Commonwealth Games “only thing not on my CV,” says four-time London 2012 Paralympic gold medallist
The achievements of David Weir at London 2012 established him as a household name during the highest profile Paralympics ever and he has faced endless media interviews and personal appearances since the Games.
Yet, despite the adulation and deserved recognition of his quadruple gold in the T54 800m, 1500m, 5000m and marathon, the competitive fires are still flickering within the 33-year-old wheelchair racer supreme.
“I’ve got that drive to get back to training already, which I didn’t think I would have,” he says. “I thought after the Games I wouldn’t feel the urge to get back in my chair. But I have, which is a good thing.
“For a few years I felt like the training was a chore. But then I loved every minute of it (leading up in London 2012), which was strange for me. Now, I have been to the track and seen young athletes training and it has given me the urge.”
Weir admits that he already has a couple of goals in mind and first up is the Virgin London Marathon in April, a race he won for the sixth time in 2012 to equal the record held by Tanni Grey- Thompson.
Now he wants to have the most wins outright all to himself. “I thought it would have been my last London Marathon last year,” he says. “But I’d like to get that record. It’s going to be a tough ask, because I am leaving it late for training. It’s going to be a challenge, but I like challenges.”
Longer-term he also has an eye on the 2014 Commonwealth Games in Glasgow and the possibility of another major championships on British soil. “I’d like to do the Commonwealths,” he says. “I have not represented England, never raced in a Commonwealth Games. That’s the only thing that is not on my CV.”
Weir’s performances in an incredible series of races at the sport’s highest level captivated audiences and proved Weir to be head and shoulders above his peers both tactically and athletically.
The obvious incentive of a home Games was a huge motivator for Weir and, although the London Marathon and 2014 Commonwealth Games hold different appeal, he is non-committal regarding the 2013 IPC World Championships in Lyon, France, or the 2016 Rio Paralympics.
“The World Championships are on, but London was so special I don’t want to go and not do that well,” he adds. “I put so much in for London. Can I do it again for Rio? I don’t know.”
» This is an extract from an interview with David Weir from the January 10 issue of Athletics Weekly, which is available here. David spoke to Chris Broadbent.