Revealed: Ferdinand Omanyala's mind-blowing time target ahead of Olympic games

Revealed: Ferdinand Omanyala's mind-blowing time target ahead of Olympic games

Mark Kinyanjui 12:00 - 18.04.2024

Omanyala's target is to run faster than the time Usain Bolt set when he won gold at the London 2012 Olympic games.

Reigning Commonwealth Games 100m champion, Ferdinand Omanyala, is gearing up for his outdoor season opener at Saturday’s Absa KipKeino Classic at Nyayo National Stadium with high aspirations.

Currently ranked as the third-fastest man globally by World Athletics, Omanyala has his sights set on an Olympic podium finish and has set a specific time target to aid his pursuit.

Omanyala, Africa’s fastest man with a 9.77 record, aims to shatter his personal best. “The 9.66 is the time I really want to run. As soon as I do that, I will cut it off and set another goal,” Omanyala shared with Olympics.

Running 9.66 would be 0.02 seconds faster than the 9.68 Usain Bolt set at the Olympic games in London in 2012, which in itself was 0.10 short of his world-record 9.58 three years earlier.

The 28-year-old sprinter is not just focused on individual glory; he is also on a mission to secure a three-peat gold medal at the Kip Keino Classic. Here, he will face stiff competition from perennial rival Kenneth Bednarek of the USA, whom he edged out to second place at Kasarani Stadium last season.

Omanyala's impressive track record at the Kip Keino Classic speaks volumes about his prowess. In 2021, he clinched a silver with a time of 9.77, just behind champion Trayvon Bromell of the USA.

The following year, Omanyala upped his game, bagging gold in 9.85, leaving American sprinting sensation Fred Kerley in second place and Bednarek trailing in sixth. Last season, he reaffirmed his dominance, securing gold in 9.84, ahead of Bednarek and Jerome Blake of Canada.

Joining Omanyala in the Kenyan relay team for the World Relays in the Bahamas next month, his determination is unmistakable. Despite facing formidable opponents like Arthur Cisse of Ivory Coast, a sprinter with a commendable international presence, Omanyala remains undeterred.

Kenneth Bednarek, Omanyala’s main rival, has been in stellar form this season, clinching first place in the men’s 200m at the Miramar Invitation in Florida, as well as podium finishes in the men’s 400m at the UCF Knights Invite and Pepsi Florida Relays.

Another Kenyan athlete to watch out for is Mark Otieno. Once the national record holder for the men’s 100m, Otieno has made a remarkable comeback after a two-year doping ban, clocking a personal best of 10.05 in the run-up to the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.

As the Absa KipKeino Classic unfolds this Saturday, all eyes will be on Omanyala as he strives to achieve his target time of 9.66 seconds and continue his impressive run towards Olympic glory in Paris.

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