Iona Lake presented with £1,000 by Broadland council
PUBLISHED: 09:43 13 March 2018 | UPDATED: 10:06 13 March 2018
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An athlete who is competing in the Australian Commonwealth Games next month has received a £1,000 grant from the council.
Iona Lake met council chairman David Ward at Thorpe Lodge on Monday, March 12 for a formal announcement of Broadland District Council’s Sports Champions of 2018.
The 25-year-old steeplechase runner received the largest grant, however smaller grants of £125 will be given to 13 other sportspeople in the district, from disciplines including karate, rowing, wheelchair tennis and skiing.
She said: “It’s amazing getting this money, and such a shock.”
Miss Lake, from Hainford, represented Great Britain at the European Under-23 Championships in Estonia in 2015, and won the 3,000-metre women’s steeplechase at the World Championship Team Trials in Birmingham last year.
She said: “At the moment getting by is hard because I work for my family business, which I’m enjoying, but I actually never know what’s going to happen.
“It’s quite hard to work alongside athletics because you don’t know what you’re going to qualify for.”
Miss Lake has been running seriously since the age of 15.
She said: “I started steeplechasing mainly because I always performed much better at cross country, and I think with the 5K I couldn’t focus enough.
“I would lose concentration and I just didn’t enjoy it as much, so my coach said try steeplechasing, as it gives you something else to focus on with the barriers. It’s an endurance event but it’s a bit more interesting.
“In the summer I will go the qualifier for the Europeans. The European qualifying time is 9m42s and last season I raced 9m39s. If I can race the way I think I can I will actually be able to qualify.”
Miss Lake is part of the Norfolk Sports Academy, which means she gets free access to sports facilities, as well as receiving £500 a year in instalments.
However her biggest aim is to attend the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.
Miss Lake said: “Usually the Olympic qualifying standard range is between 9m40s and 9m45s so I’m in range and I feel like there’s a lot more in me if I can just keep resistant and not get injured.
“It’s kind of an athlete’s dream and then it gets closer and closer and you think, maybe I could.
“Maybe it is realistic.”