After finishing third in the Combined section of the World Climbing Championships in Tokyo on Tuesday, Shauna Coxsey believes she is perfectly placed to win her sport’s first ever Olympic gold medal at next summer’s games in Japan.
“I think it’s entirely possible I can win it,” she said after her bronze medal climbs. “I’ve proven I can be in top spot in qualification, then in the final I got a personal best in the speed discipline and broke my own British record. I know if I train really well and I stay injury free then that gold medal is within my reach.”
It was, she added, the first time she had ever stated her belief that she could do it. Until now, her focus had been entirely on qualification; she had not allowed herself the luxury of thinking about what might happen in Tokyo.
But now, following her performances in the World Championships – which also included winning bronze in the bouldering event –she has guaranteed that she will be one of the 20 athletes competing in the inaugural Olympic climbing event, and is allowing herself to envisage topping the podium.
“Because I qualified for the final in top position, to know I can be first place makes a huge difference psychologically – especially as I’m certain I can get faster, fitter, stronger,” she said.
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