POSTED: Saturday July 28th 2012

Samantha Murray - Small Town U.K. to the London Olympics

Pentathlete Samantha Murray, 22, of Great Britain, has qualified for her first Olympic games, and it’s all happening in her home country.

With several podium finished on the UIPM world circuit in 2012, including a dominant first at the Budapest Cup, Samantha is confident leading into the games,

“I’m going to do my best and make it happen, especially in front of a home crowd… (but) I just want to stay level-headed.”

“I won a medal at the world championships, so I know I have it in me and I can perform at the level to win a medal. However, this is pentathlon… there are uncontrollables such as the horse, or who you are fencing (against).”

In 2011, Murray was on the fringes of selection for the British national team. She explains her improvement this year, and consequent Olympic selection, is a sign of growing maturity and an increased capacity to handle the mental aspects of competition,

“I made changes to my lifestyle. I live in a non-party orientated environment. I get lots of sleep, recover well, eat well and everything is geared around training and focusing on competition.”

“I’ve improved in each of my disciplines. However, I think that the approach in my mind, to competition, is what has improved the most.”

Inspired by British pentathletes, like Steph Cook, Kate Allenby and Georgina Harland, Samantha has long fostered ambitions of cracking the Olympic stage,

“When I was a little girl, I knew I wanted to go to the Olympics… It’s been a long tough road, but it’s the goal I’ve always had in my sights… When you work hard at something you can make dreams reality.”

“At the time when I qualified for the games I just felt so proud that all my hard-work, dedication, concentration and determination had really paid off… to be an Olympian is so exciting and such an honour.”

Born in Preston, Murray is happy to be performing in her own backyard and that her fans at home will have a chance to watch,

“I’m from a small town in the north and I know that everybody’s pretty amazed that someone has gone on to the Olympics. I really hope I can inspire some people from my hometown to try a sport, to get involved in competition, or to even try pentathlon.”

“Not only is it the pinnacle of an athlete’s career… it’s also going to be a really unforgettable and special time. Everyone is embracing being British at the moment. Every time I go home, there are more flags in the streets.”

Samantha also respects the diversity and international dynamic that is typical of the Games, stating,

“The Olympic ethos is one that unites everybody. You have to remember to embrace all the cultures and the whole history of the Olympics, and realise what it actually means… Good sportsmanship, lots of smiling and enjoying yourself, but also having that inner-lion ready to fight for a medal.”

Knowing that many athletes never get a chance to compete in an Olympic event on home soil, Samantha knows just how lucky she is,

“It’s in Britain, and it’s a really privilege for us… for me it’s really once in a lifetime.”

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Keywords · Modern Pentathlon · London 2012 · Pentathlon · Pentathlete · Olympics · Olympic Games · London · UIPM · IOC · Coubertin · Run · Shoot · Swim · Ride · Fence · Great Britain · gold · champion · Samantha Murray · British · Murray

Name: Matt Pound
Organization: Union Internationale De Pentathlon Moderne - UIPM
Phone: +377 9777 8555

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