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'Everyone in Trelawny is proud right now'

PROUD: Olympic bronze medallist Warren Weir and his mum Celese Clarke. Pic: The Gleaner/PA

IF YOU tried to get Celese Clarke immediately after her son Warren Weir took bronze in yesterday's (AUG 9) 200m final, it would have been difficult.

"After the race I was just on the ground, the phone was ringing but I wasn't answering. The first thing I had to do was give God thanks. We prayed before the race so we have to give Him thanks because Warren is coming from far," she said.

Weir sustained a serious injury in 2009 and Clarke said some doctors weren't sure he would walk again. Now he's an Olympic medallist.

"He's my baby. He's the youngest," she said with a proud smile, pointing to photographs of her two older children.

"I don't know if I'm on top of the world or what, but I'm very happy and very proud," Clarke added. She said she was confident Weir would get a medal, even though he only took up the 200m last year.


Olympic 200m gold medallist Usain Bolt with silver medallist Yohan Blake and bronze medallist Warren Weir after their win at the Olympic Stadium in Stratford, east London on Aug 9

"Him say, 'Mommy, I have this. So mi jus' a go hard and done'. So I know him have it," she laughed. "You see when you want something, you have to go after it, as we say, 'you want good, yuh nose haffi run!'"

Clarke said "negative people" had much to say about Weir in the lead-up to the Olympics, including whether he would be able to succeed at London 2012.

"I told him to put it (his response) on the track because what God has for you, nobody can take away from you," she said, adding that she was also proud of Usain Bolt and Yohan Blake. Clarke didn't only watch the race with her sister at work, she practically ran it.

"Oh yes, I was running, why not?" she joked, remembering especially the last 70 metres, as American Wallace Spearmon and Churandy Martina of the Netherlands closed in on her son. But Weir held on. Despite his success now though, she's not sure if she wants him in the relays.

"I was just focusing on the 200 metres. I never really want them to pressure him for any relay because I wanted him to do what he qualified for," she said. Clarke said she would definitely be hosting something for him when he returns in September, after he completes his Diamond League meetings.

Weir, like the sprint legend Bolt, was also born in Trelawny, the tiny district of Refuge to be exact.

"Everybody in Trelawny is very proud right now," she said.

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