SOUTH Yorkshire Olympic legend Dorothy Hyman today said she will be holding back tears of joy when she becomes one of the first people in the county to carry the flame, writes Graham Walker.
The former world sprint legend of the 1960s won every honour short of Olympic gold.
But on Monday she gets her hands on the iconic golden torch.
And the 71-year-old, in an exclusive video chat, admitted: “It’s going to be so very emotional for me. I really am going to have to try hard not to cry.”
VIDEO: Press the play button to watch digital editor Graham Walker’s special video report.
Dorothy will carry the torch on its leg along Pontefract Road, Lundwood, just a few miles from her home in Stairfoot, Barnsley.
Arguably Britain’s best ever female sprinter, in her time she was the fastest woman on the planet.
She won the 100 metres silver and 200m bronze at the Rome Olympics, in 1960, then a 4x100m team relay bronze four years later, in Tokyo.
Dorothy has gold and silver medals from the Commonwealth Games and European Championships.
She even won the BBC Sports Personality Of The Year trophy of all-time greats back in 1963.
She remains highly regarded today with two stadiums named after her, in her home village of Cudworth and neighbouring Wombwell.
But, in typical modest style, she has almost faded away into the background of the athletics world.
She will be cheering on Jess Ennis and the rest of Team GB from the comfort of her own home.
She said: “Carrying the torch on Monday will certainly bring all my Olympic memories flooding back. But I hope they don’t expect me to still be sprinting. I’m not in bad shape but it’ll be a quick walk, not a run.
“I’ve already received my kit, but we get the torch on the day. I wasn’t going to buy mine, until other people said they would if I didn’t.
“I didn’t want it to leave Barnsley. I’ll treasure it and show it with all my medals.
“It’s a great honour and I’m looking forward to seeing lots of family and friends along the route.”