Perri Shakes-Drayton was born in Stepney in east London in 1988. She went to school locally and eventually trained in Mile End. Although all of Team GB will have a home advantage this summer, Perri must particularly enjoy the games being right on the doorstep of where she grew up.
Perri excelled in 400 metre hurdles from a young age, winning her first gold medal at the age of 17 at the England Under 20s championships in 2006. She also took the gold at the Senior UK Athletics National Championships in Birmingham last year.
As well as being an Olympic athlete, Perri currently studies Sports Science at Brunel University in London. But whilst studying she has managed to find the time to become a double Bronze medallist at the 2010 European Championship with a new personal best of 54.18 seconds.
Perri has also completed her Level 2 coaching qualification and hopes to pass on her great knowledge and experience in Athletics to young people across the UK. Perri has become an ambassador for McCain Track and Field, which provides young athletes with structured out-of-school athletics competition. Perri is also involved in a campaign by Nike called Make Yourself where she helps gives support to female athletes.
I can’t wait to see Perri Shakes-Drayton this summer. I imagine that the London Olympics will have a special significance to her as an athlete and an East-Londoner.