European Athletics is deeply saddened to learn of the death of two teenage athletes while out training.
Lucy Pygott, who won 3000m bronze for Great Britain in the inaugural European Athletics Youth Championships in Tbilisi in July, and Stacey Burrows, tragically died after being struck by a car.
Pygott, 17, and Burrows, 16, were members of Aldershot, Farnham and District Athletic Club (AFD).
Only last Saturday, Pygott ran a final leg of 8:31.15 to lead her club to victory in the under-17 women’s race at the National Cross Country relay in Mansfield where Burrows anchored the Aldershot ‘B’ team to 13th.
Burrows is this year’s Hampshire under-17 champion over 3000m and along with being England’s under-20 champion over 3000m, Pygott made the podium in Tbilisi when she finished third in a personal best of 9:28.15.
Tributes poured in for both girls from across the sport.
Niels de Vos, chief executive of UK Athletics, said: “My heart goes out to the family and friends of those affected at this difficult time. All at UK Athletics send our deepest sympathies, this is a tragedy which will be felt across the athletics community.”
European Athletics President Svein Arne Hansen said: “Very sad to hear of untimely deaths of British runners Stacey Burrows and Lucy Pygott. I watched Lucy win European bronze this year in Tbilisi and their strong commitment to our sport will always be remembered.”
AFD’s Chris Thompson, the 2010 European 10,000m silver medallist, wrote: 'Terrible loss of two young Aldershot stars leaves me numb. My thoughts are with the family and Aldershot community.'
Pygott was due to compete in Spain on Sunday at the Cross de Atapuerca, a race where the organisers have said there will be a minute's silence in memory of the two runners.
Everyone at European Athletics passes on their condolences to both families at this sad time.