Dmitriy Karpov is a guy that is certainly not to be underestimated – he leaves it to the others to explain their athletic life and is a man of few words. That was the case during the first official press meet with Bryan sitting between Roman and Dmitriy in Götzis.
Reporters where asking again about world record aspirations and Bryan said he would have already his hands full with this two guys here (putting a thumb in each direction).
Roman had to show his injury-shoulder again, but Dmitriy is an iceberg and waits for he’s moment.
I asked him (after the press meet) if he had the world record in his head?
D: If you really are competitive and as in my case, if I really want to do my best, the world record has to be a goal.
Are you in good form?
D: there have been now recent injuries, no sickness, my training is all right and I want to win in Osaka!
Are you doing much weight training, do you bench press for example?
D: My best bench Press is a 140kg.
What is your favourite event?
D: the 400m (he says with a smile.)
And why is that so, because many don’t like the suffering that comes at the end and after the event?
D: I like it just for that reason – it is an event in witch you die, its a way of showing real stamina!
Note: Dmitriy has a excellent 46.81 time for the 400m (2004).
Did you recently change certain things?
D: in fact my father is no longer my trainer, Ed Hamalaïnen is.
Later Karpov stopped after 9 events but (sorry) I haven’t seen him anymore. Doing his personal bests would give Karpov a 9082 points. This summer he will be 26. Suddenly the heptathlete Irina Naumenko joins him. Irina has the fourth ever female score in women decathlon(7798 points behind Skuiyte, Collovillé and Steigauf).
As they are the only decathlete couple I’ve ever heard of in the world I can’t help thinking of the superbaby’s they probably will have one day!
My eye caught Maurice Smith before the meet started.
Hey Maurice do you have 5 minutes for decathlon 2000?
M: of course.
Do you know the site?
Maurice what is your form and did you recently improve in certain events?
M: last year I needed surgery in the lower abdominal, but everything turned out good, I’m training again on a high level. This year I did a pb of 17.41 in the shot put and this month I went with Pascal (Behrenbruch) to a small meeting in Germany and I did another pb of 54.05 in the discus (both official).
Note:17.41 in Auburn 21 04 07
What events do you love the most?
M: I like the most discus, shot put and the 110m hurdles. I like it that the shot is after the long jump because of the bouncing. (Good legs are needed in the shot put to.)
And the lesser?
M: the pole vault but I’m working on it.
M: I push 335 pounds (152 kg)Bench Press; 550 pounds (250kg)squat; 100 kg snatch and 140 Clean.
Have you ever done a pb in training?
I don’t measure that. Maybe it influences later your efforts in a way that you want to live up to that new standard. It can be frustrating then not to be able to do it again.
Who is a roll model to you?
Dan O’Brien was a great athlete and my coach Herb Mc Kenley (the former Jamaican 400m runner).
What was one of the nicest surprises in your career?
To run in the Olympics in the hurdles against the best decathletes, I remember that was a very nice experience. At first I couldn’t believe I was standing there in a heat with the best. I was also second in that race!
Maurice what are your goals for the near future?
This year I want to do more than 8500 points. I want a medal in Osaka (WC). I also think I can improve in all events and be a threat for the world record! Next year I have to explode and win the Olympics!
The life of a decathlete is not easy, how is it in Jamaica to be a decathlete?
Jamaica has a good tradition in athletics, the people are really interested in there athletes. You know when I compete in championships that are shown on TV like the world championships, my mom told me that the whole of Jamaica sits behind the screen cheering an shouting. That’s a support and it gives you a good feeling.
The life of a decathlete is some times hard but its as hard as you make it. You have to be very strong in the head. My real genuine love for decathlon keeps me doing it.
A decathlete loves the sport, do you like other sports?
I like soccer, basketball and swimming.
Are you still studying in the States?
No, now I have a bachelor degree in education.
You look forward to something?
Certainly to see my son, I adore the little guy.
Thank you very much Maurice and we wish you success.
I shake hands with Tomas Dvorak and I tell him how surprised I was to see him again on the list of competitors. (He’s thirty-five.) This is the day before the competition.
What are you doing this days Tomas?
I train young people, especially sprint training and the high hurdles. I have about 10 pupils.
Tomas how many kilometres did you run in a week when you where training for the world record?
Probably the equivalent of a marathon (42 km).
You look really in shape.
Well you know, all this years my weight never really changed, a few years ago it was 90 kg and it still is today.
