out for team GB at the Olympics in the future.

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