The world and European indoor long jump medallist is aiming to make the podium at the IAAF World Championships in London
After breaking the British indoor long jump record with her 6.97m leap at the European Indoor Championships in Belgrade last month, Lorraine Ugen is targeting the seven-metre mark and a world medal in London.
The 25-year-old added European indoor silver to the world indoor bronze she claimed last year in Portland and hopes to gain another global podium place when the IAAF World Championships take place in the UK capital in August.
“If you go in there telling yourself ‘I’m a medallist’, then psychologically you’re setting yourself up to believe and achieve that,” she says.
“I know that going into the World Championships, if I want to get a medal I’m going to have to get over seven metres.
“I’ve been chasing the seven-metre mark for a while now and it’s getting closer and closer. I remember when I was chasing six metres and I wanted to get over that six-metre barrier so much. Once I got over it, it was so easy to keep jumping it.
“I know it’s in my body, I just haven’t quite been able to execute it in competition yet.”
While Ugen was in long jump action in Belgrade, her room-mate Asha Philip was also in British record-breaking form as she clocked 7.06 to gain 60m gold and the long jumper believes that success breeds success.
“I think when you see other people performing well and jumping well, it motivates you to think, ‘okay I need to train harder’,” she says.
“Seeing the performances happening around you from other team-mates, it makes you think, ‘I need to be up there with the rest of the team, medalling and achieving good performances’.”
Looking ahead to the London World Championships and the home advantage, Ugen adds: “I remember going to the London Diamond League the year after the Olympics and it was crazy in there.
“I think when I’m jumping I’ll thrive off of that. It will be nice to have that boost and that extra crowd support to push you and make you run that bit faster and push yourself that bit extra.”
» The 2017 World Para Athletics Championships from July 14-23 and the IAAF World Championships from August 4-13 will bring together 3300 athletes from more than 200 countries. It will be the first time the two events will be hosted by the same city in the same summer. Buy tickets at paraathleticschampionships.com and iaafworldchampionships.com