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Josh Clarke was poised to become the first Australian sprinter to compete in the 100m at an Olympics since Athens 2004.
For the past five years, the 21-year-old from Sydney had been training with his coach, Commonwealth Games gold medallist Nancy Atterton, to prepare himself both physically and mentally to compete against legends of the sport, like Usain Bolt, in Rio.
However, at the 11th hour, Clarke’s Olympic dream came crashing down, with the runner making the agonising decision to withdraw from the Games due to a hamstring injury sustained earlier this year.
“[Being injured] can be a roller-coaster of emotion,” he told WHO, during a special Olympic bodies photo shoot, back when he was still Rio bound. “Your mind is more willing than your body and you want to keep pushing yourself. But sometimes,” Clarke then commented, almost presciently, “you have to accept your body is not ready.”
Clarke is still eyeing sport’s biggest stage—but now it’s Tokyo in 2020.
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