Shelly Woods rules out Rio

Shelly Woods
Shelly Woods

Three-time Paralympic medallist Shelly Woods has ruled herself out of September’s Games in Brazil.

The 30-year-old St Annes wheelchair racer has informed UK Athletics that she does not want to be considered for selection for Rio, having won medals at the last two Games in Beijing and London.

The Blackpool Wyre and Fylde AC athlete has already earned track qualifying times for this year’s Games but she told The Gazette: “If I had gone to Rio, I would have been able to get to finals but that would not have been good enough for me.

“I have not been happy with my racing and there have been a few technical issues, which have been letting me down.

“I would not have time to fix them, so I have decided that I will sit this one out and not to pursue any Rio goals.

“I am just not happy with where I am at the moment. I’m a little bit off the pace I would want to be at.

“I am sure I will miss it but I have to do what is right for me.”

Woods said fears about the zika virus had not played a part in her shock decision, which she insists does not signal the end of a racing career that has seen her scale the heights all over Europe and beyond, winning two world championship bronze medals.

She added: “I am not retiring and I have still have my goals. There are still plenty of races I want to compete in. I am just taking a break.”

In 2008 , Woods won Paralympic silver in the 1,500m and bronze in the 5,000m – a hugely controversial race rerun after a mass pile-up in the home straight.

Four years later in London, Woods won marathon bronze.