Jessica Ennis-Hill is a British track and field athlete. She is the current Olympic and world heptathlon champion and the current British national record holder for the heptathlon. She is also a former World and European champion.
Ennis-Hill’s interest in track and field began when her parents took her and her younger sister, Carmel to a ‘Start:Track’ event at Don Valley Stadium in Sheffield, England during the school holidays. She took to the sport immediately and at 10 years old she already had a
near-perfect hurdle technique. At 13 she began training with Toni Minichiello and joined the City of Sheffield Athletic Club. When Ennis-Hill was 14 she won high jump competition and the Sheffield Federation for School Sports Whitham Award for the best performance by a Sheffield athlete.
Ennis-Hill devoted a large portion of her time to training during high school and in 2003 she established herself as one of Britain’s top young athletes at the AAA U20 Championships. She won both the indoor pentathlon and outdoor 100-meter hurdles. She also began to compete internationally, first in the 2003 World Youth Championships in Canada and then the 2004 World Junior Championships in Italy and the 2005 European Athletics Junior Championships in Lithuania. At 18 she won the 60-meter hurdles at the Northern Senior Indoor Championships—her first senior tournament.
Ennis-Hill dominated in track and field over the next few years, she won a bronze medal for England at the 2006 Commonwealth Games in Melbourne, Australia, finished fourth at the World Championships in Japan, and second overall in the World Combined Events Challenge. In 2008 a stress fracture in her right foot meant that she had to miss the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing. She made her comeback in 2009, wiining the world championships in the heptathlon and world indoor pentathlon title the following year.
In 2012 Ennis-Hill competed at the Olympic Games in London, England. She set a British record of 12.54 seconds in the 100-metre hurdles, this was the first event of the heptathlon. 36 hours later she won the gold medal, becoming the new Olympic heptathlon champion. She continues to succeed in athletics.
Ennis-Hill is an ambassador for the Jaguar Academy of Sport and a patron The Children’s Hospital Charity and Weston Park Hospital Cancer Charity and supports Breakthrough Breast Cancer. In addition to her athletics career she is a columnist for The Times newspaper.