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Clovis gears up for junior championships
1:05pm Tuesday 12th June 2012 in Sport
SALE Harriers Manchester sprint prospect Clovis Asong insists the step up to senior level has taken its toll but he still has what it takes to make the World Junior Championships in July.
The 17-year-old 400m runner finished fourth in the Loughborough International in May but his time of 47.26 seconds is still 0.32 adrift of what is required to bag himself a seat on the plane to Barcelona.
The 2011 Commonwealth Youth Games champion finished that race behind the more experienced World Indoor silver medallist Richard Buck, and despite being some way off his own personal best of 46.74 Asong believes it’s just a matter of time before everything clicks into place.
Next up is the England Under-20 Championships, starting on June 16 in Bedford, and Asong admits it’s about time he got his 2012 season off and running.
“I have only a few races outdoors – they have been OK, nothing too special,” he said. “I’ve been managing some decent times but not my best.
“But overall I am pleased with my progress and I am pushing on from last year. This time last year I was running 50-second times, so I can see progress.
“But my main goal for this season is to be running sub-45 seconds. I know I can do that by the end of the season.
“I will hopefully be able to get the time needed for Barcelona in the next few weeks, which is 46.94, I know I am capable of it. If I get there, I would hope to medal. I think I can do that.
“I am doing more senior competitions now - they are a lot harder than the junior events. You have to make sure you get a good start in the seniors, because if you get behind you can’t get back.”
Asong is one of eight talented young British sprinters taken onto the Spar Sprint Stars Programme for 2012 and he insists that recognition has given him confidence ahead of the Olympic Trials in Birmingham.
He will be looking to post a time to make the other seniors sit up and take notice when he takes to the blocks on June 24.
He added: “I will be taking part in the Olympic trials, but I don’t expect to qualify for the Olympics this summer.
“It would be different if it was at the end of the season. I know I can make it in four years though.
“I would love to go the Olympics but my ultimate aim is to be the best in the world one day. Hopefully I can get there.”
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