10,000m must wait as Alistair Brownlee shelves plans to ditch triathlon

Ross McLean
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Alistair Brownlee followed up his Olympic gold at London 2012 with the Commonwealth title this year, but the 10,000m remains a goal
British triathlon star Alistair Brownlee insists his desire to conquer another Olympic discipline continues to burn brightly despite the immediate focus remaining firmly on multistage competition.
The 26-year-old is the reigning Olympic triathlon champion but flirted with an audacious ploy to contest the 10,000m on the track at Hampden Park during this summer’s Commonwealth Games in Glasgow until logistics ultimately put paid to his plans.
Brownlee first raised the prospect of re-writing his script and competing in the 10,000m after providing one of the iconic moments of the 2012 Olympic Games in London when he jogged down the home straight draped in a Union Jack.
But with the countdown to the next Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro well underway, Brownlee believes a more cautious approach is required in order to avoid blurring his sporting lines.
“My aim to try the 10,000m is deeprooted and something I would love to do,” Brownlee told City. A.M. “Perhaps trying different things is part of the ongoing motivation to continue.
“It is certainly something I want to do and hopefully something I will be able to do in the future but it is not on the immediate agenda as that is all about Rio.
“I had a substantial programme planned to try and qualify for the 10,000m at the Commonwealth Games this year but it all went wrong and things conspired against me but it is something I definitely want to return to.
“It would not really be feasible to have a crack until after the next Olympics. To qualify for the 10,000m I would have to be running something like 27 minutes, 30 seconds rather than the 28.30 I have done, and that is a quantum leap.
“The marathon would be another event I would consider. Put me on any start line and that competitive spirit rises to the surface, but given the different emphasis needing in training it would detract from the preparation for the triathlon.”
Brownlee’s heroics at London 2012 catapulted him onto the world stage but his success is far reaching, with Commonwealth and European titles to add to his Olympic gong while he is also a two-time Triathlon World Champion.
He is only a week into training ahead of the new season with another jampacked campaign looming, which includes a potential appearance at the inaugural European Games in Baku, Azerbaijan next June and an assault on the World Series.
And with the spirit of Rio now beginning to possess the world’s elite athletes, Brownlee is adamant success in South America would go some way to topping his epic 2012 victory in Hyde Park.
“It [the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro] is always there in the background,” added Brownlee.
“We are two years or so away from Rio now and during the next year it is important to lay down a marker if I have designs to replicate my success in London. That would be so special.
“Year on year, you set your goals and at the end of that season, you look at what went wrong, how can you get better, the emphasis is always on progression.
“It is a well worn phrase that it is always more different to retain a trophy or a success than to win it initially but that is the goal and what I am working towards.”
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