Lynsey Sharp heads home with Rio on her mind

Lynsey Sharp did not qualify for the 800m final
Lynsey Sharp did not qualify for the 800m final
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Lynsey Sharp will jet back from Oregon today to begin her Olympic countdown with the Capital star vowing she’s ready for Rio.

The 2012 European champion drew a blank from the World Indoor Championships by crashing out in Saturday’s 800 metres heats, coming second to eventual gold medallist Francine Niyonsaba of Burundi in a time not quick enough to advance.

But it’s been a winter of progress for the hopeful who took a giant slice off the Scottish record during a race in Boston, USA last month. And with a few extra tactical tricks up her sleeve to fine tune before she likely opens her summer season at the Diamond League meeting in Rabat on May 22, Sharp insists she hasn’t fully tapped up her potential.

“25 is not old,” she said. “I could at least have another two Olympics in my career and I think I have still a lot to learn in the event, underlined by how much I’ve learnt in the indoor season. I’ve a long way to go.

“It’s encouraging I’ve done 1:57 but there’s still a lot of room for improvement. If I get stronger and build my endurance, there’s further I can go.”

Edinburgh AC clubmate Chris O’Hare slumped to eighth in the 1500m final as American rival Matt Centrowitz took victory. O’Hare admitted it was a performance to forget.

“My coach said to me before the race, if you put yourself in the right position, it’s either going to be there or it’s not,” he said. “It wasn’t and that’s what’s annoying. Because I did everything I can do physically and mentally. But when I went to turn it on, it didn’t happen.”

Steph Twell’s brave bid in the 3000m came up short as she ended up sixth behind Ethiopian Genzebe Dibaba, with fellow Scot Jo Moultrie 13th on her major championship debut.

GB&NI ended with one silver and two bronzes with London 2012 medallist Robbie Grabarz headlining their haul with second place in the high jump.

“I knew what heights it was going to take to get the medals and I knew I wanted to get 2.33m at the first attempt to put myself in contention,” the 28-year-old said. “But I still couldn’t quite believe it.”