Sprints coach Maritim expects several medals from local athletes at the global championships
Kenya National junior sprints coach Andrew Maritim foresees a great outing for his sprinters during the World Athletics Under 20 Championships to be held at the Moi International Sports Centre, Kasarani from August 17 to 22.
Yesterday at the Kasarani stadium, the experienced coach put emphasis on block placement, running on the curves, starting blocks, reaction and acceleration to his athletes who have been in camp for three weeks now.
Maritim is certain that from his 13 sprinters, several medals will crop up during the global Championships expected to bring together at least 128 countries.
“We have worked so much on reaction and technique because those are the minor details that are key in winning sprints. I can confidently say that the athletes have improved from the time we held trials last month,” he told People Sport.
Maritim is aware most of these athletes came to camp while very raw which makes the training program sweet as they are more than willing to be learning new things every day and putting them into practice.
“ You realise most sprinters where meeting the blocks for the first time at Kasarani during the trials, since they are in school and such facilities are not available.
The athletes have also improved on their personal best and now met the qualifying times,” he added.
The introduction of strength training mostly in the gym is another aspect the sprinters are enjoying.
Mixed relay time of Elikanah Kiprotich, Sylvia Jelangat, Joshua Wanyonyi and Kennedy Kimeu were taken through their paces, Maritim saying the athletes are responding well.
“Kiprotich is very good because he is the only athlete who met the qualifying time during the trials, so together with the new inclusions Wanyonyi and Kimeu, the team looks promising,” he added.
Kenyan will also field a 4x 400m team, where Kiprotich a Form Four student at Mogonga high school will also feature.
“I am happy to be working with the team. It is true we have not previously done well in short races but this time, things will be different.
I am pushing my self to be of great help to my teammates in the relays,” said Elikanah.