How bubbly Becky caught running bug

BECKY Lyne has suffered many setbacks along the way to her championship podium finishes since her early years as a 'sparrow legged junior', but her determination has seen her through the rough times.

Wednesday, 26th September 2007, 9:48 am
Updated Wednesday, 26th September 2007, 3:33 pm

Introduced to athletics by her primary school teacher at Nether Green, Lyne 'caught the running bug' progressing to South Yorkshire level and to "what I thought at the time would be the pinnacle of my career" Yorkshire titles over cross country, 800m and 1500m.

"My first breakthrough, came in 1997 where, after only qualifying for the first time, at the English Schools I finished second despite being slowest on paper and as a result gained my first England vest. The excitement and disbelief still sends a shiver down my spine!" says the 25-year-old.

International success had to wait a while, as the future European 800m bronze-medallist was tripped in the final of the European Youth Olympic Days in Edjsberg (1999); got food poisoning at the World Juniors in Chile (2000) and finished in the dreaded fourth position at the European Juniors in Grossetto (2001).

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"By this point I thought that me and medals just weren't meant to be," she said.

Sheffield's 1991 World Student Games were a source of inspiration.

"It gave me my first taste of athletics and left a great sporting infrastructure in the city-something that I have benefited from" she said.

Lyne went on to capture the European under-23 800m title and has subsequently gone onto achieve huge international acclaim.

Praising the two key figures behind her sporting endeavours, her agent; Nic Bideau and coach Dave Turnbull, Lyne comments: " Nic's such a down to earth and funny guy, who's proved to be a great motivator and tactician; offering me sound advice before races.

"This, together with Dave's training and sense of humour, shaped me into a happier and more confident athlete; the results of which were immediate."

Besides her sporting life, there is another side to Lyne, which is highlighted on her website; beckylyne.com - "I decided to provide information about me as a person because let's face it, we all like to have a nosey into other people's lives!" claims the bubbly Rn'B music fan.

With hobbies including cooking, films, watching sport, reading, decorating, shopping and dancing, Lyne says: "As a way to raise money for some charities that are close to my heart, as well as to 'give back' to the sport, I offer my services for school assemblies and club presentations."