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Woods focused on the future

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10 September 2008




Shelly Woods has put the disappointment of Monday’s T54 5000m behind her and is focusing on preparing for the re-run of the race on Friday (September 12) with the 800m, 1500m and marathon to follow.

The Blackpool athlete finished second in an incident packed race on Monday night but after a successful protest by the Australian team following a multiple crash on the penultimate lap, the IPC decided to re-run the race.

“It’s been a crazy couple of days,” Woods admitted. “They’ve decided to re-run the race which is a bit frustrating and sad but they’ve made the decision and as an athlete all I can do is go out and race and do my best to win a medal.”

The decision was made after the medals had been handed out, which made it harder for Woods to deal with.

“The mistake they made was handing out the medals while the protests were still going on,” she said. “I knew that there were protests after the crash and when they went ahead with the medal ceremony I thought it must be OK. I had all the elation of thinking I’d won a medal at my first Paralympic race and then I was told by an official that the race would be re-run.

“I’ve had my fair share of crashes and never had a re-run. Crashes happen all the time and in wheelchair racing you know that it is always going to be tight and tactical. I think it’s the wrong decision and I’m a bit sad but there’s nothing I can do.

“All I can do is concentrate on preparing for the race on Friday and the other events after that. I’m really eager to race now – I had to wait so long for my first race and now I have to go through it all over again. Having to re-run the race on Friday has made my schedule busier but it’s nothing I can’t cope with.

“I want that medal so badly and I will do everything I can. I trust my speed and my training and I think I can medal again on Friday.”

For news updates on ParalympicsGB please visit www.paralympics.org.uk