Croydon Olympians are raring to go
3rd August 2012
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Having recently returned from the athletics training camp in Portugal, Croydon's medal hopes are no doubt starting to experience the pre competition adrenalin rush. 


Here in Croydon we are getting ready to cheer Lawrence Okoye as he prepares to throw for gold in the discus competition. In July 2011, Lawrence achieved the longest ever discus throw by an Englishman - 67.63m – beating his personal best by over 4m. Currently placed fourth in the world rankings I think we have reason to be optimistic about his medal chances.   


Beijing 2008 saw Martyn Rooney narrowly miss out on a medal in the 4x400m relay, as the team finished in fourth place so he will be looking to take that into a medal position this time around. Also competing in the 400m, he will be looking to beat his own personal best of 44.60secs, which is likely to be essential if he is to get into a medal winning position.  


James Dasaolu is a rookie Olympian competing in the 100m sprint and the 4x100m relay. With a personal best of 10.09 seconds, the 25 year old has a fair chance of reaching the final of the 100m but faces the daunting prospect of one Mr Usain Bolt, whose team are currently suggesting a 9.4-second range finish may be on the cards. 


James Ellington, who famously put himself up for auction on E Bay to raise the funds he needed to train is currently ranked 84th in the 200m. However, he won gold in the British Under-23 4 x 100m relay at the 2007 European Championships and qualified for the 200m at the 2011 World Championships after coming back from injury. Determination and spirit have got Ellington to this situation and those qualities are likely to see him produce a result to be proud of.


And how do you fancy contributing to the future of a potential Croydon Olympian?  


Centrale Shopping Centre is running a unique event called 'Everyone's a Winner' in support of local club AllStarz Gymnastics. From now until 30th August shoppers will have the chance to hop on to an exercise bike for one minute, with Centrale donating 60p for every minute completed and the money going towards improving sports facilities and hopefully inspiring the next generation of local Olympic champions.


So far, from the spectacular and uniquely British Opening Ceremony, to our medal tally rapidly increasing on a daily basis, these Olympic Games are shaping up to be everything and more we had ever hoped for.  And if that encourages more people to participate in sport then that can only be a good thing.


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