Tokyo Olympics 2020: Kiwi athletes living together in pursuit of dream

With the Tokyo Olympics on the horizon, athletes around the country are stepping up their preparations in attempts to qualify. 

For the countries' top Javelin thrower Ben Langton Burnell that preparation meant putting his career on hold in pursuit of his Olympic dream.

Langton-Burnell's gone all in, giving up his job as an accountant to focus on the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. 

"The further up I got with my sport the harder it became," he told Newshub.  

So far, his decision to quit his job is one that's paying off. 

"I'm pretty confident with all the backing that I've got at the moment and being able to fully commit to it I'll be able to get there," he told Newshub. 

Also helping him along the way are three other athletes pushing for a spot in Tokyo.

They live together in Cambridge and are prospering from living in close quarters.  

"I really love it you're surrounded by like-minded people and athletes every day," track cyclist Ellesse Andrews told Newshub. 

"It was a massive change for me," Kayaker Kurtis Imrie added.

"I came from Wellington to Auckland and now I'm based in Cambridge. I've learned a lot just being around professional athletes," Imrie told Newshub.  

As much as they're focussed on Olympic selection they admit it's not all full throttle.

Living together provides a valuable escape from the demands of professional sport.

"It's nice to come home and not talk about sport and remember that we are people and not just athletes," Rower Kelsi Walters told Newshub. 

But with trials around the corner, there'll be a sharp focus on training.

With any luck, this household of the country's top athletes will be paddling, peddling and throwing on sport's biggest stage next year.



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