Series20 Sep 2011


For Hooker, Daegu experience not as devastating as it might appear – IAAF Online Diaries

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Steven Hooker of Australia prepares during the men's pole vault qualification round during day one - WCH Daegu 2011 (© Getty Images)

20 September 2011Watching the World Championships final wasn’t as painful as you might imagine for Steve Hooker, but it did fire him up for next year, the Olympic champion writes in his latest IAAF Online Diary.


“Watching the final of my event go on without me in Daegu was a funny experience, because I knew I wasn’t ready to be out there competing.


“It wasn’t as upsetting as you might think, because I knew that I wasn’t ready. Especially with the quality of the guys in the final – five at 5.85 - I don’t think I was in that shape. So it was nice being able to watch it, watch some guys who have been jumping well all year and some up-and-comers as well.


“It wasn’t too painful to watch, but what it did make me feel was I wanted to be out there with them. I’m ready to go back to Australia, get into my training and start working on my jumps as much as I can.


“The focus for me now is going to be competing well in the Australian season, putting up some good heights, getting my rhythm back. After that it’s that final preparation for the final run-in to London.


“I always try to jump high in Australian season. Except for last year, when I was injured, I have. I jumped six metres during the Australian season in 2010 (in Doha), 5.95, 5.90, so I normally do jump high. I’ll go back with the aim of jumping high in the domestic season rather than having to do it all in Europe.


“I’m writing this from in Brussels, during the Samsung Diamond League final. Originally, I planned to compete here, but after the way things turned out in Daegu, I had to re-assess that plan. I decided to put an early end to the season, have my break earlier and get back to training earlier. I didn’t think there was much to gain by extending the season.


“As for Daegu, I’m trying to forget it. When I look back on the preparation it was a lot of hard work and not a lot of good time. So I’ll just try to forget it and take positives out of it. The big positive for me is that I’ve finished the season healthy and I start my preparation healthy. I haven’t done that in a long time.


“I’m just now looking forward to next year, getting a lot jumping in training, getting my rhythm back – that’s the key thing for me.


“With pole vault qualifying on the first morning, I didn’t have anything to do but watch the athletes. I really enjoyed that. The first time it felt like a world championships was the first session I went to at night.


“It was an exciting world championships, but also strange given some of the results. There were unexpected winners, unexpected medallists, and I think because of that it was a great world championships. Things rarely went according to the script.


“I really enjoyed Korea. The local organisers and people of Daegu were really friendly and that made it a really pleasant time for me, even if my result wasn’t that pleasant.


“As captain of the Australian team one thing that pleased me was the good result from our throwers. We had four throwers in the team and all of them made the final. They’re still a young group of athletes, that’s a really good core group of athletes looking towards London. It augurs well for the throws and augurs well for the team.


“Our three medallists were really good as well. Jared (Tallent, 50km walk) had a really solid result off a tough preparation.


“I’ll be heading home in the first week of October. I intended to be competing up to (Brussels), so I’ve already had a couple of weeks off and I’m already in the gym every second day, so I’ve got a bit of a head start. It’s nice to have a two week lead-in where I’m not meant to be training but I’m able to get some easy stuff done getting my body prepared for hard training.


“Bring on 2012.”


Steve


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