Jim’s Adventures in Turkey Days 3 & 4

Day 3 started with high hopes of running in the stadium and sporting my new numbers in the 100m heats.

Having got to grips now with the air-con unit we managed a good night and decided on a leisurely breakfast and then a chill out in the room for a few hours before heading to the track. 30mins travel time to the track and we check the boards to make sure all good and head to the restaurant for a carb filled lunch of spag bol.

I’m due to race at 5pm therefore be in the call room and 4.45 ready to go. So chill time at the track before warm up in the shade and a slight breeze was on the cards until the time came. All of a sudden we find out the heats have been cancelled due to lack of numbers, and will be run at semifinal time tomorrow morning. Now for those of you who might not be in the know, when the entries are down and there are only to be 2 rounds of races, the norm is to run the 1st round at heat time and then scrap the semifinal and go straight to the final at final time. This is done the world over and is the same wherever you go. Communication with the GB team manager results in him saying that, and I quote: “You run at heat times today. It was agreed at Team Managers Meeting this morning. I will be there in 45 mins.”
By now more and more athletes are arriving and seeing different boards saying different things and basically chaos begins to reign! Athletes all over the place (as this has happened to 3 age groups) not really knowing what exactly is happening. Team manager arrives and says straight away that as it was agreed then it’s run today, and by this time the warm ups need to start. So warm ups start and heads get into the right place and the psychology begins. 2 minutes later it’s off, then 2 minutes after that it’s on again! So still no one really knows what’s going! With less than an hour before I need to be in the call room it’s back on so warm up continues. Finally at 4pm the decision is taken that it can’t go today as some athletes may have noticed it and left and that would cause even more issues tomorrow had it been run.
So the long and short of it is that the day was basically wasted doing not very much and now we have to be at the track exceedingly early tomorrow morning (8.30) to warm up for our heats at a time that shouldn’t even exist!!

Day 4; Turkey belly hit with a vengeance but that didn’t stop an early start and warming up for a 10am start (with a few trips to the gents!!). 3 heats to go ahead and qualifying was the first 2 from each heat plus 2 fastest losers to the final.
Photo finish from my heat in which I came 2nd to qualify by right in 11.58seconds.

Overall I finished with the 4th quickest time from the heats putting in a decent lane for the final.
Having raced at 10.10am we decided we’d hang around until the final at 5.10pm breaking it up with a physio treatment including massage, some lunch and a cheeky sleep! Time ticked by and eventually warm up time came around again. This time with some pasta in the system and feeling a little more human I had a really good warm up and felt I was in a great place to contend for a medal, although I know this event is my weaker and my main aim is the 200m. Call room time comes around and competition face comes into place and focus is there. Led out onto track and set blocks up for final. Announcement over tannoy over competitors and lanes, gave my obligatory little wave to the crowd and then down to business.

From what I can remember after the gun went the race was pretty even for about 60m then there was a splitting of the field. Eventually I came 4th with a Portuguese athlete winning in 11.22s and Great Britain coming 2nd, 3rd and 4th. Overall results and photo finish pic below:

In retrospect, having to deal with Turkey belly and basically knocked for six by it and in my weaker event I was extremely happy with the race and felt I did all I could under the circumstances. I ran an electronic seasons best time so things are looking good for the 200m which begins on Thursday.

Now I have a few days rest to try and heal up and I think bread and dried toast is the only thing I’m eating for at least the next 24hrs and a trip to the chemist tomorrow should sort me out.