Paula Radcliffe set for fifth Olympic Games

 

Paula Radcliffe will become only the third British track and field athlete to be selected for five Olympics after her place in Team GB for London 2012 was confirmed today.

Radcliffe, 37, has been selected for the marathon along with Scott Overall and Mara Yamauchi to compete for Team GB in the marathon event at the London Games.

The trio are the first individuals to be selected from the sport of athletics - 11 sailors and five boxers have also been named.

Radcliffe said: "To represent your country at a home Olympics is something special and I'm over the moon to be selected for Team GB.

"I was pleased to get the qualifying time in Berlin earlier this year and my sole focus is getting in the right shape for London. I'm just fully concentrating on being fully prepared for next year."

Radcliffe joins javelin thrower Tessa Sanderson and race walker Chris Maddocks as the third British athletics competitor to be selected for five Olympics.

Andy Hunt, BOA chief executive and chef de mission of Team GB, said: "Achieving Team GB selection to five consecutive Olympic Games is a remarkable feat and Paula Radcliffe is a truly special British athlete.

"Competing at home in London brings an unprecedented platform for all Team GB athletes to demonstrate their talent and determination, and what could be more exciting than the prospect of winning an Olympic medal in front of a home crowd on the Mall?"

Overall, 28, from London, is originally a 5,000m runner and also ran the qualifying time in Berlin in September when he finished fifth.

He said: "The marathon course is really spectator friendly so I can imagine the home crowd will be absolutely fantastic and the atmosphere will be amazing."

Yamauchi, 38, from Oxford, who achieved the qualifying standard at the Yokohama Marathon last month, finished sixth at the 2008 Beijing Olympics and is the second-fastest British woman in the marathon this year behind Radcliffe.

She said: "I'm absolutely thrilled to have been selected. It's a dream come true.

"I've been working really hard for this and I'm so relieved to have been selected. It's going to be a fantastic Olympics and I'm going to give it 110 per cent from now on in order to prepare myself as best as I possibly can."

 

PA

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