Reuben Arthur is the reigning British Universities 100m champion, with a personal best of 10.18. He picked up a silver medal in the relay at the European under-23 championships in 2017.
His training partner Nick Stewart is the England under-20 bronze medallist, who reached the European semi-finals over 200m. We caught up with the duo after training at Lea Valley Athletics Centre.
Q: Introduce yourselves…
Reuben: We’re both sprinters training with Ryan Freckleton.
Q: Who is the best dressed in your training group?
Reuben: It might be him (Nick). It’s either him or Theo (Etienne) because Theo is very swaggy.
Or James Arnott. This is hard. Arnott wears boat shoes, it’s Arnott!
Nick: Yeah, James Arnott 100 per cent.
Q: Who has the best music taste?
Nick: It has to be out of Rechmial (Miller) and Reuben Arthur.
Reuben: I’ll give it to Rech, he’s very diverse, he listens to a lot of stuff I don’t listen to…everything like RnB, soul, hip hop.
Q: What about the worst music taste?
Reuben: I don’t want to get on to her but Laura Clark, just because she listens to a lot of metal, we’re not really the biggest fans of metal. We love her, but it’s just not for us!
Q: What motivates you?
Reuben: I like winning. I don’t think there are a lot of people that don’t like winning. I don’t like to lose, it isn’t fun! The feeling of beating people motivates me, so I want to get better so I can do that more often.
Nick: I would say happiness…like if I’m running a rep or if I have a good race and I’m happy after it…I guess that’s something that defines who I am.
Q: What is your biggest distraction?
Reuben: (Laughs). For me, it’s video games, that’s FIFA or GTA. At the moment, I’m replaying Pokemon.
I wanted to say girls, but my mum might see this, so it’s video games!
Nick: It’s definitely got to be music. I listen to a lot of music…but not the genres you might think. Jazz, soul and I’ve even got into classical music, believe it or not!
Q: What is your guilty pleasure?
Reuben: I’m quite disclipined in life, so if it’s going to be anything it’s got to be sweets.
I eat sweets at a ridiculous rate. I’m currently on day three of my sweet ban and this is like the seventh time I’ve started a sweet ban this year. Soft mints especially, they are my achilles heel and squashies.
Q: What would your mum say about your athletics career?
Nick: My mum would say. (Does high-pitched impression of mum) “Yes, you can run fast.”
She doesn’t really know about athletics like that, she just watches it when it comes on, or if I’m in a race.
Reuben: The day I PB’d, she was ecstatic, she was quite jubilant in her praise of me. She’s seen how hard I’ve worked over the last few years…so I think she’d just say that she’s proud of me…she’s now seeing that things are paying off.
We were watching the world champs and people were running whatever times in the heats and she was saying “your PB is faster than that.”
I was like “it’s a heat, they aren’t really trying to run fast!” She at least understands that I’m getting to the level I want to be at now.
With thanks to Lea Valley Athletics Centre for letting the interview take place