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Canadian Mitton is preparing for the Paris Olympics after winning the world indoor title

Canadian Mitton is preparing for the Paris Olympics after winning the world indoor title

For Sarah Mitton, the World Championships represent some extra excitement as she prepares for the Olympic Games in Paris this summer.

The Brooklyn, N.S., native won her first world title last weekend with a gold medal in the shot put at the IAAF World Indoor Championships in Glasgow, Scotland. Mitton reset her indoor national record for the second time less than two weeks into the process.

“It's really nice to have a few days to let it sink in. I think in the heat of the moment, it's obviously this really big, exciting moment,” said Mitton, who spent this week in her hometown with loved ones. Just all the hard work and all the people that have been on my journey with me, we're doing the right things and it's all about coming together for us.

“It's important to me to be able to share that with everyone, and I'm so happy that I was able to put this together at the right time, and now, you know, we're creating even more excitement as we head to Paris.”

Mitton threw a season-best 20.22m on her sixth and final attempt to seal the deal after hitting 20.20m on her fourth attempt. She initially reset her previous Canadian indoor record of 19.80 seconds with a 20.08 second finish in Nyhvezdy, Czech Republic, on February 20.

The 27-year-old faced a few other players you know she'll be watching at the Olympics and the win was a morale booster.

“When you beat anyone you compete against on a regular basis, you see the result as like, ‘OK, as if I can do that,’” said Mitton, who is undefeated in five indoor meets this year. He now eagerly anticipates the result for the outdoor season to come. “

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“Paris is obviously the most important, so (for) most of the athletes, that was the focus before that. So when you do that on the day of a big competition, you know everyone did their best to be in the best possible condition for that meet.

Mitton was quick to point out that the Olympics would be a “battle”, admitting that despite the strong competition in Glasgow, there were still “top players” who were not present at the indoor tournaments.

Coach Richard Parkinson said they would return to action on Monday looking to build on Mitton's momentum.

“We saw some great throws and I think the 21m will be a gold medal in Paris,” Parkinson said. “This is what we're working toward. … It's March, we're in pretty good shape, and we've got five months to go.

“It's a good sign, but we have a long way to go. We have a lot of work to do. So physically, I would like to get a little stronger over the next few months and keep that going and I would like to continue the technical development.

Mitton is coming off a 2023 season in which she won her third straight national title in July, and her first world medal with a silver at the World Championships in August and a gold at the Pan American Games in November.

Mitton will now aim to continue building on being a consistent 20m shooter.

“My focus is always on consistency because that's what I think gets you through major tournaments,” she said. “If you can stay consistent and repeat what you do in training every day on the world stage, when you get there it's just another day, so don't hope for another big performance.

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“I thought it would actually take a bigger throw at world indoor level to steal the gold, but when (Germany Yemisi Ogunleye) came up and clocked 20.19 seconds in the first round, that was a moment where you sit back and (think) 'I could have. I still think I can.' Also throw 20 metres, quite easily in competition.

“(And) ‘Now I need to know what I need to do today so I can… just get the 20-metre mark there.’ It just happened to be a little bit further which was great.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published March 8, 2024.

Abdul Hamid Ibrahim, The Canadian Press

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