• Rio Olympics 2016

Adlington rules out Rio bid

ESPN staff
September 23, 2012
Rebecca Adlington's Olympic days are over © Getty Images

Rebecca Adlington confirmed on Sunday that she will not race for Great Britain at the next Olympic Games in Rio in four years' time.

The two-time Olympic champion from Beijing in 2008 added to those golds with a pair of bronze medals in London this summer. She has now revealed that her medal haul will not be improved in the future.

Adlington, at the age of 23, recognises that swimming is increasingly becoming a young athlete's sport, as shown when she was beaten by 15-year-old Katie Ledecky in London. Four years down the line, the Mansfield swimmer does not believe she could remain competitive.

"Rio is out of reach. I'll be 27 by then and swimming, especially for distance swimmers, is a young person's game," she told the Mail on Sunday.

"If I was a sprinter then I would go to Rio. But I don't have an ounce of sprinting in me."

Adlington also confirmed her 'retirement' from the 800m freestyle discipline, revealing she will only consider competing in the 200m and 400m at the Commonwealth Games in two years' time. However, her participation at both the Commonwealths and next year's World Championships is also doubt.

"If I were to race in Glasgow - and that's an if - then it would be in the 200m and 400m but definitely not the 800m. I'm done with that distance," Adlington said.

"I'd like to be in Rio, though, even if I'm just a fan. Hopefully I can be a bit more than that, like a mentor, or have some kind of official or unofficial role with the British swimming team."

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