Carter lays plan for return to Bird's Nest
André Lowe, Senior Staff Reporter
Jamaican sprinter Nesta Carter is looking to brush aside the disappointments of last season, as he looks ahead to the place where it really all started for him - Beijing.
Now 29, Carter will be looking to book a ticket on Jamaica's team to the IAAF World Championships this year in Beijing, China, with the iconic Bird's Nest Stadium forming an idealistic venue. It is the site of Jamaican sprinting fireworks, capped by Usain Bolt, as well as a then world record 37.10 seconds in the 4x100 metres relay. He has since helped Jamaica to 37.04 (Daegu 2011) and 36.94 (London 2012) 4x100m world records.
"Back in 2008 in the Bird's Nest, that was a spectacular year and an amazing experience. I only did the 4x100m relay, of course, but that was the Olympics that every Jamaican can remember, and the one we mostly speak about," Carter told The Gleaner in a recent sit down.
"Running the relay and breaking the world record, I was pretty young, but it was a great experience that put me on the map. It was my first year running nine seconds, and that was certainly my breakthrough year. I want to go back there with memory and leave with history."
His most recent history is somewhat less glistening.
Carter finished seventh in the 60-metre final at the World Indoor Championships in Sopot last March and missed the chance to compete at the Commonwealth Games after aggravating a hamstring injury at the National Championships. He ended the season with just three sub-10 seconds in 17 starts over 100 metres.
He had won a bronze medal at the World Championships in Moscow a year earlier, a medal which is kept by his mother. Carter has a career-best 9.78 clocking. And as he gets ready to stride into the 2015 season with renewed determination, the bronze pendant serves as a timely reminder of the effort required.
"That medal (from 2013 World Championships) brings back a lot of memories. Everytime I look at it - the hard work that you put in, all the time you committed - it brings you back to your roots, to where you began and reminds you what you had to do to get there, the work you had to put in," Carter noted.
not a bad season
"Yeah, I missed the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow, and I was very disappointed with that, but injuries are a part of the sport. I picked up after that when I went over to Europe, so overall it wasn't a bad season, I had a fairly decent season, and I'm now looking forward to 2015," Carter said.
"It's a different programme this season. Things are looking very good, though; I've been working hard. The focus is to run one or two indoor meets this season and then the World Championships. I'm trying to improve on certain things that I've been working on from last season, so I'm happy where I am right now."
"My number-one focus right now is to stay healthy and continue to push myself hard in training, make the Jamaican team at trials, and once you make the Jamaican team, you can take it from there," he added.