Australian javelin thrower Kim Mickle (Getty Images) © Copyright
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Personal bests – Kim Mickle

World silver medallist Kim Mickle is among the best in her field and last weekend she won her 10th national title in the javelin.

Here the Australian record-holder talks about some areas of her life that hold great significance.

My greatest rival

I have had many great battles with Sunette Viljoen (the 2011 world bronze medallist from South Africa). She's got two Commonwealth Games titles and I have one, so she is one up on me! All our competitions are generally very close and over the years it is probably about even in terms of wins and losses. I also have had some great domestic battles with Kathryn Mitchell and Kelsey-Lee Roberts.

My best friend in athletics

Dani Samuels (the 2009 world discus champion). At major championships we are inseparable, yet away from that – because she lives on the Gold Coast (east coast of Australia) and I live in Perth (the west coast) – we don't see each other much outside of big events. In fact, during these periods we don't call or message. But when we room together we become inseparable again and manage to pick up the conversation where we left it. As an athlete she trains amazingly hard and is very disciplined, so she is a great motivation.

My best achievement in athletics

Definitely breaking the Australian record (with 66.83m in Melbourne last year) because that was always my goal, even as a young kid. Obviously, I also targeted the Olympic Games and Commonwealth Games, but because you never know what the other girls are going to throw, it is harder to say for sure that you will achieve those goals. To say I've thrown the javelin farther than any other woman in history in Australia is pretty cool.

My greatest indulgence

A combination of coffee and beer. So, liquid! I love coffee and back home in Perth we have incredible coffee. During my off-time from training I do like a beer as well, although because of an athlete’s life and the training demands, I'll drink more coffee than beer and I never drink alcohol if I have training the next day.

My greatest disappointment

It was the London 2012 Olympics. I was in great shape but back then I didn't have the mental skills to cope. I thought I was going to win a medal but I didn't even qualify for the final (Kim finished 17th in qualifying with 59.23m). At the time it was the worst thing to ever happen, but it taught me a lot and made me a better athlete.

The best track venue

In terms of wow factor it has to be the Berlin Olympic Stadium, venue for the 2009 World Championships. I personally didn't throw very well, but I rate it as one the most spectacular I've competed in. It was one of the first blue tracks I'd seen and the stadium was just incredible. As soon as I walked out there, I thought this means something.

The best athlete I've ever seen

Cathy Freeman competing at the Sydney Olympics. I was actually in the middle of the stadium at the time of her 400m final, working as an implement retriever. I was aged 15 at the time. It was by far the most incredible thing I’ve seen in an athletics stadium.

My best throw

At the time I threw it, my second-round throw of 66.25m at the World Championships in Moscow was a PB. To be able to produce my best at a World Championships was awesome. Later in the competition I threw 66.60m, which was pretty epic.

The best pre-competition song

I listen to some crazy heavy (metal) music. The heavier the better during warm up. I like listening to an Aussie band called Parkway Drive.

My greatest weakness

I get bored easily so I find waiting around on competition days a struggle because I like to be active. My other weakness is food and lots of it!

My best other sport

I'm starting to play a lot of golf. Once I hit a ball, it stays hit. It is hard to play regularly because of my training demands and I would like to get more control and consistency in my game. I normally only play nine holes because walking 18 holes and training 14 times a week is hard. My best score is 42 on my local course in Perth.

Steve Landells for the IAAF