Sunday, 26 May 2013

Post-race quotes from Tirunesh Dibaba and Haile Gebrselassie after the Bupa Great Manchester Run

Tirunesh Dibaba - women's Bupa Great Manchester Run 10km winner -

“It was a good run for me, it was a great race. I wanted to start slowly and also it was windy so I didn’t want to risk going too fast too soon.

“I’m pleased with the time and I didn’t expect to run this quickly. The crowd was very good - the British fans are always very supportive.

“Today gives me good morale to go for the World Record in the future. It will give me a good boost for the World Championships, I think my injuries are over.

“I will now do the 5,000m in Eugene next week. I’m still planning to do the London marathon next year but first, I will do the 10,000m in Moscow.” 

Haile Gebrselassie - men's Bupa Great Manchester Run third place –

“Today, the others did a very good job. I tried to push and assert a position but it wasn’t easy. It’s a wonderful race and maybe I will come back here again.

“It’s fantastic to come back with another (Masters World) record so why not go for some more! The time’s not super fast but it’s good and now I’ll think about possibly doing the marathon in Berlin.”

Saturday, 25 May 2013

BT Great Manchester CityGames winners quotes

Margaret Adeoye – women’s 100m winner -

“Oh my goodness it’s awesome, the crowds are amazing. It takes me back to the Olympics with everyone supporting me. I came to entertain you guys so I hope you guys are happy. He wouldn’t be happy with my time, but my coach (Linford Christie), just told me to come out here and go for the win!

“I have to be happy with the time as I haven’t done much strength work as I strained my hamstring at the end of April so to get a win and to stay in one piece, I’m happy.”

Dawn Harper – women’s 100m hurdles winner -

“I felt a little sluggish but the weather was so good, you had to perk up. I wanted to go out and execute which I didn’t really do that well but I won so I’m happy.

“It was different to be so close to the fans and interact with them, it was weird hearing a baby cry just before the start and almost have them shake your hand.

“I’m feeling comfortable with my training – we’re right where I want to be and I’m focused so I’ll be alright.

“It will be a really great race in Moscow and Sally will bring her ‘A’ game – we’ll be pushing each other faster again. There’s a lot more I want to achieve in this event and I’m still very motivated to win.”

Jonnie Peacock – men’s IPC T44 100m winner –

“I was a bit nervous running my first race since the Paralympics – I had a good start but have a few things at the end of the race to work on.

“It wasn’t as fast as I’d hoped – I do tend to get to 60m and then crumble but I’m happy and we have a few more months before the World’s so I’ve got time to work on it.

“It was really enjoyable – my first time running in the middle of a street, everyone was relaxed and here to have a good time – they should call this the BT fun games.

“London 2012 did so much for Paralympic sport and today is a big leap for us, we need to keep it in the public eye with televised events like this.”

Allyson Felix – women’s 150m winner - 

“It’s great – we don’t often get to run in an environment like this. This is my third time here and I previously ran the 200m so 150m was a nice change on the straightaway so it didn’t feel that bad. Racing in the streets takes you back to when you’re younger.

“I came back to training late and am easing back into things to build up to the World trials.

“My focus has certainly shifted a little bit – finally winning the Olympic 200m title has really lifted my confidence and now I’m really enjoying my training and have a different motivation now.”

Greg Rutherford – men’s long jump winner –

“Competing in front of the home crowd was amazing, they really got behind us, it was like being in a home stadium and they went wild which is exactly what we need to develop athletics – a lot of people struggle to get into the stadiums and it’s a great way of getting people involved in it, being able to nip into the shops at the same time – getting a close up
and personal view is the way forward.

“I felt a bit flat today and was a bit gutted to not get over eight metres but overall it wasn’t too bad. I did four rounds really quickly which drains you a bit.

“Being here as equal athletes rather than Olympians and Paralympians is exactly the way it should be. Jonnie is an amazing athlete and ambassador for the sport.

“Going into that stadium again will be very special, it will be full of crazed British fans and if anything, there’s a chance it could be better than the Olympics because there will basically only be track and field fans there this time. It will be emotional – that night, August the 4th completely changed my life and to go back out there is a fantastic opportunity which I can’t wait out to do. I want to keep winning and with that, confidence and big distances will come.”

Perri Shakes-Drayton – women’s 200m hurdles winner –

“I’m very pleased with today – my flat’s speed’s going really well and my hurdling’s been going well in training so to win today was good.

“Eugene will be my first 400m hurdles race which I’m looking forward to. I think PB shape will come nearer to championship time but it will be nice to do a good opener.

“I would love to do really well in the World Championships this year but we all want it so I need to stay injury-free.”

Friday, 24 May 2013

Great Manchester weekend pre-event interviews - Greg, Haile and Jonnie


"I'm hugely looking forward to it - these street competitions are incredibly fun with less pressure. I'm hoping for a great performance in front of an amazing backdrop. It becomes a party atmosphere, which relaxes you as it's not hyper-competitive and brings it home a bit. I genuinely believe athletics should do this more, to make the sport more accessible and attract more excitement, they should stick it in London.

"I'm very privileged I get to do this as my job and I hope we can inspire a lot of kids tomorrow. I get the real luxury of being announced as Olympic champion so hearing that will be very special.

"I was happier than the press made out in Shanghai, very few people manage to win every single event and just because I won last August but you can't keep doing that. I wouldn't say it was a bad day as it was a stacked field and my performance bodes well for this time of the season.

"I go back to America on Tuesday and I'm really hoping Mitchell will join us over there, we're good mates and it will be great and rare to become training partners.

"As much as tomorrow will be a lot of fun, I still want to win it and for it to set me up for Prefontaine on Friday and then leading into the World's - I'm looking to win every competition and the Anniversary Games is what I'm most looking forward to, that will be very special to return to that pit and hopefully jump well there. It would be amazing to call myself the Olympic AND World champion so that's what I'm working to for sure."

“It’ll be a good race and I’m looking forward to it. My training’s very good, it has been for the last few months and I like Manchester – I have good memories of racing here. The people here will expect a win from me and that is my target. This race is amazing, it has a big number of competitors and I have a lot of support here. I’m just thinking about the weather, though - I hope it is not going to be hard for me. The only way to survive in this life is running, a lot more people should have running in their life.  People need to sweat more!”

“It’s my first outing since the Games so I’m excited and a little bit nervous as I’m not too sure what kind of shape I’m in. You get fed up of training and need to see where you’re at so I’m looking forward to getting out there.

"This is the first time Paralympic events are included in this event so that’s a great step forward. I’ve competed in Manchester before for the BT Paralympic Cup so I enjoy competing here. We’re expecting a 20,000 crowd so it’s going to be loud.

"I’m going to be running on a new blade which will really smooth out my running so we’ll see how that goes tomorrow. I’m not expecting to be too fast tomorrow but obviously not a slow time either. I’m looking forward to the Anniversary Games and then the World Champs.

"I’m especially looking forward to returning to the Olympic stadium as I don’t feel like I made the most of that fast track – London 2012 was amazing and no-one expected the reception we got at the Paralympics and that has played a huge part in how we are perceived so I’m happy we’re getting more recognition now. I’ve managed to stay out of the shadows a bit, though so life’s still pretty normal. It’s progressing forward but of course after the Games, our profile goes down.”