Gymnastics world champion Joe Fraser believes the ‘ping’ of social media will play a prominent role in his potential success on Olympic debut at this summer’s rescheduled Games.
The 22-year-old is among Team GB’s medal hopes for Tokyo after he added European pommel horse bronze in April to his parallel bars world title from two years ago – a feat that saw him become only GB’s third ever global gymnastics champion.
But while Covid-19 restrictions mean parents Yvonne and Adrian won’t be able to take their usual place on the sidelines in Japan, Fraser is clear he will do his best to keep them at the centre of the action.
And with the likes of his sister Rachel and girlfriend Tia having played a significant part in his journey behind the scenes as well the Birmingham native is determined to use their support as fuel for individual and team success.
“I love a good FaceTime, and I’ll be showing my mum and dad around the athletes’ village as soon as I arrive,” said Fraser, who is working with Purplebricks to encourage the nation to get behind Team GB on their journey to Tokyo.
“My whole family have been with me all the way and I want them to feel as much a part of it as I do. Tia’s getting more and more used to it – she’s still learning what the skills are called and why one routine scores more than another, but she’s getting there!
“I’ve always dreamt of being an Olympian and this is the closest I’ve been. I’d love the team to go out there and fight for a medal, and I think I’m with a shout of a podium place in the individual events too.”
Despite being eager to make his Olympics debut Fraser believes the enforced postponement due to Covid-19 acted as a boost to his podium prospects, with his recent European gong also representing a key step in his preparation.
And though the restrictions suggest Tokyo 2020 will be unlike any previous Olympics the former Sandwell Academy student is excited to play his part in a unique event he reckons will bring the whole world together.
He said: “I was devastated when the Games were pushed back, but on reflection I’ve had extra time to work on the finer details and upgrade on certain apparatus, so I’d argue it’s improved my chances of success.
“The Olympics is the pinnacle of a lot of sports, of which gymnastics is one, and that won’t change. Every competition is different so I’m used to being flexible and having to adapt to what’s in front of us.
“I feel very lucky to have been able to train during the pandemic, and I want to give something back to the country now. Hopefully I can show everyone what I’ve been working hard on, and bring some smiles and joy to peoples’ summer.”
Joe Fraser is working with Purplebricks to encourage the nation to get behind Team GB on their journey to Tokyo, with the same amazing home support as London 2012. Visit @PurplebricksUK. To enter the draw to receive one of 2,020 limited edition prints, visit here