Its nice to see that you don’t stop.
The day my young compatriots start to beat me in the decathlon is the day I probably have to stop.
What are your expectations?
To make no mistakes like last year here in Götzis.(He refers to the long jump.) I also hope it will be good weather.
Will you do 8000?
I hope so.
To many decathletes you are the greatest but what are a few of the big names to you in decathlon history?
Roman, Bryan, Daley, Jurgen.
Tomas is a modest guy. Always helpful to his fellow decathletes coaching them and advising them. During the competition I looked for his best efforts in decathlon last year in 2006. Competing the first day in Götzis he bettered every event.
Have a look:
Year 2006: 11.12 / 740 / 15.85 /198 / 50.83 (bests from four different competitions 2006)
Götzis 2007: 11.03 / 746 / 16.14 / 200 / 50.00
The second day opened with disaster for Tomas and his fans: he injured his leg in the 110 hurdles. On Sunday I asked him when he hopes to compete again and he told me he will try to start again in 3 weeks.
If the man is doing another 8000+ he would not longer have to share the joint second place of 34 decathlons with Plaziat. The list would start with Sebrle 37 times over 8000 (WR), then Dvorak with 35 and third place Paziat 34. One thing is for sure Tomas is now WR holder 39 times 7900+ with Roman on his heels (38).
Andrei Krauchanka is the new popular guy of the stadium. He won with 8617 points, broke 7 pb’s in decathlon plus a first and a second day record.
At once the organizers started to prepare the podium for the winner. But where was Andrei Krauchanka? He’s about 190 tall, so how was it possible that I couldn’t find him?
But then I saw about 20 or 30 children gathered in a cirkel! I thought that most be him, he most be there somewhere in the middle because I would probably do the same. The man loves children, so I found him sitting on the ground like an Indian in the middle of more than 20 children constantly giving autographs.
Because there was a constant flow of children that found out that it was him that was sitting there, he most have given hundreds of signatures seated on the holy ground of the Mösle stadium. There was even a little girl that asked him “can I put my name on your arm”?(with a black fat marker). A problem? No. No problem at all.
He likes children that’s for sure and they probably waited the hole day for an autograph of the winner, so Andrei rewarded them.
His translator Karl (he was a very good former 800m runner) was with me and asked Andrei to stand up for a few minutes.
Andrei, the last time that someone made a jump of about 500 points in one year was Erki Nool, he’s best was 8093 in 94 and in this very stadium he improved to 8575 in 95, did you expect to do so well?
A: Not at all, I hoped to do 8200.
Do you think you will still do better this year?
I hope to do good performances but I take one day at the time.
The children wanted their signatures so I said to karl that the questions could wait, (we have all been children) so he started again with his enormous task – the eleventh event: autographs.
I like his thinking but I don’t think the organizers liked it so much. The speaker started to ask where he was and that he was expected at the podium! This is all new to him but finally he arrived.
Later the members of the press could ask their questions with no one else around.
Why did you chose decathlon Andrei?
A: At first I didn’t knew much about athletics so when I heard about decathlon I immediately loved it. I said to myself why do one event if I can do ten! Doing one thing was not interesting enough to me!
Isn’t it far more difficult in life?
A: After the 1500 you’re so exhausted and pleased your task is done, then you know how nice life is.
You expected “only” 8200?
Yes I’m very pleased with my result. To me the biggest step was the 400, mentally as well as physically. I was well prepared, you see in decathlon you have to be fast, explosive, like a gymnast.
You are the youngest winner since Daley Thompson in 1980, do you expect the same as him?
Right now that’s not of my concern.
What are your favourite events?
The jumps. Preparing for Götzis I vaulted in a small competition even 520(PV).
Note: he’s pb total is now 8789p.
Who are your idols?
Dan O’Brien, Roman Sebrle and Tomas Dvorak.
Have they played the most important role in your development?
No, that is my mother – she always encouraged me to continue.
I don’t think about it at all, I don’t think about the future.
You had a little bit pain at the Achilles tendon?
Yes but right now I’m so exited that I don’t feel the pain.
What will be your next competition?
That will be the European under 23 (12 – 15 July in Debrecen HUN).
Where do you live now?
I live in Minsk near to a sports centre and that’s where I train. The food is excellent there, I sleep where it is quiet at night, I only have to take care of the mosquito’s (and he shows us a few bites).
What are the tattoo signs on your legs?
This are the ten events of decathlon.
We wish you success Andrei.