This will be my last blog here in London 2012. I really enjoyed everything about the Olympics but enjoying London has been hard. As a coach you are always worried about the well being of your athletes so I really haven't been able to think of much else. So since I don't leave until Monday I will finally get to enjoy London in all its glory.
First all glory should be given to God. I know its cliche but whats cliche about the truth. It's so easy to stay in the moment and be happy when you have a guardian always protecting you.
Secondly I apologize to all family and friends to whom I haven't seen, talked to, or been around. As you see the journey to the Olympics is a difficult one. Thirdly we made history.
Jamie was the oldest American HJer in history and the way his season unfolded was definitely guided by a higher power. He accomplished all the goals I could have ever imagined and I know Jamie is not done yet, Moscow 2013 #swansong!
Will is another story. His family has made this trip amazing for me. He is the first American athlete to medal in both the LJ and TJ since 1904 and first athlete period since 1936. Truly amazing, so you see why there has to be a higher power involved.
So with this I say thank you, God Bless, and I hope to see each and every person who has supported Jamie and Will in the near future. Pictures sometimes speak louder than words.
P.S. My prayers go out to Leevan Sands; a great jumper, medalist and person. He had a serious injury during the TJ.
Getting ready to compete.
This is the 400m tube from the practice track to the stadium. Your heart starts to beat and you realize the enormity of the moment.
Where it all went down.
Its about to go down.
The Gold and Silver, Christian is a great jumper and young man, these two are gonna be on it for a long time.
Some guy who won the 200m.
Will's original inspiration and eldest brother James. Double medalist and history maker. By the way at Nando's our new favorite place.
For now there are no pictures or videos to express the sure nervousness, excitement, and euphoria I feel for tonights triple jump final. I really feel at ease because I know God has blessed us to this point and he has shown me the greatness of his power. When I left the University of Oklahoma two years ago I did not know the path he would lead me. I knew that it wasn't the right place for me but would take his guidance and he would show me a new path.
That was about two years to the day. As I sit and prepare myself for what has been an amazing experience all I can say is BLESSED! I'm blessed to be adopted by two amazing parents. I'm blessed to have a family that has supported and nurtured me. I'm blessed to have people in my life that have helped turn me into the person I have become. I'm blessed to have coaches who have helped guide me to the coach I've become. I'm blessed to work with amazing athletes, trainers, coaches, and people who have all played a role into me getting to this very stage.
Tonight we can help right history, no athlete has medaled in both the long jump and triple jump since the 1930s. I know its in his hands and my faith is strong, so I know His plan will be done. But I also see its gonna be 70 degrees and beautiful today and the sun will be shining.
Tonight Will Claye won a bronze medal in the long jump. The competition started out kind of slow, but the weather was about 60 degrees and the winds were swirling. Unfortunately we had a head wind for about each jump. We are very happy with our result because really triple jump is what truly sets Will and Christian Taylor apart. God has truly been good and his family was able to see him compete. We are now in therapy mode and we will get ready for the triple jump which starts on Tuesday and concludes on Thursday. Tomorrow Jamie jumps in the qualifying round of the high jump. So now I must come down from my high and re-focus at the task at hand. God is good.
Will, his brother and mother.
Badgers in London! 10000 meter runner Matt Tegenkamp and me. I actually helped recruit him to Madtown. Full circle.
Today was the start of track and field and Will's first day of jumping. He had the qualifying round in the LJ. Will jumped 7.99 or 26'2.75" on his first jump, fouled his second and jumped 7.86 or about 26' on his third jump. This qualified him 8th for the finals in which they were taking 12 jumpers. So not a great day but I always know he shows up when it's game time. The winds were swirling but we have to get the approach down. The event is wide open.
On a side note, the Olympics are all about walking. I've walked about 6-7 miles a day here in London. It sometimes takes longer to take a taxi or train and with it costing about 20 quid (pounds) to go about 6 miles its also cheaper. The food has also been amazing here, again I've ate Nando's a few more times and went to an Indian restaurant and it was amazing.
Tomorrow we have the long jump finals. It really is the first step of a two step journey we've taken this year. I feel Will is so disrespected in the LJ so we have a little chip on our shoulder. He was 9th at World Champs last year and 4th indoors, yet he is never ranked in the top ten. This will be the first time when he doesn't have to do the triple jump qualifying round the morning of the long jump finals. I know we are very ready to do something great. Hopefully this time tomorrow we will be one step closer to our goals.
The double decker bus!
A work of art?
Warming up before we get to the big stage.
The Olympic Stadium from the coaches eye!
Burn baby burn!
Head Coach and founder of Maximum Velocity Athletics.