This week on Series 16, we caught up with young Welsh sprinter Sam Gordon who has visited ALTIS since 2013 as part of our partnership with Welsh Athletics.
The relationship has flourished since its inception with Welsh coaches visiting the April Apprentice Coach Program (ACP) to help further their coaching knowledge, and a group of athletes training in Arizona for a short-period as part of their preparation for the outdoor season.
“It was my third year out visiting Phoenix,” reflected Sam. “Each year I seem to learn more and this year for sure has been the best experience I’ve had as they have had more world-class athletes join the sprints group.”
“ALTIS has taught me to be relaxed as much as I can and enjoy the sport again. Seeing Andre (De Grasse) and Jahvid (Best) out there and how they apply themselves helps me to look at my races. Andre is particularly calm and cool-headed. I’m able to learn from that.”
“My approach to the season is to enjoy it. I didn’t enjoy last season and I think it affected how I ran. This year I’m trying to relieve the pressure on myself, approach the races calmly and enjoy it. It’s worked so far as I’ve opened up with my quickest opener and each race now has improved.”
As a junior athlete Sam won the Welsh U20 Championships in the 100m and 200m, and has reduced his PR since then, after moving to Cardiff Metropolitan University, where he now trains.
“The focus from the ALTIS trip for me were the technical aspects of setting up my race. I’ve been able to take that and implement it into my season.”
“I ran a new PB for me at Loughborough this past weekend, but I don’t really think about times. I just want to go as quick as I can.”
“The competition in Wales is improving, with a lot of guys having a breakthrough year such as Christian Jones who had his first GB vest this past weekend.”
“I have three weeks of training in the build up to the Welsh Championships and British U23 Championships.”
You can follow Sam’s progress through his twitter page or Welsh Athletics through their website.