Stroke of pain as Motherwell Olympic ace Deborah Kerr misses Olympic K1 500m sprint final

Deborah Kerr in race action (Pic by Antony Edmonds)Deborah Kerr in race action (Pic by Antony Edmonds)
Deborah Kerr in race action (Pic by Antony Edmonds)
Motherwell Olympic kayak sprint racer Deborah Kerr ended her Tokyo 2020 campaign last Thursday by failing to qualify from the K1 500m sprint semi-finals.

The former Dalziel High School pupil finished seventh in a time of 1:55.955, which despite being a strong performance was a bit off the pace. She had reached the semi-final and 'A' final of the K1 200m earlier in the week.

She said: "I definitely went into this race treating it as my final, which is why I didn't feel so nervous.

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"Going to the 'A' final of the 200 felt like such a bonus earlier in the week.

"I was a little off the pace today, but some of the girls who made the 'B' final would normally be in the 'A' final, so it shows how high the standard is here.

"I felt OK out there. There's learning on how to approach this racing. Racing every day so far, you start to struggle towards the end, so a little bit of extra has done me the world of good.

"But I'm delighted with how I've done, and I can be really happy with myself.

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"I wasn't expecting to be here and I said at the start of the year, Tokyo would be a bonus, so to get to an 'A' final in the 200 and to be in the mix in the 500, I couldn't ask for much more.

"It's only up from here."

Sunday saw a successful Olympic Games end with Great Britain having amassed a total of 65 medals made up of 22 golds, 21 silvers and 22 bronzes.

This placed us fourth in the final medal table, behind only the USA, China and Japan.

Great Britain’s final figure of 65 medals matched the number won at London 2012 and made Tokyo our second most successful overseas Olympics after Rio 2016.

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Britain won 67 medals at the Rio Games - finishing second in the medal table - and UK Sport had set a medal target range of between 45 and 70 medals for these delayed Olympics.

Team GB chef de mission Mark England hailed our final medal haul, saying: "Not only has the team made history but it has probably made history on the back of the most complex and most challenging and difficult environment that we will face certainly in my lifetime.

"It has been against all the odds and I think it is the greatest achievement in British Olympic history. It has been the miracle of Tokyo.”

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