European debut an experience to savour for Parkes in Berlin

Parkes now wants to take on the best in the world. Pic: Ben Booth Photography

The taste of the World Para Athletics European Championships has left Birmingham athlete Javaughn Parkes hungry for more after an admirable maiden senior meet.

Parkes was making his debut in Berlin this week and put in a strong performance in the T36 100m, stopping the clock in a personal best time of 12.75 seconds.

It wasn’t enough for a European medal, finishing in fifth place, but his Championships has been about far more than the end result.

The next Paralympic Games is two years away and an obvious aim for Parkes, relishing the chance to wear the British vest alongside the very best once again.

“It’s a personal best so I can’t complain, but I am gutted that I didn’t get a medal. I am just happy to PB,” said Parkes, who has cerebral palsy.

“It’s such a surreal feeling competing – it’s really hard to explain. It’s a great experience and I would love to do it again. It’s just a shame I didn’t get a medal.

“It makes me hungrier so hopefully next time I can get something. I’ve learnt so much from this, the lifestyle, the way you handle yourself and it’s all such a great experience.

“I’m eating healthy, training twice a day – more than I used to – and I feel fit. Hopefully next time I’ll be a lot stronger and I’ll come back for more.”

British Athletics works alongside UK Sport and the National Lottery to support the delivery of success at the world’s most significant sporting events, principally the Olympic and Paralympic Games. They do this via the funded initiative, the World Class Programme, one part of the British Athletics pathway.