The Olympic gold medallist and ambassador for the UK School Games 2009 says "The reward is getting to the end of a task and to the end of a dream."
Raise Your Game: How did you get involved in athletics?
Darren Campbell: My mum watched me run in my first ever sports day when I was eight-years-old. She then took me down to my local athletics club and that's where the dream began. I tried out all the different athletics events and fell in love with the sport. By the age of 12 I knew it was what I wanted to do.
RYG: What makes athletics special to you?
DC: It's different to team sports because you go out there and compete for yourself. If you win, it's down to you and if you lose, it's down to you. I guess you could say that I like to be in control of my own destiny.
Darren Campbell MBE
12 September 1973
100m & 200m, 4x100m relay
- Appointed MBE (2005)
- Gold - 4x100m relay team, Athens Olympics (2004)
- Silver - 200m, Sydney Olympics (2000)
- Became one of the most successful British athletes at junior level, winning four gold and two silver medals at International Championships (1991-1992).
RYG: Is it a sport that people of all abilities can enjoy?
DC: Athletics has many different events so there's bound to be one that you're quite good at. Whether it's a throwing event, a sprinting event, a distance event or hurdles, there are so many activities to choose from. Anybody can take part and it's all about having fun.
RYG: What has athletics given you?
DC: It's taught me discipline, the ability to focus and to do everything I can to achieve my dream. It has made me more confident especially competing against other athletes. It's given me the will to never give up until the race is over and that is a skill that I have transferred into other areas of my life. I am always looking at different ways of achieving my goals.
RYG: What is the reward for you?
DC: The reward is getting to the end of a task and to the end of a dream. From the age of 12 I wanted to go to the Olympic Games, so to actually go the Olympic Games three times and win two medals is my dream come true. Athletics has also giving me the opportunity to try to inspire the next generation to believe in themselves. Have a dream and never give up on that dream. If I was able to realise mine, then I'm sure if you put your mind to it, you can realise your own dreams.
RYG: What would be your advice for young people looking to get involved in sport?
DC: Try as many sports as possible because that's the only way you are going to find a sport that you are passionate about. If you're passionate about something, then you will always give your best. Don't take it too seriously because once you decide to make it your career there's enough pressure then (laughs). Just have fun!
There's always a game next week where you get a chance to prove yourself again.
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