Housewife wins seat at Olympics

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A HOUSEWIFE from Mildenhall is celebrating after becoming one of the first people in the world to get tickets for next year’s London Olympics.

Claire Golema, who used to watch world and Olympic champion Victoria Pendleton cycling at Mildenhall about 15 years ago, won a pair of tickets as part of a draw by London 2012 partners Lloyd’s TSB.

Now the mum-of-two, who is friends with Victoria’s older sister Nicola, is hoping to cheer her on to gold at the Olympic Park Velodrome.

“I would really love to go see Victoria race. I’ve only been to watch her at Mildenhall, probably when she was about 14 or 15 years old.

“The cycling tickets will be the hottest ones but I also follow gymnastics, as I used to do it when I was younger, and it would be great to see Beth Tweddle compete,” said Claire.

A former member of the Fen Gymnastic Club for Girls, Claire met Victoria and her sister Nicola through Mildenhall Cycling Club which Claire’s father is also a member of.

The 36-year-old had not bothered trying to bid for tickets online as she did not think she could afford them. “I just thought I couldn’t afford it – I won’t go,” she said.

Now Claire and husband Billy, an aircraft engineer, will be going see one of the 26 Olympic or 20 Paralympic sports after Claire was just one of just 500 people worldwide drawn at random by Lloyds TSB’s trackside customer programme. Their children Nadine, 11, and Carys, six, meanwhile, will have to watch at home.

So far, Claire has received a letter informing her that she has won tickets– she is yet to find out for what event.

“I am really happy because I don’t usually win anything. It is a bit of a surprise but I can’t wait to get hold of them and then plan to go,” said Claire.

“It will be a nice day out. I’ll probably never go to the Olympics again and it is something that I will remember. I just hope I get to see something interesting and not sailing.”