By Paula Planelles
Christian Malcolm, one of Britain’s top male sprinters, is getting ready for the London 2012 Olympic Games. Despite being previously close to retiring after the close of last years competitions, the 200m sprinter told The London Daily News that he still felt in "very good shape". At the moment, he works hard to achieve his next aim: winning gold medal at the Olympics. Self-confidence, hard work and persistence are his secrets to be the first to reach the finishing line.
Christian Malcolm’s passion for sports started when he was just a child, when he went to run thanks to her mother’s insistence. “When I was a kid I used to go training with my mum. We didn’t have a car, so we walked one hour to go and one hour to go back”, he told The London Daily News. His mother’s support and his effort would bear fruits soon, as at the age of 19 Christian won the double over 100m and 200m at the World Junior Championships.
However, his contact with sports did not begin running. Christian Malcolm made his debut as a football player, having trials with QPR, among others. However, his school coach encouraged him to change his career. “I was always fast. I was always the fastest in my school, in my class, in my team and my school teacher said to me that I could be one of the best sprinters in the world. Then I thought: ‘let’s see what happens’ ”, Christian explains.
There has been so much work from then. In 1998, Christian claimed Silver at the Commonwealth Games, in a time of 20.29. Only two years later, the well-known athlete would win the gold medal at the European Indoor Championships and would take Gold at the European Cup in the 200m race.
Christian Malcolm’s expectations were big, which led him to join the Sydney Olympic Games at the age of 21, where he finished 5th, recording a personal best with 20.19 in the second round and in the semi-finals.
However, Christian also suffered a defeat in the 2004 Athens Olympic Games, as he was hospitalized with kidney problems just a few days before the competition. “I think the biggest disappointment for me would be after the Olympics in 2004. I was in hospital for ten days before the event. So I was not able to perform my best”.
But the Welsh athlete would change his luck in the 2005 and 2007 World Championships, when he won Bronze medals in the 4x100m relay. This encouraged him to join the 2008 Beijing Olympics, the year when Usain Bolt claimed Gold. Christian Malcolm ran next to the Jamaican in the final. He did not win but he performed a fantastic race, finishing 5th and becoming highest British sprinter at the competition.
Two years of hard training were useful for the athlete, who in 2010 won Silver at the European Championships and Bronze at the Commonwealth Games.
Hard work for the 2012 London Olympic Games
The Games are getting closer and Christian Malcolm knows it. He trains hard six days a week to beat his record. “From October to now we do a lot of strength activities to keep the body condition ready. In the next 6 or 8 weeks, we’ll do a lot of technical work; that will be until the end of the season”, he told The London Daily News.
Completely focused on the Olympics, Christian affirmed that he would do his best. “I always believe in myself, I believe in what I can do. I try to learn more in how my body works. I try to do my best and compete against the best”, he stated.
The athlete also thinks about his future. In spite of confessing having considered the option to finish his career as a sprinter, now Christian does not think about an immediate end. “For the last couple of years I have been saying “in 2012 I’m going to retire”, but 2012 has come now and I feel in very good shape. I don’t feel that I’m ready to retire”.
A great performance for the Games is what he expects. Will he achieve it? The 2012 London Olympics will give us the answer.
Christian Malcolm is an ambassador for Links of London who are the official jewellery designers for London 2012. The Team GB Band is available in Links of London stores and at www.linksoflondon.com