Jackson looking to bounce back in style
May 23, 2013 18:32 pm
Race walker Johanna Jackson is in no hurry to get back to the track but admits she will be back better than ever as she looks to blow her London 2012 disappointment away.
The 28-year-old was Team GB’s sole female race walking representative at the Games but it ended in disappointment as she was ejected from the event having completed just over 8km for a third technical fault.
Since then Jackson, who finished 22nd at the Beijing Games, has taken a break a break from the sport – marrying her long-time partner Dave.
Jackson is the Commonwealth Games champion but with no event taking place at next year’s edition in Glasgow she instead is focussing all her attentions on the 2014 European Championships in Zurich.
This means that she will forego this summer’s World Championships, but Jackson believes that when she does return she can put her capital disappointment well and truly behind her.
"It has been the hardest DQ to take," she said. "It was such a big, once in a lifetime opportunity – home Olympics, competing in front of your own crowd – and I had high expectations of doing well in London. So it was hard to take, it took a long time to get over it.
"Even now, deep down, I'm still gutted about it. You have to move on from these things and I'm sure it will make me a better athlete for future races.
"But quite a lot has happened since London. I got married in December, so that was my focus after the Olympics. It was nice to have that distraction when the Olympics went so wrong for me.
"Finding out that Glasgow wasn't going to do my event is disappointing. I won't be able to go back and defend my title.
“I have the European Championships that year so I do have a big event to prepare for. It'll be back for the next Commonwealth games anyway so I just get to keep my title for eight years.
"I decided I was going to have a break after London. You spend four years preparing for the Olympics, it's such a big cycle and everything went into that. I just decided I wanted a break, to concentrate on my training, to get my technique right, and come back for the year after to make a bigger impact on the world stage.
"I have so much more to offer. I'm nowhere near my best yet, nowhere near my peak. I want to get under that 90-minute barrier for 20k, and get up there into the top-eight in the world and hopefully medals from there.
"Missing the World Championships this season will make me better for next season."
© Sportsbeat 2013