IPC EUROPEAN CHAMPIONSHIPS AUGUST 2018
The IPC European Championships took place in Berlin last month. I had mixed emotions going to the event as we had decided that I shouldn't take part in the long jump because of the impact jumping has had on my knee. Since returning from the Commonwealth Games in April I have been rehabbing tendonopathy in my right knee and each time I have jumped, even lightly, has aggravated my knee. I have really missed not long jump training as I really enjoy it.
I had really hoped that I may have been able to add European Champion to my World and Commonwealth titles but sadly it wasn't to be. I really didn't;t want to damage my knee further by jumping at the championships so my coach and I decided I would just enter the 100m.
Because of my injury I also haven't done as much competition sprint training as I would like to have and I knew the field was going to be really strong. My race was one of the final events of the championships so I spent the 9 days leading up to seeing my teammates produce some outstanding results and thinking to myself that I desperately wanted to medal. My parents reminded me that I hadn't been fully training and that I had also been unwell so not to put too much pressure on myself, but I stayed determined! I kept imagining the feeling of being on the podium and convinced myself that I could do it.
The day of my 100m dawned and I felt very nervous but positive. The weather wasn't the best but for us Brits, running in the wet and cold isn't really a big deal. I was in lane 5 which was pretty good as I was in between my main rivals, Ave of Germany and Eckler of Hungary. The race for second and third was always going to be between the three of us. I had a reasonable start but was aware of Ave coming up quickly on my inside and overtaking me and heckler doing the same on my outside. I pushed really hard in the last 15 metres and managed to take third place from Eckler and beat her by three hundredths of a second. Even though it was a bronze medal to me it felt like a gold medal and I was absolutely delighted - it really meant a huge amount to me.
I am now back from Germany and am enjoying 6 weeks off training. It has been really lovely being at home and catching up with friends and family. Last weekend I went to the wedding of my relay team mate from 2012, Bethany Woodward to Welsh Commonwealth Games javelin thrower, Lee Doran. It was the most beautiful day and I felt so privileged to be able to share the day with them. It was six years ago this week that we won our bronze medal so it was very special to be part of the day.
I am now in America for a couple of weeks for a holiday in New York, Washington and South Carolina which I am really excited about.