Sharlene Mawdsley made history when she and her three teammates broke the national record at the European Championships this summer.
Sophie Becker, Phil Healy and Rhasidat Adeleke, alongside Sharlene broke the national record in women’s at 4x400m relay during the event which was watched by viewers across the globe.
And of course, that means that Sharlene’s star is on the rise.
Chatting to VIP Magazine, she confesses that it’s “crazy” to think that she is a role model for young girls just like Sonia O’Sullivan was for her when she was growing up.
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She admits that “of course” it’s an honour for her to be in a position, telling us: “I will do anything I can to keep people in sports. The opportunities I have gotten from sport are amazing.
“Just to be someone’s role model, it means a lot. I grew up with such important role models in the sport, if they can do it, why can’t I?”
She goes on to admit that she almost fell into athletics as a child!
“My brother used to play football and I had to go to every single one of his games. So I turned to my mam and said, ‘I want to do something.’,” she says with a laugh.
“So she brought me down to the athletic track and it all started from there. I had all my friends there and then as I got older it progressed and now it’s my full-time job.”
She tells us as we chat that it’s certainly a pinch-me moment, being able to work as an athlete full-time. Although she adds that she is getting a part-time job at the Peter McVerry Trust as she “wants to give back” as much as she can.
And this year there have been plenty of pinch-me moments for Sharlene, beating a national record is certainly one!
“Obviously breaking the national record with the girls! Whenever women run together it’s absolutely amazing. Those are the pinch-me moments that when you reflect back on it you’ll say, ‘Wow that just happened.’
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“I know it just happened this year but it was amazing. The highlight of this year was being on the relay. It’s great when you get to run together rather than compete.”
Sharlene was speaking to us ahead of World Hunger Day where with the help of over 100 volunteers, Zambrero Ireland aims to pack 30,000 nutritious meals which will be donated to people in need in developing countries.
She tells us she got involved to raise awareness around the subject: “I think it’s more just being aware is the most important thing. We hear about World Hunger Day but not much is done about it. But now people are learning about it they are getting involved, which is vital.”
Zambrero’s first-ever meal-packing event aims to pack 30,000 nutritious meals which will be donated to people in need in developing countries this World Hunger Day