Sarah WARNOCK claims she’s ready to elbow her way back into the UK’s long jump elite after banishing her injury nightmares with victory at the Scottish Indoor Championships in Glasgow, writes MARK WOODS.
The Capital hopeful looked set for a big breakthrough after landing UK bronze two years ago in a personal best of 6.42m but her bid was derailed by an ankle injury that summer.
But the 24-year-old feels she is starting to resemble her former self in the wake of leaping 6.13m to see off Edinburgh AC club-mate Gillian Cooke at the Emirates Arena to complete a hat-trick of national titles.
“I’m just happy to be jumping again,” she said. “I jumped 6.10 a few weeks ago and I was celebrating like I’d done a personal best. I was thinking: ‘it’s fine. I can jump. My injuries have gone’. This was a tricky day because we had to wait a while, then someone got injured. But it’s still a season’s best and it’s going in the right direction. I just have to keep it there. And I defended my title.”
Warnock, who works part-time in an ice cream shop in Musselburgh to fund her sporting career, admits it was difficult to keep her cool during a six-month spell when little went to plan. Now pain-free, she will look towards this month’s UK Indoors in Sheffield with greater ease.
“Before, my ankle joint wasn’t stable,” she said. “So my bones were sliding forward. And because I continued to jump on it, I hurt my groin. It just went from bad to worse but I was stubborn and kept going.
“Before the Scottish Open two weeks ago, I said: ‘I don’t know if I want to do this’. So to see six in the metres column is a big relief.”
Elsewhere, Lasswade’s Guy Learmonth opened up his 800m season with victory in Vienna in a time of 1:47.35.