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My Most Memorable Race

It was the nationals and it was my second time there. I had failed the first time and was very keen on winning the title the second time.
I gave it my best shot, and even though I did not time my best, I still won the gold medal.

After the first failure, I trained for it 6 hours a day. My coach supported me a lot throughout the year. The race was held in North India in a place called Punjab in February in the year 2002.

We traveled for three days because we were a team of 180 athletes from all over the State. I am a sprinter and I clocked 12.01 seconds in the 100 meters race. This was when I was in class 10, in the year 2002. My previous timings used to be between 12.03 and 12.07. They kept fluctuating at different other open Nationals and State level competitions. Inter-club competitions etc.

During the race, I was fifteen, in class ten. It was extremely cold and I had to pay special attention on warming up. This time I knew I had to make it. It was the last competition of my high school life and I had one shot to make it to the top. I wanted to be crowned the fastest girl in the country in the under-sixteen category. I trained earnestly every day whether rain or shine.

My coach made me realise how capable I was. Before the race, I felt confident. I was not sure I’d win, but I was confident that it was going to be my personal best performance. During the race, I still remember there was a foul start by another athlete and that feeling of fear started creeping in. my mind was set the first time they said "on you marks". When it had to be done again, I began to get a little nervous.

It was a short race so there was no question of getting tired. It was a tough race and I could see all my opponents running right next to me. We were all giving it our best shot and I kept telling myself to give it more than I ever have. When I did this, I started sprinting ahead of everyone else. The rest were falling behind and I was running towards victory.

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On the day of the race, you have to make sure you warm up well. How you perform on the final day only depends on how earnestly and hard you have trained. Another important thing to remember is to never bother about how the others perform. Concentrate on your own performance. Do your best and God will handle the rest.

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