By Charlie Talbot-Smith
AFTER a disappointing end to the 2011 season, Hither Green’s Conrad Williams insists he has learned his lessons and will return stronger for the experience – starting at the world indoor championships in Istanbul.
The 29-year-old failed to produce his best when it counted last year at the UK championships, meaning he missed out on a seat on the plane to Daegu and the world championships.
Out in Korea Great Britain’s 400m sprinters endured a championships to forget with no individual making the final and the 4x400 relay team finishing down in seventh.
But with a personal best indoor time of 46.20s under his belt at the Birmingham Grand Prix on February 18, Williams is convinced that better days are just around the corner.
And first up for him are the world indoor championships, with Williams selected as part of the 4x400m relay squad this week and he is confident he can continue his fine start to the season.
“So far things have been going well in 2012, I opened up with two personal bests and I am really happy with how things are going,” said Williams.
“I stayed at home this winter and kept my head down because I wanted to make sure that I made a big impact on 2012.
“The main goal for me is to stay focused and take each day as it comes.
“I had to pick myself up, last year the trials didn’t go too well for me.
“Race strategy wise there were some bad decisions that I made, so I made sure I concentrated on that in the winter.
“Time-wise, I had some really good times by the end, but they didn’t come at the right time so I needed to focus to make myself more consistent.
“But now it’s 2012, so everyone is going to raise their game, as am I.
“The team that went out to Daegu was a fairly young team so they could see the times that the seniors were running.
“They did a really good job. We just trying to get back to where we were, and make sure we are running good times.
“Once we race each other individually, our times will come down, so we are trying to run to peak, to make our times come down.”
Williams already has a world and European silver medal to his name for his performances as part of Britain’s 4x400m relay team but the 29-year-old insists his focus for the moment is on qualifying for the individual event.
“Once we compete with the top guys here, we can make that into a team and we will have a good relay team,” he added.
“But everyone knows it’s all about the individual, the relay is the icing on the cake. Individually we all want to compete and reach the final, for ourselves first, and secondly, the relays.
“I’m pretty relaxed right now, I drive past the Olympic stadium three times a week and I know that the pressure will come once your there.
“But you need to make the team first, that’s where the biggest pressure is at the moment. As athletes we know what we need to do. Once we’re on the team then we can deal with the drama that comes with it.”
Brought to you by SPAR, official sponsors of UK Athletics. For more information, visit spar.co.uk
Follow us on Twitter @NewsShopperSprt