Abi Oyepitan

YST Abi Oyepitan

Biography:

Abi’s talent for sprinting was first spotted by her middle school teacher, who encouraged her to join local athletics club Shaftesbury Harriers. Although talented, Abi was a late bloomer who didn’t quite reach the pinnacle of junior athletics. It wasn’t until 2001 when she qualified for her first senior international that she began to make significant steps to becoming a world class athlete. That year, not only did she break her personal best in the 100m, but she was also the fastest woman in the UK and qualified for the World Championships. During a particularly strong year, she also won the 100m at the World Student Games and a silver medal at the U23 European Championships. Abi made the European and Commonwealth 100m finals in 2002, and achieved the elusive sub-23-seconds barrier in the 200m for the first time.

However, it was in 2004 at the Olympics in Athens that she really established herself as a world class athlete. Here she reached the semi-finals in the 100m – missing the final by a single place – and went one step further in the 200m by gaining her place in the final, smashing her personal best and finishing seventh overall. A brilliant year led to a ranking of sixth in the world. After the 2004 Olympics Abi suffered huge injury setbacks and didn't compete in another major international competition for six years, undergoing three major operations during that period. After spending a gruelling six years sidelined from the sport she loved, Abi was finally able to regain her status as a world class athlete at the Commonwealth Games in 2010. She took silver in the 200m and then anchored the Team GB relay team to gold during a fantastic couple of weeks in Delhi. 

Abi’s greatest achievement was qualifying for her second Olympic Games in her home city, London. She competed in both the 100m and 200m, becoming the only sprinter to make the semi-finals for both events. Her times at the 2012 Olympics also meant she regained her status as the fastest woman in the country for both distances. Away from the track, Abi graduated from Brunel University with a BSc in Politics and has an MA in Human Rights and Social Rights from City University, London.

Sporting Achievements:

  • Olympian
  • Commonwealth Games Gold & Silver Medallist.