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carter and smith hail impact of weir and archer

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Jamie Carter

10 April 2013

Jamie Carter (coach: Jenni Archer) and Will Smith (Archer), who were a part of the Paralympic Potentials Camp in Loughborough last week, have praised the impact that training partner David Weir (Archer) has had on their development.

Smith, who won bronze in the T54 400m at the Paralympic World Cup last year believes that the guidance and support offered by the six-time Paralympic Games gold medallist has been invaluable in his progress.

“There’s no one better to train with than someone like Dave. He understands that we’re all individuals and we all have our own way of doing things and that’s one of the main reasons why he’s so good,” said the 17 year old.

“To be able to work with him pre-London and seeing all the work he was doing and the hours he put in was great. To then actually be there at his 5000m final and to watch him win his first gold is something I’ll never forget.”

Carter, who finished 8th in the T34 800m at the London Paralympic Games, is also full of praise for his coach Jenny Archer and the 18 year old believes he has the perfect setup to guide him on the road to Rio 2016.

“It’s a big experience training with Dave. He gives you good tips and advises you where you’re going wrong, but he tells you to do it your own way, because we’re all different.

“Jenny has also had a massive impact on me - she’s not just a coach, but a friend and a mother figure as well. She knows you as a person and as an athlete and also knows when to push you, but also when to put her arm round you when you’re struggling. Jenny understands what it takes to get the best out of you, and knows when you haven’t done your training - so there’s no escaping or cheating with.”

With the IPC World Championships in July approaching, both athletes have different aims looking ahead to Lyon and further ahead to the next Paralympic Games in Rio in 2016.

Carter said:  “My goal is to make selection for the World Championships this year and the same in 2015, but I’d also like to finish higher in the world rankings leading to Rio."

“I think the Worlds for me this year is a little bit of an outside chance, but it’s something big to work towards. For me I’m going to prioritise in bringing my times down, getting a couple of personal bests across the middle distances. The big thing for me is the Commonwealth Games in 2014 in Glasgow hopefully,” added Smith.

Last week’s camp has proved to be useful to both athletes, and believes experiencing pre-competition conditions will be vital in their development over the next few years.

Smith said: “I’ve learnt that being an athlete takes hard work. We’re in a very privileged position and I’ve been able to appreciate more what’s it’s like to be an athlete whilst being on the camp in Loughborough.

“There are not many people that get the chance to have these facilities and training sessions. So it gives me that inspiration to keep working hard to help me achieve my goals.”

Carter added: “In athletics we’re all competing individually, but to be part of a team and train as a team is massive, so it’s great to be involved in this camp.”