European 400m Champion Matthew Hudson Smith spoke recently about what Black History Month meant to him, and also which British black athlete is most inspirational to him.
What does Black History Month mean to you? And what history do you want to create in the sport?
It means a lot. As a black athlete, it means I can inspire other black athletes to take the stage and represent themselves.
I want the whole set – and when I say that, I’m not just meaning gold, any medal will do. I know it will be hard as there are a high calibre of athletes in my event but winning a medal is where it is at, and that represents the journey.
Off the track, I want to inspire a whole new generation of athletes. there are loads of people back home in Birchfield that don’t have the same opportunities that I did and don’t have the same support networks. I want to provide that to people moving forward, and I feel blessed to be in a position to actually do that. I want to help people try and achieve what I have achieved.
Who is your top British black athlete of all-time?
I say it time and time again, but it has got to be Chrissy O [Olympic, world, European and Commonwealth champion Christine Ohuruogu], she is the GOAT. I have other heroes like Linford (Christie), Denise (Lewis) and Kelly (Holmes), but Chrissie did my event. I call her Granny O which might be quite cheeky. She is inspirational not just to me, but everyone on the team.
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