Toni’s going all Hollywood. Sort of. What is happening is that the BBC have made a documentary about his and Jess’ journey from the early days of working together up until the present moment preparing for Rio.

BBC camera crew

I’m both excited and mildly troubled because I’ve been asked to write an article linking to the documentary. In a minor state of self pity I whinge to to Toni that I have a day job and despite the fact it’s a great opportunity to promote the blog, how am I going to write the blog too? Toni’s response is typically pragmatic,

“That’s your piece today”.

“What is?”

“Write about writing the piece for the BBC. Write about the documentary”.

“I hadn’t thought of that”.

“We’ve got loads of photos of the guys with us here and at competition. Just use them”.

“That’s why you’re the coach,” I pause for effect, “Does that make me the talent?”

“If you like”. Just like that. Three words. Feet back on the ground. No messing. I return from my three second daydream of being the next Booker Prize winner,

“What are your thoughts on the documentary then?”

Standard banter while the BBC collect footage

“It was good fun to make. A good team to work with. The main thing for me is that they’re telling the story from the coach perspective. It provides the type of insight I don’t think people see enough”

“What type of insight?”

“It seems every other sports piece you see or read mentions marginal gains. In this documentary people will see it in action. Actual marginal gainers”.

“It seems every other sports piece you see or read mentions marginal gains. In this documentary people will see it in action.”

“Will you watch it?”

Toni’s answer is laced with sarcasm, “You know how much I love watching myself on film.” He pauses and his tone changes, “Actually, yes, I will watch it. In a weird way I’m looking forward to it. It’s going to provide a bit of a cliff-hangar too, the way the story teeters on the edge of us leaving to go to Rio. Lots of anticipation”.

“Like a classic ‘Eastenders’ finale?!”

“Without the drums” (Toni actually mimics a broken drum-roll but I’ve no idea how you’re meant to type that)

I’ll be watching it. Now I’d better go and write that article.

bbc documentary

Jessica Ennis-Hill: A Coach’s Story is broadcast on Saturday 16th on BBC1 at 2.15 pm.