Pinnock targets 8m mark in long jump

Tuesday, July 10, 2018

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TAMPERE, Finland — After a brilliant season at which he exceeded all expectations and put himself in the conversation for a medal at the IAAF World Under-20 Championships here in Tampere, Finland, Kingston College's long jumper Wayne Pinnock, who turns 18 in October, is showing a level of maturity far beyond his age.

After jumps of 7.99m at the Digicel Grand Prix, 7.77m to win at the ISSA Boys' Championships, 7.88m to break the Penn Relays boys' high school record, and 7.96m for third in the senior section of the JAAA National Championships, Pinnock is ranked joint fifth in the world and will face a tough field that will be led by the Cuban pair of Maikel Vidal and Lester Lescay. But he is undaunted.

Pinnock was focused on himself and not the competition. “It's about me, is not about them,” the soft spoken Pinnock told the Jamaica Observer on Sunday following a training session at an indoor facility outside of Tampere.

“Physically, I am fine; mentally, I am fine,” he said while admitting that he still needed to work on his craft, though his speed on the runway and off the board were his main weapons. “But I still need to work on my landing,” which he hopes will be beyond the 8.00m mark after flirting with it a few times.

His first job, however, is to make it to the final, and so he says; it will be one step at a time. “I am in no rush, as I know the 8.00m mark will come, maybe in the final set for Wednesday's second session.”

— Paul Reid

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