Webb: I came close to quitting after crash
Kyle Webb has revealed that he came close to quitting athletics while recovering from serious injuries he sustained in a motorcycle accident in 2012.
Webb was aged 17 when his bike collided with a car and wall in Southampton, leaving him with a lacerated liver and kidneys, and a punctured lung.
So extensive were his internal injuries, Webb was forced to take a year off school and admits that had it not been for the support of family and friends he would have given up on a comeback.
It is unsurprising then that competing at the Commonwealth Games feels like a completion of an emotional journey, although the former Berkeley Institute pupil insists he is far from done.
“It’s been a tough road since my motorcycle accident in 2012,” Webb said. “I’ve had a lot of support from family, friends and coaches pushing me on.
“I took the whole year off junior college after my accident. It was pretty upsetting for me and I actually did want to give up at the time. You just have to look towards the future and I just love the sport. I just keep pushing myself to high limits. The work is not done yet.”
Webb, who is in his final year at Purdue University in West Lafayette, Indiana, will open his post-collegiate career on the Gold Coast, where he is competing in the 200 metres.
He believes that competing for a Division I college will stand him in good stead as he prepares to face some of the finest runners in the world at Carrara Stadium in tomorrow’s heats.
“Division 1 is very hard and is a good standard to compete at,” he said. “But competing at the international level for your country — well, there’s a bit more hype to it.
“It’s very exciting and trumps all of the other events I’ve competed at. I’m just taking each meet at a time and searching for bigger and better things.”
Webb, 22, admits he will have to beat his personal best of 20.82sec if he is to advance to the semi-finals.
“The goal is to get past the heats and take one round at a time,” he said. “I’ve been training really hard; I haven’t got any really big aspirations. I’ll just be trying to do the best I can.”
Having fully recovered from ankle issues that hampered his indoor season, Webb feels confident as he prepares to make his bow on the world stage.
He will have a familiar face in his corner in DeVon Bean, the Bermuda athletics coach, who has worked with Webb since he was 12.
“We stay in touch even though I’m away in school,” Webb added. “He checks on how me to see how I’m doing, how I’m feeling.
“He’s a big help, especially mentally. Physically, we both know I’m there.”
Webb hopes to secure sufficient funding to allow him to train full-time in his bid to reach the 2020 Toyko Olympic Games.
“Hopefully I can get support from my country and from outside sources,” Webb said.
“I’ve spoken to my coach [at Purdue] and he said I’m welcome to train here. It really depends on my financial status as to where I go.”
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