Collins exudes confidence ahead of Golden Gala

Collins exudes confidence ahead of Golden Gala

Thursday 1 July 2004

Rome, Italy - At an official press conference ahead of tomorrow’s MGK-Vis Golden Gala, the second leg of the TDK Golden League 2004, which takes place in the Olympic stadium (Friday, 2 July), World 100m champion Kim Collins (SKN) exuded positive energy.

By his own high standard Collins has so far not approached top gear this season, in fact he has hardly raced at all. Yet there was no doubting the confidence of the World champion as he hinted this morning that the rest of the sprinting world was about to be woken out of its competitive slumber.

The 28 year-old who has a personal, national record best from 2000 of 9.98 (9.92 windy - 2003) has had just four outings at 100m between March and the end of June. Collins’ season’s best of 10.21 came last Sunday into a strong 1.6 head wind when winning at the IAAF Super Grand Prix meet in Gateshead (UK). Despite such windy conditions his running looked assured, and his season’s best should surely be smashed out of sight tomorrow night in Rome’s warm and still conditions.

“Things are just beginning to happen,” confirmed a confident Collins. “Very little racing has so far taken place, my season in fact is only just underway. I can promise you the list of names on the top of the world (for 2004) will start to see some changes.”

“Yes, I expect a season’s best tomorrow in the (weather) conditions and the opponents I will face here.”

“I have been more consistent in my training this year. It’s been going very well but basically I’m the same guy who won the World title last summer,” confirmed Collins who has been training in Texas, Jamaica and is now based in Amsterdam.

What about the fact that four out of the last five previous Olympic 100m winners came into their Games as the reigning World champion from the previous summer? Does that add to Collins’ pressure?

“Yes, I am aware of that fact. I have just been trying to keep calm, and run one race at a time.”

Have any of his potential opponents for the Olympic crown impressed him so far this season?

“For them to impress me they will have to beat me first!”

You can’t be more confident than that, and perhaps the same stature and prowess which took Carl Lewis (twice), Donovan Bailey, and Maurice Greene to Olympic laurels on the back of World Championship wins will also take the man from St. Kitts to Athens gold too.