London 2012: P&G scheme is just the ticket for athletics coach

London-based athletics coach Samantha Hodges sees her Olympic disappointment turn to elation with 100m final tickets

Despite her long-standing work at Kingston Upon Hull Athletics Club, Samantha Hodges didn’t win tickets for this summer’s Olympics back in June – but now she has the most coveted one of the lot.

With those involved in athletics at grassroots level not given priority in the London 2012 ticket ballot Hodges was among the swathes of people to receive unwelcome news.

Making matters even worse was that Hodges had gone to trouble of planning accommodation and travel in the capital – however her disappointment has since been turned into elation.

Courtesy of P&G, proud sponsors of mums, Samantha has received four tickets not only to watch track and field in the Olympic Stadium but the night of the 100m final where Usain Bolt is hotly tipped to retain his 2008 title.

Hodges has been coaching, 1500m specifically, at Kingston Upon Hull AC for nearly a decade and admits the news, given her athletics background, feels just like something out of a fairytale.

“My son, Rob, and I applied for tickets only for athletics and unfortunately we didn’t get any and we were really disappointed not to get any as I had looked at hotels and planned trains,” she said.

“I was really let down and I know a lot of people felt the same and so to actually get some now makes it even sweeter.

“My son started running for Kingston Upon Hull and I would go along and first I was told to hold a watch and then I gradually got involved.

“I coach middle-distance and go four time a week – Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Sunday – and so it has become a big part of my life.”

Hodges’ coaching commitments will take her to the Olympic Stadium before the Games begin with the BUCS Outdoor Athletics Championships being held there in May.

They will act as the London 2012 test event with Hodges, 49, in attendance as part of the University of Hull however she will get a taste of the Olympic Park before even that.

“I am actually first going in March because my son is doing the Olympic Park Run and then I will go down for BUCS which is the test event,” she added.

“It will be good to see it working properly as it is the test event and see all the inner workings before perhaps appreciating it later when I actually go.”

For more information on how P&G are inspiring people everywhere to say ‘Thank you, Mum’ and to win tickets, click here.

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