Search

Sophie taking a shot at Youth Olympic Games

PUBLISHED: 11:03 13 August 2010 | UPDATED: 11:56 16 September 2010

Sophie Mckinna, representing GB in Singapore in the Youth Olympics.

Sophie Mckinna, representing GB in Singapore in the Youth Olympics.

GREAT Yarmouth Athletic Club shot putter Sophie Mckinna believes she is in the best shape of her life ahead of the inaugural Youth Olympic Games which get under way in Singapore this weekend.

GREAT Yarmouth Athletic Club shot putter Sophie Mckinna believes she is in the best shape of her life ahead of the inaugural Youth Olympic Games which get under way in Singapore this weekend.

Mckinna, who will turn 16 on August 31, heads to Singapore as one of 39 Brits set to compete in the Far East having qualified at the Youth Olympic Games European trials in May.

The Lynn Grove High School student finished third in Russia with a throw of 14.66m, while she registered an impressive 15.08m to claim the English Schools' title in July.

And while Mckinna - who jetted out to Singapore with the rest of the squad on Monday - is in confident mood she admits it will be a step into the unknown when she goes head-to-head with the best shot putters in the world.

“I've never been out to the Far East before, the furthest away I've ever been is Russia for the European trials, so it's going to be completely different to what I'm used to,” she said.

“I've talked over a lot of things with my coach, in particular how to deal with the climate and how to work out there.

“We've had a specific three-week training programme in the lead-up to the games with my coach which has been hard work but hopefully it will all pay off.

“There are some strong competitors out there, the Russians and Chinese are already very strong at shot put but you always have to keep one eye over your shoulder to watch who is improving because the competition is so fierce.

“I'm sure we're going to be out there challenging for medals, but you really have to wait and see what happens on the day.

“I think I'm in the best condition I've ever been, I've been training so hard because I desperately wanted to be in Singapore and I feel totally ready.”

Mckinna, from Bradwell, has enjoyed a hugely successful season in her young career with other high-profile victories also coming at the England Under-20 Championships and Schools International.

But despite the success to date the teenager admits her first taste of an Olympic Games will top the lot.

“The Olympics are the pinnacle of any athlete's career, so if I can compete at a home Olympics at London 2012, that would just be a dream,” she added.

“We've just got to work hard and see what happens though, because 2012 is an option - but 2016 might be more realistic.

“I'll be older and more experienced for 2016 but they might take more athletes being a home Olympics and that would give me a lot more confidence and experience to go there.

“I don't think it's even hit home yet that I'm going to Singapore to represent my country - I don't think it will for a while actually, it's all a bit surreal.

“I'm really excited though. I just can't wait to just get out there, see the country and compete in my chosen sport.”

Lloyds TSB, proud partner of the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games and supporter of Team GB on their journey to the 2010 Singapore Youth Olympic Games. Visit LloydsTSB.com/London2012

Most Read

Most Read

Latest from the Great Yarmouth Mercury