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Marilyn's still on the right track

PUBLISHED: 13:42 11 February 2009 | UPDATED: 13:28 24 August 2010

GLASGOW, UNITED KINGDOM - JANUARY 31:  Marilyn Okoro of Great Britain and NI wins the Womens 800 metres during the Aviva International Match on January 31, 2009 at Kelvin Hall, Glasgow, Scotland.  (Photo by John Gichigi/Getty Images)

GLASGOW, UNITED KINGDOM - JANUARY 31: Marilyn Okoro of Great Britain and NI wins the Womens 800 metres during the Aviva International Match on January 31, 2009 at Kelvin Hall, Glasgow, Scotland. (Photo by John Gichigi/Getty Images)

2009 Getty Images

By Ziad Chaudry MARILYN Okoro stepped up a gear – but pushed herself a distance too far in the motor city of Stuttgart on Saturday. The 24-year-old 800m specialist from Neasden severely paid the price for delving into the deep end with her less favoured d

By Ziad Chaudry

MARILYN Okoro stepped up a gear - but pushed herself a distance too far in the motor city of Stuttgart on Saturday.

The 24-year-old 800m specialist from Neasden severely paid the price for delving into the deep end with her less favoured distance of 1,500m by finishing fifth.

That was despite recording a personal best of four minutes 22.33 seconds at the prestigious IAAF Sparkassen-Cup event - nearly nine seconds behind deserved race winner and GB colleague Susan Scott.

With no 800m race anywhere on the athletics circuit this week, Okoro was using Saturday's run as a build-up for her forthcoming indoor 800m schedule.

That begins with this weekend's Aviva UK Championships and European trials at Sheffield before races in Stockholm, Birmingham and possibly the European Indoor Championships in Turin.

"I had to do whatever I could but at the end of the day it was a training run so I have no complaints," said Okoro. "I've overcome the fear of doing 800m so I will overcome the fear of doing 1500m - it will come.

"I put myself out there in the first few laps but those girls are experienced 1,500m runners and I know my body will go when it's time to go. I didn't enjoy that but it still needed to be done.

"I've set myself a tough challenge because I want to be world class over three events (400m, 800m, 1,500m) so it's going to take its toll, but it's all an investment."

Despite the blip, Okoro opened up her indoor campaign in style the previous weekend by winning the Aviva International 800m race in a time of 2:02.53, and also picked up an outdoor win over 400m in South Africa last month.


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