LOCAL athlete Sally Brown will jet off to a training camp in Portugal early next month to prepare for the Paralympics after her selection for the Great Britain team.
The 17-year-old will compete in the T46 100m and 200m in London.
Brown collected two bronze medals in the sprints at the recent European Championships in the Netherlands — a remarkable achievement given that she had just returned from a double stress fracture.
Brown, who carried the Olympic torch on its recent visit to Northern Ireland, feels she can benefit greatly from a spell in the Team GB training camp in Portugal ahead of the Paralympics.
“I think the team environment will bring the best out of me,” said the Ballykelly teenager, who was born with a condition which meant her left arm didn’t fully develop.
“The 200 is my best event, I’m not really a 100 runner but I’ve been lucky to do well at it,” she explained. “I’m more of a bend runner and need longer to get my speed up.
“When I get a bit older I’ll probably stop the 100 and concentrate on the 200 and 400.”
Brown continued: “I will not be in London until three days before I compete. It means I will be away from everything before I am due to run.
“Unfortunately I won’t get to the Olympic events because of the training camp,” Brown explained.
“Everything is a bit hectic at the moment with training and competition, but I’m really enjoying it.”
UKA Head Coach Peter Eriksson said: “We had a hugely successful World Championships in January 2011 where we won 38 medals and finished third in the medal table. Now, in my third full year at UKA, we’re starting to see the gradual transition to a much more professional squad with a fantastic team spirit as well as having competent performers. Overall the strength and depth of the squad has improved and that’s a huge positive.”
The London Paralympics run from August 29 until September 9.