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Jones ready for Great North Run debut
JADE JONES will make her Great North Run debut tomorrow, and is setting her sights on doubling the distance in the near future.
Jones turned 17 this year, so is eligible to contest the 13.1mile distance, having whetted her appetite at the shorter 2km race through the Tyne Tunnel where she returned last night, having won last year.
“I'm really enjoying the half-marathon distances right now,” said Jones, who will represent England in next summer’s Commonwealth Games.
“It's different, but when you watch wheelchair racers you can see that they can take part in anything from 100m up and do that without problems, but runners' training has to be more specialised.
“Wheelchair racers can do whatever they like and train the same way for it, so it's good to get the opportunity to do that.
“I've always wanted to do the Great North and also the London Marathon, so I'm happy to be doing this for the first time. Maybe not next year but somewhere down the line I'll do the London Marathon too.”
Jones is gaining in on-track experience having raced in four finals in Lyon at the IPC World Championships this summer, and, at the tender age of 17, believes she can only get better from here.
“Wheelchair racers don't peak until their late twenties, early thirties, so I've got a long way to go yet,” she explained. “It's getting that experience, learning how people race, learning my strengths and weaknesses, I'm progressing and looking forward to next year.”
Jones, who studies at Guisborough’s Prior Pursglove College, faces a hectic summer in 2014 where she will complete her A-Levels before contesting the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow.
She admits the balance is difficult to maintain, but enjoys student life. “My college is supportive and help me where I can. I take a lot of my work with me. It's do-able, but difficult,” said Jones.
“I'm going into my second year of A-Levels. I enjoy studying. I don't enjoy the revision but enjoy being a student. I get my results a couple of weeks after I race at the Commonwealths so it's going to be a big summer.”
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