Bruintjies finds form in Turku

Henricho Bruintjies has kind of become the forgotten sprinter of South African athletics but that might just have changed this week when he clocked a time of 10.06s in the 100 metres at the Paavo Nurmi Games in Turku, Finland.

It is the Tuks-athlete’s best performance since July 2015 when he sprinted to his first and only official sub ten second race of his career. He clocked 9.97s in LaChaux-de-Fonds. Last year his best time was only 10.11s.

Ramil Guliyev (Turkey) won the 100m last night running 10.02s, with Bruintjies second and another Tuks athlete, Emile Erasmus, was third in 10.13s.

Werner Prinsloo (coach) has been predicting for the past few weeks that Bruintjies is on track to start running fast times again. Running 10.06s might just be the confidence booster Bruintjies needed to dip under 10 seconds again.

Bruintjies will compete in his next race on 20 June in Velenje.

Erasmus is quite satisfied with how his race played out and with good reason. Last Friday at the Lathi Games in Finland he won the 100m in a time of 10.35s. Four days later he has improved his time by 0.23s. His time of 10.13s is the second best of his career. Earlier this season at Tuks he ran 10.08s.

“I was a bit slow out of the blocks but I managed to execute my driving phase well. I think I lost the race in the last 20 metres as I was not able to carry my top speed to the end, but I will work on it,” said Erasmus who will be racing later this week at Herouville, France again.

Quite a few Tuks-athletes will be competing at the same meeting. For Rikenette Steenkamp, the South African 100m-hurdles champion, it is the start to her international campaign. She is realistic as to what awaits her in Europe.

“I cannot afford to be oblivious to the times the international athletes are running. On average it is 12.40s to 12.50s but I know that I can still improve a lot. Three years ago I wrote on a piece of paper a time of 13.20s which was what I was striving for. Now my best time is 13.02s. It is only the first year that I am being coached by Hennie Kriel (Tuks Coach). His speed programme is definitely working for me. However I definitely need to work on my hurdling technique, it is not as efficient as it could be,” said Steenkamp who set personal best this season by running 13.02s.

Thando Roto will compete in the 100m and Clarence Munyai in the 200m.

* LJ van Zyl (Tuks) is competing at the Diamond League in Oslolater this week. His built-up to the race has been slightly hampered by severe sinus problems.


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