The biggest race of Lee Emanuel’s career turned into his most disappointing at the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow.
The middle distance runner from St Leonards could only manage 11th place in his men’s 1,500m heat at Hampden Park Stadium last Friday evening.
He said: “The race was horrible, probably the most disappointing of my career. I was going into the race with the expectation to make the final and was very disappointed to go out, especially the way I did.”
Emanuel dropped well off the pace on the final lap and crossed the line in 3:46.29, some six seconds outside the four qualifiers for the final. The 29-year-old finished behind both Scottish runners and the other English competitor in his heat.
“I had planned with a friend from New Zealand to split the first two laps to try and make the race decently fast and hopefully improve my chances of getting through as it was top four and four fastest losers to advance,” he continued.
“We did not make the race fast enough and then when the race picked up at the bell, I had no leg speed. I’m not really sure what happened as I have been competing well all season and the way the race turned out I feel I should have been able to at least compete better than I did.”
It was Emanuel’s second appearance in an England vest at the Commonwealth Games having run the 5,000m as a reserve in Delhi four years ago.
“The overall experience was a bit weird,” he went on. “I felt sick in the few days before the race so was more worried than excited. Race day I felt great and thought I was in for a good performance. Overall the performance is what I will look back on from the Commonwealth experience so I’m kind of glad it’s over now.
“I am a full time athlete and am not satisfied with just making championships. I expected to perform significantly better than I did so my overall experience was a bad one, but at the same time one that will drive me through the long winter training base.”
Emanuel is racing in a British Athletics League event in Manchester this weekend and will then take part in a two-mile race at the Birmingham Diamond League meeting on August 24.
He said: “I am hoping on getting my form together and getting in some really fast races in the coming month. I’m hoping this race is just a blip along the way. I’ve trained very strongly over the last few months so have to belief I have some big races left this season.”