Brendan Boyce spoke of a ‘traumatic’ experience as he hit the wall in the closing 10k of the men’s 50k race walk in Berlin yesterday.
The Milford man had been a medal contender by the time he passed the 34k marker in fifth place in the European Championships.
Boyce has had an injury-hit year, but only yesterday revealed the extent of his troubles.
That he was diagnosed with a stress fracture in his leg only nine weeks ago makes his very participation, never mind his 19th place finish, all the more remarkable.
Boyce faded over that final 10k having been in the leading group for most of the race until then.
“I’m a medal contender in my head after the last few years and I wanted to prove that,” the Finn Valley AC competitor said.
“I’ve had a lot of problems all summer and i wanted to take something positive out of the race. I just said, ‘I’ll go as hard as I can for as long as I can’ and just finish.
“I think if I was 100% I was definitely going to be in the mix. I’ll take that forward to next year and to Tokyo.”
Boyce sees himself as a genuine contender going forward, but called his experience yesterday a ‘traumatic’ one.
He said: “I was diagnosed with a stress fracture in my leg nine weeks ago. Nobody thought I could even race today. If the race was two days ago I probably wouldn’t have raced. The only thing that got me through was knowing it was going to be so tough.
“Even if I went out conservative, I was still going to suffer in the last 15km. So better than go easy and dying, I may as well have a pop, and gain some experience on the way.”Tags: