US 100m hurdles sensation Brianna Rollins reveals how she put together an unbeaten 2013, culminating in world championship gold.
Competing with the best
“After the 2012 Olympic trials, and getting sixth place, I was still excited because I was in the finals, and I was one of the only college athletes in the finals. After that I realised: ‘Oh, I can compete with these girls’.
“I started taking things more seriously. I actually like lifting weights more now because I know the importance of it. I focused more and took advantage of the talent I was blessed with.”
Keeping cool in big races
“I just basically try to stay calm. I’m a very calm person and I just try and treat every meet the same, because it’s all a track meet. Every meet is the same, they just have different names.
“I don’t run with thoughts of ‘oh, it’s a big meet, it’s a huge crowd’ – that brings on a lot more pressure. I just try and stay calm and relax, and just continue to focus on what I have to do that day”
World gold in Moscow
“Before I even stepped on the line, it was very emotional for me, especially when we were coming through, behind where the crowd was. You have people from other countries cheering for you. People that I don’t even know!
“It was overwhelming a little bit, but still exciting, and I just took full advantage of that, and just appreciated the whole moment.
Medal count: In the space of ten minutes, Brigetta Barrett (left) secured high jump silver and Rollins took 100m hurdles gold for the USA.
“When I finally finished and crossed that line, it was such a relief. I was like: Yes! I finally did it. All the work that I’ve done this whole year has finally paid off.”
Watch Rollins’ stunning comeback to win gold over Olympic champion Sally Pearson, here.
“This season was kinda scary. I was like: ‘I can’t believe I’m running this fast, especially at 21 years old’. I just continued to push on, doing what I’ve been doing all year.
“Of course the world record is a goal, but I wouldn’t set it on myself. I just try to go along with how my fitness is going, and just try to compete.
“My coach always says that I’ve got the potential to run really fast. I’ve proved that to myself this year. Putting pressure on someone for the world record, it is kind of overwhelming, especially trying to live up to everybody’s expectations.
“I’ll just continue to stay focused on doing what I have to do: be consistent, train hard, don’t become complacent, and continue to have that hunger inside.
“I want to break the world record, but we will see. Next year, or whenever it may be…”