Rebecca Zelic

Name: Rebecca Zelic (Some call me Oluchi)

Age: 19

Club: Herne Hill Harriers
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Coach: Chris Zah

Event/s: 100mH and 400mH

Personal bests: 14.56s & 65.60

How did you first get involved in athletics?

When my primary school teachers detected my talent in long jump and suggested me to do athletics and I started when I was in Secondary school, age 13. Sprint hurdle wasn’t until I was about 14. I wasn’t a serious athlete till I was 18 when I started training 5-6 times a week.

Who has been your biggest influence in athletics and why?

The coaches Linford Christie and Chris Zah, they made me become a better performance athlete. Linford trained me in 2012, that’s when I started taking athletics serious and later on in that year I moved to train with Zah at Mile End as Brunel university (where Linford coaches) was too far for me and I was still at college.

From the beginning of 2012, I trained with Linford Christie at Brunel University in north west London.  As I live in south east London and, at that time, it was my first year at college, i found myself falling behind with work due to tiredness from training and travelling.  Just before my second year, I moved to train with specialist hurdles coach, Chris Zah at Mile End, close to my home

What, so far, has been your biggest achievement in athletics?


I won bronze in 100mH at my 1st Deaf competition with GB, the Deaf European Outdoor Championships in Keysere, Turkey in 2011


I won bronze in 60mH in 2012 Deaf European Indoor Championships in Estonia.

Got selected to triple jump for London at English schools and came 8th out of 17.

Got asked to compete in Italy for my club and won the female best sport performance.


Got selected to compete in 100mH at the Sainsbury’s British Championships at the Alexander Stadium, Birmingham.

Going to represent Great Britain in the Deaflympics.

What are your aspirations for the forthcoming Deaflympic Games in Sofia?

My aspirations would be,

  • Greet deaf athletes from all over the world and learn their deaf culture
  • Break the 100mH record
  • Come home with a medal

What advice would you give to Deaf athletes who want to get involved in athletics?

I would suggest them to join their nearest athletics club. Or tell them which coach they should go to (depends how serious they are and if they live in London)

Can you tell us a funny story about yourself that no-one else knows about you?

Errr, here figuring with my finger nails thinking what funny story they should know about me, most of them are rather embarrassing!

I’m sure every athlete have done this, every time I visit a new track, and during my stretching sessions I would do a stretch where I can get my nose close to the track ground and take a big whiff to know the smell without making an obvious! Almost every track has its own smell, my favourite track smell is the track I raced on in Florida. Smells fresh.