What a big week in Budapest! After swimming 55,000 metres in training the week prior I wasn’t sure how I’d go against the best in the world at the European Championships, though I was quietly confident of putting together some solid swims in the 800 and 400 and of course the 4×200 relay. The 800 wasn’t a great swim, I didn’t handle the pressure that well and really tightened up as I just couldn’t relax. The 7th place result was disappointing, and while it was great to get the bronze medal in the 4×200 relay with Jo Jackson, Hannah Miley and Jaz Carlin, I knew we could’ve gone even better if I’d been in top form.
I had a couple of days break between the 800 and the 400. I spent time with my coach Bill Furniss and we both knew I just needed to relax and enjoy my swimming and let the results come. Having great friends around like Jo Jackson was a great help, and I went into the 400 final very happy, relaxed and ready for a tough swim. It was great to win my first European championship and so good to stand on top of that medal podium again.
Other than my own swims, the GB team overall swam brilliantly. To win as many medals as the track and field athletes a few weeks earlier is a great achievement, which really showed the growing depth in our team overall. We’re all really looking forward to the Commonwealth Games in Delhi in 7 weeks time.