Newham & Essex Beagles youngster David sets his sights on silverware

PUBLISHED: 15:00 23 June 2011

David Bolarinwa believes he can win a medal at the under-20 Championships

David Bolarinwa believes he can win a medal at the under-20 Championships


David Bolarinwa’s Mr Muscle impersonation might have backfired this winter – but the Newham & Essex Beagles sprinter insists his early season form proves he’ll be lifting the silverware at the England under-20 Championships, which start on Friday.

After a highly impressive 2010, which saw Bolarinwa head the under-18 world rankings as well as collect two medals at the inaugural Youth Olympic Games, the 17-year-old decided some extra bulk was the secret to moving his career to the next level.

However, having been plagued by a sequence of hamstring injuries in the indoor season, Bolarinwa has since shed his winter pounds and immediately reaped the rewards with four personal bests in May.

Three of those performances came at Bedford - the scene of the England Under-20 showdown which doubles up as the European Junior Championship trials.

Bolarinwa has already sailed under the European Junior qualifying standard but is still itching to lay down a marker this weekend.

“I tried to get a bit bigger over the winter and I gained some muscle,” said Bolarinwa, who is part of the Spar Sprint Stars programme.

“But in the end I felt like it was slowing me down. To be a sprinter you need to feel light and quick and I didn’t, so I changed back and lost the weight again and it’s gone well since.

“The start of the season has gone really well and I have run a lot of fast times and personal bests. So hopefully I can keep that going at Bedford and win the race.

“The pressure is off me so I am in a good position because I can just run and concentrate on winning the race and not worry about times at all which is great.”

Barring disaster after racing in Bedford, Bolarinwa’s attentions will turn to his European-wide rivalries, and specifically the continent’s number one sprinter this year, Jimmy Vicaut.

Two years Bolarinwa’s senior, the Frenchman has just six hundredths of a second on the Beagles sprinter – a time he plans on making up when it matters most in Estonia next month.

“Hopefully I can get through the trials and then go to the European Juniors in good shape,” added Bolarinwa.

“I have looked at the rankings and there is the French runner ahead of me so the plan is to be challenging for the podium in Estonia.

“I will get to run against him for the first time at a meeting in Germany in a couple of weeks time, so I’ll have a look at him there and then devise some tactics to hopefully win in Estonia.”

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