After winning gold at the European Indoors in Gothenburg earlier this year, Holly Bleasdale is hoping to emulate that winning feeling outdoors. The 21 year old British record holder had a lot to ponder, after finishing sixth in her home games in 2012, with the possibility of a new beginning with Dan Pfaff over the pond.
Holly’s decision to join forces brought her firstly to Cardiff to train under the guidance of Scott Simpson, where she teamed up with Welsh pole vaulter Sally Peake. Having now attended two training camps in Phoenix at the World Athletic Center, she can reflect on her choice.
‘I’ve changed so much over the two camps I’ve done out in Arizona. I’ve worked harder than ever and worked a lot technically on vaulting and running. I’m stronger, faster and better conditioned than ever before. I’m hoping to follow up my successful indoors with the same outdoors.’ Said Holly about the her training at the World Athletics Center.
Bleasdale has nothing but positive things to say about her new coach Dan Pfaff, and is looking to learn everyday from her new surroundings. Speaking of her new training environment alongside male training partners Steve Lewis, Steve Hooker and Brad Walker. She says ‘it really helps me being around (them) as I’m trying to model my vaulting to be more like a male vaulter’.
‘I’m much more confident in myself now and I have more knowledge about my event. Dan and Scott are always teaching me-which helps me grow as an athlete and competitor.’
Her impressive pole vault resume includes a jump of 4.87m-above and beyond most women in the world. To regain this top mark, however, will be no easy feat. She hopes to see the improvements she’s made in training portrayed in her vault.
The New York Diamond League will be Holly’s season opener. She also plans to compete in Oslo, Team Champs in Gateshead, and London and Birmingham Diamond Leagues.