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Coertzen closes 2015 season with cracking victory in France
- Updated: September 22, 2015
By Mark Etheridge
London 2012 Olympic decathlete Willem Coertzen has at least 10 reasons to be happy after an excellent victory in the 39th Decastar event in Talence, France at the weekend.
It was the final IAAF Combined Events Challenge of the season and a pumped up Coertzen will put his feet up in Potchefstroom, confident that his road to Rio and the 2016 Olympics is on track.
The South African’s total tally was 8187 points and he received some excellent prize money for not only winning the competition, his first IAAF World Challenge victory, but also coming fourth overall in the 2015 Combined Events Challenge.
His earnings will go a long way to financing his build-up to Rio. ‘I need to invest in my myself and this competition was good… but hard work as the body is very tired after world championships in Beijing. I went through a bit of a dip there but I held on and managed to pull it through,’ he told Road to Rio 2016.
‘It’s always a great atmosphere at this competition. Another plus was a personal best 4.65-metres in the pole vault but there’s a lot still in the bank. I could feel that.
‘The other events were all just solid and I did just what was needed, especially in the 1500m – I just jogged around as I didn’t need to do any more and the body was falling apart a bit.
‘It’s been a really long year, mentally and physically.
‘The prize money will help me survive next year and keep my dream alive. Now I’m resting for six weeks or so, shutting down the engines and spending some time relaxing with the wife and kiddies.’