FORMER Mid-Worcestershire Labour Party General Election candidate Helen Russell is to return to international quadrathlon competition at this year’s European Quadrathlon Championships.
Russell is the current World Middle Distance champion in her age group and also the overall British champion and British Trophy Series winner – national titles she has held for three years in a row.
However, over the winter she stopped training and turned her attention to campaigning for the seat of Mid-Worcestershire MP.
The decision to return to international racing was made at a recent warm weather training holiday in Benidorm but it is unclear what impact the break in training during the election will have had on her fitness.
Russell explained: “With the General Election taking place, I was not able to do any proper training as I wanted to focus fully on the campaign. Therefore, I have to be realistic about what is possible.
“I would love to add the European title to my world and British titles but am not going to put too much pressure on myself.”
Russell will combine her training for the European Championship with continuing to be involved in local community campaigning and activism, including in the local Labour Party and trade union movement.
“Although I am returning to racing, I am still committed to continuing to work to reduce poverty and help those in need and will continue to campaign for a society that is based on the principles of fairness and opportunity for all,” she added.
“This means I won’t be training as much as I have in previous years, so this will inevitably have some impact on my results. It will be interesting to see what is achievable on a reduced training volume.”
The European Championships will take place in May in Brigg, Lincolnshire, and will see the continent’s best quadrathletes compete over a 1,500m river swim, 7km kayak, 38km bike and 10km run to be crowned European champion.