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Last Updated: Tuesday, 20 April, 2004, 06:12 GMT 07:12 UK
Morris handed Olympic boost
Tracey Morris
Tracey Morris has received a double boost as she looks to make the most of her surprise selection for the British Olympic marathon team.

The 36-year-old contact lens optician finished 10th in Sunday's London Marathon to clinch a place in Athens.

She has now been handed 4,000 by race organisers for her training expenses - and has been told she can have time off work to prepare for the Olympics.

It will allow her to train in a warmer climate ahead of this summer's Games.

"All my training has been done before and after work," Morris said.

"I will have to see what happens now in terms of my preparations for the Olympics.

Nobody was more surprised at my time than me
Tracey Morris

"I have spoken to my boss, he had left me a message and they will support me and give me time off work to prepare for Athens."

Morris only took up running seriously 18 months ago in Leeds, where she is now based.

The Welsh-born athlete added: "It still seems like this has happened to someone else. I don't think it will sink in for a while.

"I have had an interest in the sport in terms of the Olympics, but I never felt I would be there.

"You are always in awe of those people taking part in it. The people at the Olympic Games are the elite athletes."




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BBC Sport's James Munro
"From optician to Olympian"




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