Printer Friendly

Super Heather bows out at top.

Byline: By Bill McGuirk

Great Britain's athletes found medals hard to come by at the World Championships in Helsinki and came in for criticism from lots of quarters.

However, at least one North East athlete came home with a medal from a major international competition at the weekend.

Durham-based Heather Monro defied the hot and humid conditions to take a bronze in the World Orienteering Championships in Japan last week ( only the third time in the history of the competition that a medal has been won by a British athlete.

But sadly, despite also winning a bronze award in the World Games in Germany earlier in the season, Monro is sticking to her plans to walk away from the competitive side of the sport.

"Don't get me wrong, I've thoroughly enjoyed orienteering but I feel the time is right to retire," said 33-year-old Monro after returning home this week.

"The race in Japan was as near perfect as possible and was spot on technically which, despite the really, really hot and humid conditions, came as a bit of a surprise.

"Thankfully, I was well prepared after having environmental chamber sessions prior to going out to Japan at the University of Teesside.

"The conditions caught a lot of athletes out but I managed to get through OK." Despite her success, Monro feels it's right to move on and try other things after spending most of her adult life orienteering.

"I am retiring because I feel I am ready to call it a day. Life beyond beckons!

"Fifteen years of hard training and sacrifice is enough. I still love competing, but want to move on to other challenges and spend more time with friends and family.

"I have travelled the world, met so many fantastic people and had so many life-enriching experiences through elite sport. This is what I will take with me after retirement.

"The medal in the World Championships is just a wonderful bonus at the end of a fantastic career."

While Monro is positive about turning away from orienteering, she will definitely not be hanging up her competitive shoes for good.

"I have no plans to move away from the region and do plan to have fun `playing' with adventure racing, fell running, mountain biking, mountain marathons and cross-country running," she explained.

"In fact, I have an adventure triathlon lined-up for this weekend but after that who knows?

"I have no idea how motivated I will be to keep training or competing. I just want to enjoy things, but at what level, only time will tell."
COPYRIGHT 2005 MGN Ltd.
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 2005 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

Article Details
Printer friendly Cite/link Email Feedback
Title Annotation:Sport
Publication:Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)
Date:Aug 18, 2005
Words:427
Previous Article:Shorts.
Next Article:Officials shame absent athletes.

Terms of use | Privacy policy | Copyright © 2021 Farlex, Inc. | Feedback | For webmasters