Haughton backs sprinters Taylor and Bloomfield
Durable and consistent during his days on the track, World and Olympic 400-metre bronze medallist Greg Haughton will surprise you when you ask him about his hopes for Jamaican track and field for the future. Remarkably, his good wishes go first to...
Durable and consistent during his days on the track, World and Olympic 400-metre bronze medallist Greg Haughton will surprise you when you ask him about his hopes for Jamaican track and field for the future. Remarkably, his good wishes go first to our men in the 100 metres.
“First and foremost,” he began, just after a Jamaica Track and Field Coaches Association meeting in Kingston on November 22, “I hope that the male sprinters actually get it together for 2023,” he said.
Joyful about the progress by World Championships finalist Oblique Seville and NACAC 100m title winner Ackeem Blake, and the speed of 2011 World Champion Yohan Blake, he continued, “You see what they did this year. Coming over to 2023, I think, as they mature, we can expect a lot from them.”
Chief Executive Officer of his Haughton Mentoring Group, the 1999 Pan-American Games winner added, “I always say, though, that one should invest in their minds because in order to have a champion that can endure, you must make sure that the mind is at its best.”
Now 49, Dr Haughton turned to his event and the prospects for big-meet finalists Christopher Taylor and Ackeem Bloomfield.
“I always liked Chris Taylor. One of the things I saw with him is that he is a warrior, and he always gives his best; and I think that as he matures, I think he’s learning a whole lot about the game,” the five-time World Championships finalist said about the former Calabar High School team captain.
In a review of Taylor’s performance at this year’s World Championships, Haughton said: “He was pacing himself perfectly through the rounds. I think that as he gets older and stronger, he’s going to be more consistent in terms of his race strategy. I think his confidence is coming back, and once he’s at that high level of confidence, he’s going to execute and surprise himself and even his country.”
Taylor was in last year’s Olympic final as well.
Regarding Bloomfield, Haughton remarked, “I’ve always said that Ackeem is one of the best, based on his height and his length. There are some things that he needs to work on in order to be that complete 400m runner. Time will tell. I personally am wishing him the best, and I hope he can overcome some of the setbacks and challenges that he faced for the last few years.”
The former Kingston College captain has suffered through injuries and family tragedy since he reached the 2019 World final.
“It doesn’t matter how talented you are physically, it really comes down to your mind. It comes down to your race strategy. It comes down to discipline. It comes down to how strong you are in terms of overcoming your fear,” he urged.
“I hope that his coach can get the best out of him,” said the 2000 Olympic bronze medal winner, “because if he’s at his best, he can be a force to be reckoned with.”