KIMBERLEY REED is already picturing herself on the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games podium – but admits she must rediscover her top form this summer first.
Hammer throw specialist Reed, 17, has suffered from a stuttering start to the season after enjoying her best-ever campaign last year, in which she made the 2011 World Youth Championships final in Lille – finishing tenth – following a Commonwealth Youth Games silver.
But the Edinburgh AC athlete is now targeting the Under-18 Scottish Championships at Grangemouth Stadium in August as a springboard to Glasgow success.
“I think it will be a platform for the Commonwealth Games. I want to get everything perfect on the day, which will help me in the long run,” said Reed, who has taken a clean sweep of every British under-17 and 18 title.
“I picture myself standing on the podium receiving a medal in my home town in two years’ time, in front of my own people cheering me on. That gives me plenty of motivation.
“It will be a great experience and I don’t think the pressure will affect me because I cope well under pressure. I don’t think I will crumble.
“I have had a slow start to the season. I have had a few things going on which have affected things.
“I have not trained as much but I am gradually starting to turn things around and I am confident I will get back on track to where I was before.
“I am working hard on my technique and I am hoping for better.”
Four months after taking up the hammer as a 13-year-old the Alan Bertram-coached athlete was winning the Under-15 England Championships, marking her out as a possible star of the future.
Her personal best throw of 55.98m – achieved at the 2011 Scottish Schools Championships in Grangemouth – is the current British Under-17 record, but she will not be competing at the World Junior Championships.
“I only started throwing the hammer three years ago and I think there is a lot of improvement left in me. I am definitely surprised by the progress I have made so far though,” said Reed, who benefits from being a member of the Bank of Scotland Local Heroes programme.
“They don’t like sending under-18 athletes to under-20 championships unless it is exceptional circumstances. They think it will be hard for young people to be exposed to that sort of environment.
“It is a little bit annoying, but I will get another chance in two years probably, which will be a good thing. I will still be a junior then and will have a better chance of doing well.”
Reed was in Edinburgh city centre when the Olympic Torch made its way through the Scottish capital, giving advice to both young and old as a Bank of Scotland Local Hero.
“It was a great experience to get really close to the Olympic Torch,” she revealed. “I got a good view of it. I wasn’t a torchbearer but I had a prototype and everyone was really interested in that.
“I gave people advice on achieving their goals and told them about how I became an athlete. I hope I helped inspire a lot of people, both young and old who were listening to me.”
• Bank of Scotland National School Sport Week took place from 11-15 June 2012 and is Scotland’s biggest school sport event with nearly 2,000 schools and half a million pupils taking part, staging their own Games. Find out more at www.schoolsportweekscotland.org