Athletics - Bleasdale targets UK Championship hat-trick

British pole vaulter Holly Bleasdale wants to lay down an early marker to her international rivals as she bids for a hat-trick of wins at the European Indoor Trials & UK Championships.

The 21-year-old, who finished sixth on her Olympic debut at London 2012, has made an encouraging start to 2013, clearing 4.60m last weekend at the Glasgow International Match.

That came two weeks after she recorded a leap of 4.62m in France with both comfortably inside the qualifying height of 4.50m for March’s European Indoor Championships

And, announcing she will be appearing at the trials in February, the British record holder is confident she can go even higher with victory automatically securing her a place.

Last year Bleasdale enjoyed a successful indoor season, claiming world bronze, a British record of 4.87m in France and clearing 4.70m at the trials Sheffield.

And, as that jump secured her a second successive UK title, the now Arizona-based pole vaulter is bidding to win yet again ahead of trip to Gothenburg.

"I always enjoy coming to Sheffield to compete in the trials, and I'm really looking forward to the opportunity of making it three wins in a row," said Bleasdale.

"Hopefully I can produce a good performance and confirm my place for the European Indoor Championships in March.

"Clearing 4.60m at the Glasgow International Match was a good start to the season but I know I can go much higher so hopefully I'll be able to do that in Sheffield.

"2013 is a big year for me so it's important that I'm consistent and perform well in all my competitions. I want to continue progressing and put on a good show for the Sheffield crowd."