Pavey relishes return to track while Simpson waits
Devon's Jo Pavey admitted her Olympic heartache earlier this year had been a blessing in disguise, after sealing her Games selection at the second attempt at the Aviva 2012 Trials in Birmingham.
Pavey had originally been hopeful of making Britain's Olympic team in the marathon, but was ultimately edged out after taking the decision to miss the London Marathon.
With rival Briton Claire Hallissey posting a quicker time than Pavey, the 38-year-old Exeter Harriers athlete was overlooked for marathon selection, causing her to make a return to the track.
Pavey made sure that return – she has been part of the British track team at the last three Olympics – was a successful one at Alexander Stadium last Sunday. Victory over 5,000 metres – having already run the London 2012 'A' standard time – was enough to secure a berth for her fourth Games.
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"It was daunting because there were some good girls in there, but I'm really pleased," Pavey told the Western Morning News. "It's a blessing in a disguise, really, that I didn't get a marathon spot.
"When I first didn't get the [Games] spot, there was a bit of concern knowing that I had not run on the track for two years, and so didn't have any times behind me," she added. "When you haven't done it for two years, there's always that nervousness. I felt like I could still do it, but you've always got the risk if you don't do it or you get injured.
"It's definitely a blessing in disguise because I'm loving being back on the track. It's making me feel young again."
While Pavey's place in the capital is secure, things are far from clear-cut for Cornwall's Jemma Simpson.
The Newquay and Par athlete fulfilled half of the selection criteria by coming in the top two in the 800m at the Trials, but she must still run the 'A' standard of 1:59.90 to be considered by team officials
The United States-based 28-year old will seek that mark at this week's European Championships in Helsinki. "If the British trials were like the American trials, then it would be the first three across the line and you'd be able to celebrate and go home," she said, after crossing the line in 2:02.29 for second place.
"My ideal preparation for the Olympics would be to run the 1500m at the Europeans, but that won't happen now. I need the time in the 800m and that means more rounds, which is not what I want. It's an apprehensive time."
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