Pat Sexton of Thornton hasn’t had a decent night’s sleep for weeks.
First there was Wimbledon. Then the Tour de France. Now there’s the Olympics.
But there’s no way she’ll be popping into bed anytime soon.
She’ll stay glued to her television this week as she watches her grandson, triathlete Brendan Sexton, take on the rest of the world.
Sexton – who celebrates his 27th birthday today – will make his Olympic debut tomorrow, representing Australia in the London 2012 men’s triathlon.
But cake and candles will be the furthest thing from his mind as Sexton prepares his swim, bike and run legs to complete the Hyde Park course for what will be the biggest race of his career.
And motivation, if it wasn’t already, will be sky high after watching national teammate Erin Densham claim bronze in the women’s triathlon on Saturday.
Plus there is the terrific amount of support Sexton has received from back home, including grandma Pat, which help make the sacrifices worthwhile.
“This gives me huge satisfaction and a great sense of pride that I’ve been able to get this far representing Maitland,” Sexton said.
Mrs Sexton has been flying the “flag” – a bed sheet – from her front verandah since day one of the Olympics.
“I always knew Brendan would achieve something great,” Mrs Sexton said yesterday.
“Sport is his life.
“Brendan was a very good cross-country runner when he was at school. Both he and his sister Melanie [also a world-class triathlete] are very talented.
“I’m so proud of all my grandchildren,” the grandmother of 10 and great-grandmother of six, said.
Mrs Sexton has been watching fellow Maitlander, Simon Orchard and the Kookaburras, all week and said she was equally proud of him.
Sexton has posted an image of his grandmother’s decorated house on his Facebook page.
n See sport for Brendan Sexton’s full interview with Josh Callinan in London for the 2012 Olympic Games.