National Track and Field Athletes Get Ready for New Season

ASTANA – The national track and field team of Kazakhstan took part in the first international competitions in a new season. In his interview to The Astana Times, head coach of the national team Vyacheslav Sokirko shared how the country’s athletes feel before entering the next Olympic cycle.

According to tradition, our team started the season with three Grand Prix Asia. Two of them were in Thailand (Bangkok and Chonburi), while the third took place in the capital of Sri Lanka, Colombo. In short, we reported the results: three gold medals for the first two stages, and two more in the final. We were impressed by the triple jump of the athlete from Pavlodar Roman Valiyev, who won with a result of 17 meters 10 centimeters. This is a very good start of the season.

You are not the only one who was impressed by such a result. First of all, Valiyev became one of the ten best athletes in the world of a new season, secondly, he reached the World Cup standards, which will take place in Moscow in August this year. For the national team of Kazakhstan it was the tenth license to the FIFA World Cup. As of now, we traveled to South East Asia. Olga Bludova executed the eleventh standard in a 200 meter run in Almaty. And this is only the beginning of the season as all important competitions are still ahead.

Do you have now the whole new national team? Do you want to single out someone from the athletes?
Yes, I took many young athletes. And they, of course, all are so enthusiastic: “Let’s win! Let’s beat them all!” I am very happy to have Ivan Ivanov from the Almaty region on our team. It was necessary for me that he has a chance to learn how to put the shot in the worthy company, because he already has no competitors at home. Anton Bodnar is in a good shape as well, he jumped in height at 2 meters 21 centimeters, although the young Shymkent athlete has problems because of the illness of his coach and because of lack of good place for trainings. Anton impressed all experts: he is tall, light, bouncy, agile. Such sportsmen become good athletes.

Dmitriy Korobeynikov showed his actual result. For many athletes mentioned above, especially, for Julia Rakhmanova who improved the results from one start to another, these competitions were debuts on the international scene. Starting from fourth place, Julia won silver twice. Liliya Bazyaruk (Nizamova) used to run the 400 meters, and now she decided to try 800 meters. The girl has a good motivation and is hard-working. We’ll see what results she will achieve.

Artem Kosinov is an experienced Olympian who participated in Olympic Games in London, hopefully he will perform a standard for the World Cup. He has everything to achieve that. Vitaliy Tsykunov jumped to a height of 2 meters 18 centimeters. Considering that he had an injury during last year and did not train, his result can be considered as a good one.

Very interesting was the competition between women in the 100 meters with barriers. Apart from our three athletes – Anastasia Pilipenko, Natalia Ivoninskaya and Anastasia Soprunova – one of the strongest Asian runners from Indonesia participated in the competition. Four of them competed for the medals.

Our readers are eager to find out more about other leaders of the Kazakhstan team who did not compete in the Grand Prix. For example, Olympic champion Olga Rypakova, Dmitry Karpov in decathlon, high jumper Marina Aitova…
Rypakova misses this season. She is having a rest now, and since autumn she will begin the preparation for the competition. According to plans of her trainer, she will appear at her best at Asian games 2014 in South Korea.

Dmitry Karpov is feeling all right, and preparing for a large tournament in Kladno (Czech Republic). Then he will take part in the Asian championship, then in the World Cup.

Marina Aitova won the bronze registering 1 meter 92 centimeters in her jump. She is preparing for the upcoming competitions. High jumper Sergey Zasimovich is now suffering from an old injury, so he is recovering. I think he will be ready before the beginning of the tournament, dedicated to Guzman Kosanov.

You have already mentioned that as of today the Kazakhstan athletes have 11 licenses for the competitions of 2013 – the World Cup in Moscow. Can you name these athletes?
These are walkers Ayman and Sholpan Kozhakhmetovs, Galina Kichigina, George Sheyko and Vitaly Anichkin, all-rounders Dmitry and Irina Karpova, marathoner Mikhail Krasilov, Marina Aitova, Roman Valiyev and Olga Bludova.

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