Dalston’s Arthur out to keep improving despite fulfilling one of his main career goals

Reuben Arthur (second left) won relay gold at the 2018 Commonwealth Games (pic: Martin Rickett/PA)

Reuben Arthur (second left) won relay gold at the 2018 Commonwealth Games (pic: Martin Rickett/PA) - Credit: PA Wire/PA Images

Young sprinter reflects on successful year that saw him win relay gold at the Commonwealth Games

Reuben Arthur has already achieved his career ambition of winning a gold medal at the grand age of 21, but don’t think for a moment that the runner is stopping there.

The Dalston speedster wasn’t meant to be on the Gold Coast for the Commonwealth Games, let alone standing top of the podium for England following a stellar 4x100m performance.

Arthur was called up little over a month before the competition begun and went from training in north London to playing Mario Kart with Harry Aikines-Aryeetey in the athletes’ village Down Under.

But having won that relay medal in April, Arthur revealed all negative pressure has been released and hopes his first major gold medal is the first of many to come.

He said: “The biggest change for me is that a lot of people who have been in my position before, spend their whole career chasing a medal or for a bit of validation saying ‘I was a good athlete because I did this’.

“But getting that so early in my career takes a lot of negative pressure off my shoulders.

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“I don’t have to chase that first medal anymore. I want more medals, but I’ll still always have that memory of my first, that has driven me on to chase more.

“Now that I don’t have to prove anything I want some more medals to prove to myself.”

By his own admission, that gold medal helped Arthur rediscover his appreciation for hard work as the good news kept on coming in 2018.

Arthur graduated from Goldsmiths, University of London with a degree in psychology and management and with a few life goals ticked off the list, the next hurdle is qualifying for the European Indoor Championships next year in Glasgow.

“It’s not been too shabby this year!” said Arthur, who was speaking during SportsAid Week, an initiative to help raise awareness of the charity and the work it does supporting the next generation of British sports stars.

“Without my achievements this year I don’t think I would discovered my appreciation for hard work and being a good athlete.

“It’s not something you just do, you need to wake up every day and be a good athlete and that takes hard work.

“I’m going back to winter training so that’s going to be great! I’m looking forward to it and then the European Indoor Championships which are in Glasgow so that’s a nice opportunity to have a home games and have some a bit of home support behind you.

“I really want to get to the World Championships in Doha and I’m working very hard for that and changing elements of my training to give me the best chance to get selected for those competitions and I think it’s going to be an interesting year.”

*SportsAid Week has returned in 2018. The initiative originally launched in 2016 to mark the charity’s 40th anniversary and generated over £40,000.

SportsAid supports over 1,000 athletes each year by providing them with a financial award to help towards training and competition costs.

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