Athletics: Radcliffe's sights on double gold in Helsinki

Although Radcliffe - who is the only previous World Championship medal winner in a British team of 52 - had always kept her options open for Helsinki, her decision to go for both events comes as a surprise, particularly after the problems she had at last month's European Cup, where she was suffering from the combined effects of a viral infection and a back injury.

But as she renews her quest for a world title in the wake of her traumatic failures at last year's Olympics, Radcliffe said she made the decision two weeks ago in the light of heartening performances while training at altitude in Font Romeu.

Given the eight-day gap between the 10,000m, which is on the opening day of the Championships, and the marathon, Radcliffe feels she can use the former as a final preparation for the latter - although she maintains she is capable of winning both. "When I go into any race I try to win," she said. "I wouldn't be putting myself on the line if I didn't think I was to be able to do it. I think I'm in shape to run well and do myself justice. My main focus is definitely the marathon, I feel the 10,000m can be my last race to bring me up well."

Radcliffe will follow the same pattern as last year by visiting her physical therapist, Ger Hartmann, for four days before flying in directly to Helsinki for the 10,000m. She will then base herself at the nearby British holding camp at Turku in the intervening week.

She shrugged off the suggestion that a difficult outing in the 10,000m, where the Ethiopian runners are viewed by most observers as being hard to beat, would harm her chances in what she maintains is her main event. "I don't really think like that," she said. "They are two different events and I don't really envisage it going wrong. Going into the marathon, if your training has been going well it gives you a feeling of solid confidence and it's hard to knock that back." The sound of a confident Radcliffe will soothe the ears of the British team selectors, who lost the services of the double Olympic champion, Kelly Holmes, to an Achilles tendon injury last week.

Radcliffe apart, the team does not look overly burdened with potential medallists, although Britain does look capable of supplying a dozen or more finalists.

Triple jumper Nathan Douglas and heptathlete Kelly Sotherton appear Britain's most likely other medallists.

But there will be added interest in the fortunes of those such as Tim Benjamin, who broke through to world class by defeating the Olympic 400m champion Jeremy Wariner on Friday, and Christian Malcolm, who has maintained impressive form over 200m. The selectors have favoured a number of young athletes who have fallen just short of A qualifying marks, such as 400m hurdlers Nicola Saunders and Rhys Williams, the European under-23 400m hurdles champion and son of former Welsh rugby union winger JJ Williams. Craig Pickering, meanwhile, newly established as European junior 100m champion, is in the sprint relay team.

Voices
voices
News
general electionThis quiz matches undecided voters with the best party for them
Arts and Entertainment
Keira Knightley and Matthew Macfadyen starred in the big screen adaptation of Austen's novel in 2005
tvStar says studios are forcing actors to get buff for period roles
News
Prince William and his wife Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge show their newly-born daughter, their second child, to the media outside the Lindo Wing at St Mary's Hospital in central London, on 2 May 2015.
news
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Ashdown Group: Trainee Consultant - Surrey/ South West London

£22000 per annum + pension,bonus,career progression: Ashdown Group: An establi...

Ashdown Group: Trainee Consultant - Surrey / South West London

£22000 per annum + pension,bonus,career progression: Ashdown Group: An establi...

Ashdown Group: Recruitment Consultant / Account Manager - Surrey / SW London

£40000 per annum + realistic targets: Ashdown Group: A thriving recruitment co...

Ashdown Group: Part-time Payroll Officer - Yorkshire - Professional Services

£25000 per annum: Ashdown Group: A successful professional services firm is lo...

Day In a Page

Fishing for votes with Nigel Farage: The Ukip leader shows how he can work an audience as he casts his line to the disaffected of Grimsby

Fishing is on Nigel Farage's mind

Ukip leader casts a line to the disaffected
Who is bombing whom in the Middle East? It's amazing they don't all hit each other

Who is bombing whom in the Middle East?

Robert Fisk untangles the countries and factions
China's influence on fashion: At the top of the game both creatively and commercially

China's influence on fashion

At the top of the game both creatively and commercially
Lord O’Donnell: Former cabinet secretary on the election and life away from the levers of power

The man known as GOD has a reputation for getting the job done

Lord O'Donnell's three principles of rule
Rainbow shades: It's all bright on the night

Rainbow shades

It's all bright on the night
'It was first time I had ever tasted chocolate. I kept a piece, and when Amsterdam was liberated, I gave it to the first Allied soldier I saw'

Bread from heaven

Dutch survivors thank RAF for World War II drop that saved millions
Britain will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power - Labour

How 'the Axe' helped Labour

UK will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power
Rare and exclusive video shows the horrific price paid by activists for challenging the rule of jihadist extremists in Syria

The price to be paid for challenging the rule of extremists

A revolution now 'consuming its own children'
Welcome to the world of Megagames

Welcome to the world of Megagames

300 players take part in Watch the Skies! board game in London
'Nymphomaniac' actress reveals what it was really like to star in one of the most explicit films ever

Charlotte Gainsbourg on 'Nymphomaniac'

Starring in one of the most explicit films ever
Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi: The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers

Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi

The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers
Vince Cable interview: Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'

Vince Cable exclusive interview

Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'
Iwan Rheon interview: Game of Thrones star returns to his Welsh roots to record debut album

Iwan Rheon is returning to his Welsh roots

Rheon is best known for his role as the Bastard of Bolton. It's gruelling playing a sadistic torturer, he tells Craig McLean, but it hasn't stopped him recording an album of Welsh psychedelia
Morne Hardenberg interview: Cameraman for BBC's upcoming show Shark on filming the ocean's most dangerous predator

It's time for my close-up

Meet the man who films great whites for a living
Increasing numbers of homeless people in America keep their mobile phones on the streets

Homeless people keep mobile phones

A homeless person with a smartphone is a common sight in the US. And that's creating a network where the 'hobo' community can share information - and fight stigma - like never before