Hannah compensates for Beijing misery

Hannah Craig from Armoy and supported by SINI during her canoe slalom, Kayak single heats, in the 2012 London Olympic Games at Lee Valley White Water Centre.

Hannah Craig from Armoy and supported by SINI during her canoe slalom, Kayak single heats, in the 2012 London Olympic Games at Lee Valley White Water Centre.

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Hannah Craig will charge down the course at the Lee Valley White Water Park having already accomplished her goal of making the semi-finals in the women’s K1 canoe slalom.

Under pressure in the heats on Monday as she looked for a top 15 finish she produced a superb second run to finish up 14th.

“The course changes completely on Thursday, you can only go on feelings and lines and reactions from the heats so now I’ll go back and go over my runs, the lines and try and re feel it,” she explained.

“It’ll be a completely different race and plan so I’m going to be have to be ready to adapt and not do anything stupid.”

Ten paddlers will move on to the final and as the heats showed on this very difficult course anything can happen.

“You don’t know until you cross the finish line so I will stick to my plan and just do the best I can. It has been a hard journey for me to get here but I wouldn’t change it and it is one that I am very proud of,” added Craig.

“The struggles along the way are tough but they make you appreciate it so much more when you get here and realise what you have and what you have achieved.”

Craig, from Armoy, just missed out on qualifying for Beijing four years ago but is making up for lost time by enjoying the whole Olympics experience.

“I personally feel that if I had of made it four years ago, I wouldn’t have been mentally ready to deal with the event, there is a lot going on and a lot of excitement and its very important to stay focused and for us to keep it as simple as possible,” she said.

“It is exciting to be here but I am not here to spectate, I am here to compete so I need to stay grounded and remember that.

“When you don’t make an Olympics, you think that it is going to be even more special than you could ever imagine but in fact this course is very special to me even without the Olympics and with the Olympics makes it even more so.

“I’m just happy that people are getting to see my sport and see what I do and I can share it with them.”