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Williams-Darling plans stress-free year

9 January 2006
www.caribbeannetnews.com

Tonique Williams-Darling Tonique Williams-Darling
World and Olympic 400-metres champion Tonique Williams-Darling from the Bahamas is planning a stress-free year, seeing that there are no major championships in the forthcoming track and field season.

In 2004, Williams-Darling, 29, struggled for motivation ahead of the Athens Olympic Games and after striking gold at the World Championships in Helsinki last summer, she revealed the triumph had been a roller coaster experience for her.

"I would say that being able to pull off the Olympic title and then come back a year later and pull off the World Championship title has just been a roller coaster experience for me," Williams-Darling said after her remarkable victory in Helsinki last August.

"It is not an easy experience. I will tell you, definitely, that in the off-season it was just a struggle to go out there every day and practice because, coming off the Jackpot races and after the Olympics experience, you are just kind of worn out mentally. It’s not even physical."

With this thought and experience in mind, the Bahamian has decided to take a lighter approach to her 2006 season, noting that she wants to have a fun and an easy year on the circuit.

"Two thousand and six will be a very laid back year because there is no World Championships or Olympic Games and so I'm just going to go out there and have fun this year, compete whenever I want to, just try to have some good races and see how far I can push it," Williams-Darling said.

"I'm really looking forward to a stress-free year and just have races of my choice and not any major competitions like the Commonwealth Games. I think it will give me a chance to regroup and get ready for 2007."

Williams-Darling's hunger for success saw her coming from behind to overpower world leader and pre-event favourite Sanya Richards of USA to pull off an astonishing victory in Helsinki, a win for which she gave all credit to her Christian faith.

"It has really been the source of my spiritual foundation and just my faith that if I put everything in God that He will help me through. It’s not even a matter of winning medals or whatever just a belief that I can do all things through Christ," she revealed after falling to the soaking wet track in Finland.

The Bahamian 400m queen finished the year as the second best female quarter miler behind Jamaican-born Richards on the International Association of Athletic Federations (IAAF) event world ranking.



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"It is not an easy experience. I will tell you, definitely, that in the off-season it was just a struggle to go out there every day and practice because, coming off the Jackpot races and after the Olympics experience, you are just kind of worn out mentally. It’s not even physical."" target="digg"> Digg


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