Jeremy Wariner believes Jamaica’s Jermaine Gonzales will be the danger man in the men’s 400 metres next season. The American also admits that the Caribbean star has put some life back into the way he will start to prepare for races.
Wariner, a former world and Olympic champion and a man many believed would have eclipsed Michael Johnson’s world record in the event, said he has been monitoring Gonzales’ progression ever since he was a junior and revealed that his outing last season showed that he was on a mission.
“I’ve seen him (Gonzales) mature throughout the years,” Wariner said in the Jamaica Observer on Sunday. “He has, unfortunately, been injured a lot through his career and last year he was finally able to stay healthy and move up and start running consistently and anyone who runs consistent 44 like he was doing last season is a competitor.”
Gonzales managed to shake off those injuries which set him back in the past to set a Jamaican record last term.
Training at the Racers Club under the watchful eye of likes of Bert Cameron and Glen Mills, the former Commonwealth Games bronze medal winner broke Roxbert Martin’s 13-year-old Jamaican national record in July at the IAAF Monaco Diamond League meeting.
His time and personal best of 44.40 seconds was better than the 44.89 previous mark held by Martin and Wariner knew it was coming. The American also admits that Gonzales’ work ethic will inspire him to train even harder.
“He’s (Gonzales) going to come out there and give it all he has,” Wariner said.
“Last year… he showed it every time he stepped on the track. He ran his hardest and was pretty much done at the end of the race and people like that is great for me because it makes me train even harder at practise… knowing that I have to step my game up to make sure I stay ahead of him,” he added.