A round-up of cross country action in Derry-Londonderry as athletes race for masters titles
Goldie Sayers announces retirementMay 3, 2017
The British javelin record-holder is announced as Team GB’s deputy chef de mission for the Gyor 2017 European Youth Olympic Festival as she hangs up her spikes
Goldie Sayers has announced her decision to retire from athletics but will still remain involved with the sport as she confirmed her plans for the future.
The British javelin record-holder, who has competed at three Olympic Games, has been announced as Team GB’s deputy chef de mission for the Gyor 2017 European Youth Olympic Festival and hopes to continue passing on her experience and knowledge to the next generation of athletes.
“I am proud to retire after a 20-year career in athletics as a three-time Olympian, British record-holder, 11-time national champion and – hopefully – an Olympic medallist,” the 34-year-old said, in reference to the possible reallocation of medals for Beijing 2008 following retroactive testing.
“I am also extremely privileged to have captained the record-breaking European team in 2014, and wish all my teammates every success in the months and years ahead.”
She added: “I am very keen to help develop the sport in the UK and help youngsters advance in a highly technical event. I would love to help influence the influencers and get javelin throwing in the UK back up to levels we used to enjoy when I was a youngster. This can only happen through good coaching and leadership and I am keen to help develop existing coaches and find more of them.
“I am currently passing on my experience through online mentoring website Javelin Champ and hope to coach in the future when I have built my property investment business to a level that I can then spend the time that training athletes requires since there are currently no paid coaching positions.
“I will continue sitting on the Board of the British Olympic Association Athletes’ Commission and I am looking forward to helping lead Team GB as deputy chef de mission for the European Youth Olympic Festival in Hungary this summer. They’re great events and help the next generation of British Olympians progress in the early stages of the sporting careers.”
Sayers’ role with Team GB will be to lead on athlete engagement during the event and ensure Britain’s young competitors make the most of their first multi-sport event experience.
Paul Ford, Team GB’s chef de mission for Gyor 2017, said: “Having Goldie join Team GB as deputy chef de mission for Gyor 2017 is fantastic news for the athletes we select for the festival. Not only will they be competing in a multi-sport environment for the first time and living with thousands of others in the village but they will also get the chance to learn first-hand from a high quality Olympic athlete with 20 years of major championship experience.”
Reflecting on Sayers’ career, British Athletics performance director Neil Black said: “Goldie’s javelin career has been inspirational. She is up there with the all-time greats of British throwing. She first broke the British junior javelin record in 2001 and continued to break British records throughout her career.
“While today marks the end of Goldie’s involvement in athletics as a competitor, I am glad she intends to remain active within the sport and wish her all the luck with her appointment as deputy chef de mission at the European Youth Olympics festival this summer.”
He added: “Hopefully, at some point in the very near future, Goldie will be awarded the Olympic bronze medal she rightly deserves from Beijing, which will top off a fantastic athletics career.”