ATHLETICS: Relaying confidence
DANNY Talbot couldn’t have asked for a better start to the season – and now he is more determined than ever to ensure he pushes on to further success, writes Kevin Fahey.
The 23-year-old Trowbridge Tornado returned home to Wiltshire this week after spending almost two months at a training camp in Florida and then switching base to the Bahamas for the inaugural IAAF World Relay Championships last weekend.
Talbot helped the British squad win the bronze medals in Nassau behind reigning Olympic champions Jamaica and Trinidad & Tobago, running a superb last leg in the heats.
The Trowbridge sprint star was replaced in the final by Dwain Chambers but Talbot’s run in the heats was good enough to give the selectors plenty to think about when it comes to picking a team for the European Championships and Commonwealth Games.
“My split for the last 100 metres was given as 8.93 seconds, which was quicker than Yohan Blake with 9.07,” said Talbot.
“Only Richard Thompson ran quicker in the final, so I was really pleased with that. It was a big opportunity for me to run fast in the heats and I think I proved I can run seriously fast at this level.
“If I can now translate that sort of speed into my 100m and 200m times, then I should be running more personal bests by the end of the season, which is what I am peaking for - that is really encouraging.”
Talbot has already improved his 100m personal best to 10.17 in Florida at the start of the trip and also clocked a very swift 200m in 20.48, which is his second-quickest ever behind his best of 20.45.
Those times have put him fourth and second respectively in the UK Rankings and are also inside the qualifying standards set for the European Championships in Zurich and the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow, both of which Talbot will be looking to contest later in the summer.
But it is the experience of the World Relays that appear to have left the most lasting impression.
Talbot said: “It was absolutely amazing - one of the best experiences of my life.
“The Caribbean crowd were actually incredible. I have never seen scenes like it and it was incredible to be part of that.
“Speaking to Dwain (Chambers), who has been to every championship going in the past ten years or so, he said it was one of the best he has ever been to, so I look forward to doing them again next year.
“Hopefully this will set me up for bigger things in the summer and I can use this as a massive confidence boost.”
As long as his legs have recovered from the event and flying home, the Trowbridge Tornado will be back in action at the Bedford Games this weekend, running the 100m and 200m.
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