What do I have to do to go to RIO in 2016? (Besides run fast) Must I compete in a certain amount of races or wwhat?
- Mokoka makes Marathon Majors debut in Tokyo
- Park’s 68 puts her two shots clear at SA Masters
- Banyana get right into training regime in Reunion
- Future speedsters strut their stuff at Green Point
- Garcia tames wind to share the lead at SA Women’s Masters
- Skhosana starts his 2017 season in France
- Birkett spearheads big field for Drak Challenge
- Olympian Barrow chooses SA over Australia
- Prinsloo starts 2017 with another payday
- Junior Bok star Davids gets Blitzboks call-up
Paralympian Fourie’s silver indoors debut
- Updated: January 29, 2014
London Paralympics medallist Arnu Fourie has medalled in his first ever indoor athletics event, writes Mark Etheridge.
Stellenbosch’s Fourie, who won bronze in the 100-metre T44 event in London two years ago, was taking part in the Glasgow International Match at the Emirates Stadium in Scotland.
The amputee sprinter raced the 60-metre dash where he blitzed across the tape in 7.35, good for second spot behind American Richard Browne (7.25).
“It’s called the Glasgow International Match because all the athletes competed for a specific team,” Fourie told Road to Rio 2016 this week. “The four teams that battled it out were America, Scotland, Great Britain and Northern Ireland, and then the Commonwealth countries.”
Fourie, right, was the only South African to take part in the event and speaking of his indoor debut, he was upbeat. “It was my first race ever on the indoor circuit and I enjoyed it very much. The stadium was packed and the vibe was great.
“I felt I had a solid start and the execution for the rest of my race was goodÔÇª a good way to get the 2014 season up and running.
“The surface was the normal tartan and the track itself is very much the same as outdoor but the vibe is just totally different. Also, the focus is so strong on your start in the 60m, because if you don’t get out well your race is over.
“My training for the last four months was heavily focused on my starts. I’m not really preparing for the 60m, but am working on my start because we felt that was one of the areas of my running that still needed a lot of improvement so this obviously help me to be in some sort of form for the 60m this time of the season.”
Fourie also brought back a gold medal from the Paralympics as he was part of the 4x100m relay team but this year is a relatively quiet year on the para-athletics scene and will be one of foundation and building.
“For me this year comes at the perfect time. I did not have the best of seasons in 2013 where I had a couple of injuries and struggled to get to full fitness for the main competitions. This year has no significantly big races with us ‘blade runners’ not having an event at the Commonwealth Games. My main focus for 2014 is to have a solid injury-free year where I run myself back into contention again. I am keen to work harder than ever and compete in a few more races this season. This way I am sure the results will take care of itself!”
His next event will also be in the United Kingdom, this time in England at the Birmingham Indoor Grand Prix where he again tests himself over 60 metres.
“We normally have a break over December because this is not really season time for us. But I had to change that a bit this year and work really hard through December to be in some sort of shape for the Glasgow race and then the next one in Birmingham.
“But it will only be these two indoor races and then the focus will shift to the outdoors again.”
Proud of you Arnu. Hope to see you in march. I look up to you as I am a 13 (almost 14) year old double amputee myself and aim to be like you one day. I started training extra hard this year and hope to make it to RIO.
Great article on SA's Arnu Fourie - one of the most down to earth 'celebs' with a heart of gold! Well done*