Julz out to star at the Olympic Sta­dium

The Peterborough Evening Telegraph - - Sports - By BOB FRANK bob.frank@jpress.co.uk @Et­bobfrank

DEEP­ING hur­dler Julz Adeni­ran lines up at the Olympic Sta­dium this week­end but he hopes it won’t be for the only time this year.

He goes in the 110m hur­dles as UK Ath­let­ics puts on a pro­gramme of events to run along­side the Bri­tish Uni­ver­si­ties and Col­leges Sport (BUCS) Cham­pi­onships at the Olympic Sta­dium.

It is the first time Adeni­ran will have com­peted at the Olympic Sta­dium but the 23 year-old hopes it won’t be the last time he lines up there this year.

Adeni­ran, bronze medal­list in the 60m hur­dles at this year’s English In­door Cham­pi­onships, re­cently re­turned from a warm-weather train­ing camp in Italy un­der the guid­ance of hur­dling leg­end Tony Jar­rett and he hopes to pro­duce a big per­for­mance in London this week­end.

He said: “Most of the UK’S top 10 with the ex­cep­tion of Andy Turner will be com­pet­ing so who­ever comes out on top will draw first blood in what is a mas­sive year.

“It’s a chance to show some good early sea­son form and I’m look­ing to run well, but of course I hope it’s not the only time I com­pete there this year.”

Adeni­ran was de­lighted with the re­sponse to an ap­peal for peo­ple to help fund his trip to Italy and reached his £1,400 tar­get, and in­deed sur­passed it by £55, thanks to 32 do­na­tions.

He joked: “That £55 cer­tainly wasn’t profit, it prob­a­bly pays for one visit to the os­teopaths!

“I was de­lighted with the re­sponse I got and am grate­ful to The Evening Tele­graph for pub­li­cis­ing my ap­peal and to peo­ple like the Crow­land Show for back­ing me.

“It was a great trip although it was more like a boot camp, it cer­tainly wasn’t a sight­see­ing trip.

“I was train­ing two or three times a day and sleep­ing in be­tween, but it went re­ally well and hope­fully the re­wards will come dur­ing the sea­son.”

Adeni­ran, the high­est-ranked sprint hur­dler in the coun­try not to be earn­ing Lot­tery fund­ing, made his ap­peal on the spon­sume web­site but took a gam­ble to go to Italy be­fore the money was guar­an­teed.

He added: “I took out a loan to fund the trip. I’d al­ready re­ceived enough con­tri­bu­tions to know my flight was paid for and it was a gam­ble but this is such an im­por­tant sea­son.

“Hope­fully a suc­cess­ful sea­son will make it eas­ier to get Lot­tery fund­ing for next sea­son although fund­ing is more help­ful when you’re try­ing to reach the top rather than when you get there.”

Adeni­ran ran his first out­door race of the year at the week­end but any thoughts of win­ning soon fiz­zled out and he had to set­tle for sec­ond place in the Lough­bor­ough Stu­dents BUCS Tri­als in 14.70.

He was run­ning into a strong head­wind but that was the least of his prob­lems as he ex­plained: “It wasn’y re­ally my out­door opener, it was more a race ex­pe­ri­ence.

“The ath­lete in the lane next to me col­lided with me at the sec­ond hur­dle so the race was a write-off.” SPALD­ING sprinter Chris Craig will open his out­door cam­paign at this week­end’s four-day Olympic test event which gets un­der way to­mor­row.

The for­mer English Schools sil­ver medal­list had not in­tended to be­gin his sea­son yet fol­low­ing a virus that cur­tailed his win­ter cam­paign but he ad­mit­ted: “The in­vite came as a bolt out of the blue but when some­one asks if you want to com­pete in the Olympic Sta­dium you can’t re­ally say no, can you?

“I hadn’t planned to open my sea­son this early and be­cause of the train­ing block I’m in at the mo­ment I won’t be as fresh as I’d like go­ing into such a race but the most im­por­tant meet­ing this year will be the Olympictri­als.”

Craig re­ceived an in­ter­na­tional call-up for the Vi­enna Clas­sic in Aus­tria dur­ing the win­ter but was forced to with­draw due to the virus.

“That virus re­ally knocked me for six and it ended my in­door sea­son and caused me to miss a month but I feel as fit as ever now.

“Some peo­ple need three or four races be­fore they feel race-fit but I’m not like that and I feel I’m in shape to run a per­sonal best (PB) at the mo­ment.

“I know from how well I’m train­ing on the track and from do­ing weights in the gym that I’m re­ally fit and if I don’t run a PB this week­end it will be be­cause I’m in a heavy block of train­ing.

“My tar­get this sea­son is to reach the final at the Olympictri­als and when you are in the final any­thing can hap­pen.

“If I’m be­ing per­fectly hon­est I think the Olympic stan­dards (the A stan­dard is 20.55 and the B stan­dard is 20.65 com­pared to Craig’s le­gal best of 21.14 and a wind-as­sisted time of 20.98) are a lit­tle be­yond me at the mo­ment and I’m think­ing more about mak­ing the team for the 2016 Olympics, but I’m look­ing for­ward to this week­end.”

BIG WEEK­END: Julz Adeni­ran hopes to im­press in London this week­end.

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