“I’m terrified, excited and nervous all at the same time. This weekend in Manchester will be my first competition since the London Paralympics and because I haven’t competed at all in the domestic season it is a little scary that my first event back will be an international competition that includes a lot of my rivals from London and for Lyon.”
Paralympic champion Kelly Cartwright will make her competitive return at the Great CityGames this weekend after a long stint away from athletics due to an injury that followed her double-medal success at the London Paralympic Games.
Competing in the long jump F42/44 for leg amputees, Cartwright’s bold assault on the runway sees the 24-year-old battle it out with many of the girls she stole gold from in the Paralympic stadium last September.
“I’m terrified, excited and nervous all at the same time," she said.
"This weekend in Manchester will be my first competition since the London Paralympics and because I haven’t competed at all in the domestic season it is a little scary that my first event back will be an international competition that includes a lot of my rivals from London and for Lyon."
“I want to get back on the plane after this event with an Athletics Australia A-Qualifier for the IPC Worlds under my belt. That’s my aim and hopefully the information we have from my training will translate into something that builds my confidence on return from surgery."
Undergoing surgery on her left ankle late last year, the dual world champion Cartwright was forced to reconsider her preparation plans for the IPC Athletics World Championships and now sees a tough block of training just around the corner.
“It has been a very up and down ride since the Games last year," she said.
"I’ve had a big operation that has set me back from where I wanted to be in my preparation for the IPC World Championships but my goal from here is to keep improving on my training and I hope the results will come. I just want to go to Lyon knowing that I can perform at a standard that will help the team.
“I was actually lucky enough to be invited to compete at the Golden Gala in Rome as part of the IAAF Diamond League and that would have been great but between my coach and I we thought that six weeks of hard work here at home would be a better way to get ready for later in the year. The training period will be the hardest I’ve done in a long time, it’s actually a bit daunting, but track and speed work is what I need to perform well at the Worlds.”
The BT Great CityGames will take place on 25 May on an IAAF certified, purpose built track and pop-up athletics arena in Manchester's city centre, ahead of the IPC Athletics World Championships in Lyon, France from 19-28 July.