Bebe Dahou has impressed British athletics with her performances in recent Manchester Marathon and Half Marathon races with times of 2 hours 39 minutes and 1 hour 39 minutes. For a young athlete of her age, these times are particularly impressive, and she is now on-track to compete in the Olympic Games, Paris 2024.
Bebe prefers to run over shorter distances however she is displaying a natural talent for the longer distances. By completing the Half Marathon in 1 hour 39 minutes, she has achieved the fastest time for someone of her age group in the Therme Manchester Marathon, which took place earlier this year. People of Bebe’s age aren’t meant to participate in races of these distances because of the potential injuries that could be caused to the body. Because of her age, she had to have lots of medical checks to ensure she was ready to undertake such a distance and then receive after-treatment with the help of her coaches.
Currently Bebe is in training with the Great Britain team in their hubs around Manchester. She commented: “As soon as I finish my A Levels, I will spend a full year training and hopefully I will take part in the 2024 Olympics and compete for Team GB.
“The Team monitors our progress in terms of times, and I am currently ahead of where I need to be for my age and to be ready for the 2024 Olympics. I just need to maintain my performance alongside studying for my A Levels, which are going to be a priority for me over the next few months.
“Our coaches normally schedule races during holiday periods but to qualify for the half marathon I had to request time off from the College. When the College realised the times I was running, the Principal, Mr Knowles, wanted to support me by allowing me time off from my studies but also by buying two sets of running shoes to help me in my training. The College has been brilliant in supporting my running schedule, and the running shoes will help me to run safely and enable me to maintain the competitive times I need to make it to the Olympics in two years’ time.
“I’m focussed on continuing running and competing after I complete my A Levels and, following the Olympics, I want to compete at other major International athletics competitions such as the Commonwealth Games.”
Xaverian Principal, Tony Knowles, said: “Bebe has really impressed us with the progress she has made with her running, whist continuing with her A Levels at Xaverian College. As a runner myself, I can really appreciate the dedication required to run at such a high standard and to achieve times fast enough to impress Team GB and be in the running to compete at the next Olympic Games. We wanted to show our support by giving her time away from studying to prepare for the marathons, but also to support her by providing running shoes for her to use in training and to take part in future marathons. We wish Bebe the best of luck in her running career and I’m sure she will perform brilliantly in future competitions for Team GB.”
As one of the largest providers of post-16 education in the region, Xaverian College offers an extensive range of A Levels in addition to several BTEC courses. Visit xaverian.ac.uk to find out more.