Kitum promises to be careful not to repeat Barcelona mistakes
Kenya’s Olympic Games’ 800m medal hopeful Timothy Kitum yesterday admitted having learnt his lessons from the recent World Youth Championships in Barcelona. He said unlike the youth championship, where he blew away a chance to win gold and instead settled for silver, he will be more careful and focused this time round. “My target is to make the podium in London Olympics irrespective of the position,” he said.
He said he used the World Youth Championship in Barcelona as a yardstick to gauge his strength ahead of London. “I now know the areas to improve and I am already working on my weakest points. All I want is to make my country proud and that is why I have to come back with a medal,” he quipped. Kitum was a strong favourite in Barcelona but complacency denied him the chance for glory as Botswana’s Nigel Amos stole the limelight by winning gold. “I miscalculated in Barcelona by allowing Nijel Moses of Botswana to go with 300m left. At the semis, he appeared injured and I thought I would take advantage. But his sprint in the final caught me by surprise though I am happy to have won silver. I’m sorry for not bringing home the gold medal,” he noted .
Kitum said he will not be holding anything back in London after he blundered in the final lap at the World Youth event in Barcelona. “I have even spoken to my coaches and promised them glory. This is why I am not leaving anything to chance,” he added.
Kitum said it was a dream come true to represent the country at the London Games after coming home second in the trials last month. The youngster beat high profile athletes including former world champion Alfred Kirwa and Boaz Lalang at the trials to join world record holder David Rudisha and Job Chemut in the London Olympics campaign. “I would describe the trials as the race of my life because it was a quality field and I pushed myself hard to finish second, behind Rudisha,” he noted.
Kitum clocked 1:43.94 in the race but thinks he can run even faster at the Olympics. “ I know London will be tough but I will still be targeting an even faster time in London in a bid to go all the way to the podium,” added Kitum. He said training with Rudisha has improved him as a an athlete. “Training with Rudisha in the last couple of weeks has been an eye opener. He has shared with us what to expect at the world stage,” added Kitum.