Former World 100m champion wants to run PBs at all sprint distances this year – including 400m, writes Cathal Dennehy
Tyson Gay is injury-free ahead of the 2013 track and field season and has targeted PBs at all sprint distances this year.
“I think I’m going to go one, two and four this year,” he says. “I want to PB in all of them, to improve all those times. That’s my goal.”
Gay is joint-second on the 100m all-time rankings with 9.69 and is still the only athlete in history with a sub-10 100m, sub-20 200m, and sub-45 400m to his name.
Hampered by chronic pain for much of 2012 following hip labral surgery in July 2011, the American made the decision to focus exclusively on the 100m for the Olympics, where he finished an agonising fourth in 9.80 before earning his first Olympic medal when taking silver in the 4x100m relay.
In addition to his 100m best, which was set in 2009, Gay has run 19.58 for 200m and 44.89 for 400m. And many will be intrigued to see how he fares over 400m, although he only plans to contest the one-lap event early in the season, and hopes to contest the shorter sprint distances at the IAAF World Championships in Moscow in August.
Gay, who is based in Clermont, Florida, and is coached by Jon Drummond and Lance Brauman, was in Ireland recently to visit renowned sports injury therapist Anthony Geoghegan, and was in a positive mood about his health as he looked forward to the season ahead.
The 30-year-old said he was “very impressed” by the Irish physical therapist, and learned much during his time there which he feels will be crucial in keeping him healthy throughout 2013.
“I’m getting a little bit of treatment done, and I’m learning some things,” he says. “I can’t wait to take them back to the States and apply them.
“I’m just trying to stay healthy, taking my life in my own hands, doing what I have to do, the rehab and stuff. I think I needed to stick to the rehab, and not just fix the injury, but do the rehab all the time so it stays fixed.”
Asked if he still struggled with the hip pain which plagued him during 2012, he said: “Slightly, here and there, but it’s a lot better.
“I got through it last year, and I’m feeling a lot better. I should be able to run a lot faster, too.”
David Oliver was with Gay in Ireland and the 12.89 sprint hurdler said he planned to skip the 2013 indoor season but he is healthy and looking ahead to the summer.
On his biggest rival, Olympic champion and world record- holder Aries Merritt, Oliver said: “He had a great season last year, but that was in 2012. It’s 2013 now, so everybody just has to start over with a clean slate.
“I’m not really worried too much about what everyone else is doing, I just have to go out there and attack every race, every training session, so that’s all I worry about.”