STRIDE – “I want to be the first Nigerian to win a Diamond League title” – Princess Kara

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Rarely do we find one so passionate about throwing Discus especially in this part of the world, like we’ve done in Princess Kara.

The 200 level English Studies student of Benson Idahosa University, has made some giant leaps in her young career – to the extent she’s now recognised as the best Discus thrower based in the country.

This accolade she sealed after surprisingly winning the event at the 2018 National Sports Festival, thereby becoming the reigning National Junior and Senior Champion in the event.

While so many of her age may consider these huge achievements, Kara doesn’t raise her shoulders high on this; but instead has her eyes set on lofty dreams this year.

Stride got talking to brief about her life, how she trained herself without a coach to win the NSF title, and her massive dreams for the year.

S: You made the 2019 Junior Watch List, how do you feel about this being one of the junior athletes to watch out for this year?

Kara: It feels great to be spotted out among so many juniors here in Nigeria. I’m so honoured.

S: You ended last season as the NSF Champion, how hard did you work to achieve this?

Kara: It was really an up and down moment for me during the NSF, because not having a coach to train with was the worst thing that happened to me. But I worked hand in hand with my senior Austin Nwoye, and the result turned out well in less than two months of training.

S: That’s great. Congratulations once again.

Kara: Thank You.

S: What are your aspirations and goals for 2019?

Kara: Competing with elite athletes all over the world, especially my role model Sandra Perkovic.

S: And your biggest career stride so far, the biggest impact you’ve made in your career?

Kara: It’s so funny because even when I went to my coach in Delta State and told him I wanted to throw, everyone laughed at me saying with this slim body you want to do what? But here I am today. Even though I am not known all over the world, I left the mark at NSF, of not giving up no matter how bad the situation may look. With what you are, you can get what you want, just work towards it.

S: You have African Juniors, World Championships and African Games this year. Which are you looking forward to most to qualify and represent Nigeria in?

Kara: All of them. It won’t be bad if I have my greatest season this year.

S: You’re the best Discus thrower within the country. How much do you think you need to improve to achieve all these?

Kara: So much. I have a lot I’m still lacking and with that put together, it will be a massive stride not just in my career but also in my life.

S: So we should be expecting a 50m throw from you in 2019?

Kara: Over. With the right mentality, technicality and physical strength, I will go over it.

S: What’s your PR, what year did you throw this and at what competition?

Kara: My PR is 44.82m, threw this in 2017, at AFN All Comers in Port Harcourt. Since then I’ve been consistent at this same distance, which means something big is coming. So the world should be ready for me.

S: How do you stay motivated and passionate doing this event, knowing fully well this is not one of the strengths of Nigeria in world athletics?

Kara: I go to bed throwing Discus, I wake up throwing Discus, I walk throwing Discus. I don’t see any physical thing that can keep me happy than Discus, and so I aim to enjoy every bit of it. Another is that when I check d history book of Discus women, I can’t seem to place Nigeria in top 50. So for that reason I want to make the mark not just on the list, but also being the first Nigerian to win a Diamond League title. It will require more than hard work; it needs grace work too.

S: Finally, what’s your request to AFN in order to make your dreams come true and succeed in this event.

Kara: I need AFN’s support in all areas. I need the Discus event to be part of Golden League. I want them to treat the throwers same as the sprinters. That’s all I ask.

S: Thank you for your time.

Kara: You are welcome.

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