Having already won Championships as a Junior, Morgan Lake is starting up a great career in athletics, achieving a personal best in the individual high jump at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games. Earlier this year, we caught up with Morgan to find out about the lead-up to the Commonwealth Games, the Smash Helsinki event and a typical competition day.
You have been selected to represent Team England at this year’s Commonwealth Games at the Gold Coast, how did you feel finding out you’d made the team?
I was over the moon and delighted to be selected. Getting to travel to Australia and visit a beautiful country, and be able to compete in a sport and an event I love, it’s all pretty special.
How will you prepare for your debut Commonwealth Games and how different do you find competing in hotter countries such as Australia?
It is going to be difficult, as my current focus and training is geared towards my indoor season, but hopefully when I depart for Australia this month, I will be able to acclimatise and get ready to jump outdoors relatively quickly. It will be a challenge, but I’m looking forward to it.
Last year, you competed at the World Championships in London, how was it competing there for Team GB in front of a home crowd?
Competing at the Olympic Stadium after being there as a spectator in 2012 was amazing. The support from such a knowledgeable home crowd made it all the more special!
With Usain Bolt and Mo Farah both having their final race at this Championships, did you get chance to watch them compete?
I did get to watch them but was watching from our team hotel, as I believe I was competing the next day. It’s always inspiring to watch Mo and Usain compete, they make it look easy and it’s a testament to the hard work and dedication they have put into their events.
Can you tell us what your typical competition day looks like?
Hopefully have had a good night’s sleep, get a decent breakfast of porridge, bananas and a black coffee. Normally try and get to the track two hours before my competition, so if it’s an evening meet, I’ll try and have an afternoon nap. When I get to the track, I have a set warm-up routine, making sure I’m bouncy and agile, and then it’s GO time.
What would you say has been the highlight of your career so far and what is your current personal best?
Winning a double Gold at the World Junior Championships, as it was my first major medal.
You recently attended the Smash Helsinki event, how was this?
Being supported by PwC, I got the chance to visit the event Smash in late 2017 and it’s incredible to see the other side of sport, and the great technologies and advancements that these companies are doing in the world of sport. It was a lot to take in, but it was great to be there and experience something different.
Have you always been interested in athletics?
I can’t recall a time where athletics hasn’t been a big part of my life. The first live sporting event I watched was the Grand Prix at Crystal Palace before my first birthday! So it’s definitely been a life-long interest.
Is athletics something you do full-time and were there any other sports you considered?
I’m studying for a psychology degree at Loughborough University, whilst also training as an athlete. I really enjoyed swimming and netball growing up, but I would always go back to the athletics track.
You’ve previously been a guest on A Question of Sport, did you enjoy appearing on the show?
I have always watched A Question of Sport, I love Sue Barker (who was so nice when we met) and when I had a chance to go on the show I jumped (no pun intended) at it. I was initially concerned that I’d get all the questions wrong, but luckily I think I did alright (despite being on the losing team) and I hope I get the chance to go on the show again somewhere down the line.
Are you looking ahead to the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games?
Not really as I like to focus on the here and now. Obviously I know it’s there and would love to be going, but I’ve got some major competitions to get to in 2018, so that’s my focus for now.
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