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PROTRACK » GENERAL » Australian sprinter Tom Gamble hires dad as coach as he chases world championships

Australian sprinter Tom Gamble hires dad as coach as he chases world championships

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Australian sprinter Tom Gamble hires dad as coach as he chases world championships

The Courier-Mail
14th June 2017

TOM Gamble wanted a change of coach to take his athletics career to the next level and hired his dad.

Gamble and Rio Olympics long jumper finalist Henry Frayne leave Brisbane on Wednesday (14/6), with the sprinter chasing a 200m qualifying time for the London world championships.

Gamble, 25, Alex Hartmann, 24, and Trae Williams, 20, will also have a key warm-up race as members of Australia’s men’s 4x100m relay team at a Diamond League meet on July 9.

They form a Queensland core for a six-man Australian 4x100m team that has qualified for the August world titles and are working towards a goal set last year of winning a medal at the Gold Coast Commonwealth Games.

Last year, Gamble took on his father Peter and Queensland Academy of Sport strength and conditioning expert Andrew Lulham as his coaches after he had been coached by Wayne Leaver since he was nine.

Brisbane sprinter Tom Gamble is off to the world titles. Photo: Darren England

“My dad was always my biggest support but he’s taken over the role with Andrew Lulham. The support of the QAS has been a tipping point for me in my career,’’ Gamble said.

“Wayne was very supportive in the transition and will always be the coach I learned a lot from.’’

A late grower who was unable to make the top relay team of the Anglican Church Grammar School in Year 12, Gamble’s sprinting progress took him to a peak of a 4x100m world championships qualifying time in the Bahamas along with Hartmann, Williams and NSW’s Nick Andrews.

“It makes you hungrier to go after what you really want and back yourself (when success takes time) — things will work out eventually,’’ the 190cm Gamble said.

The Brisbane sprinter has a 20.61 sec personal best for the 200m and hopes to post a 20.44 time to gain an individual 200m race for Australia at the world titles. If he achieves it in Europe, with a first race in Spain on Friday week (June 24), it would also count as an A-qualifier for the Gold Coast Commonwealth Games.

“I’ll have maybe three races before the Diamond League relay in London in which to post an individual time,’’ Gamble said.

“I’d be quite confident of getting a qualifying time. I’ve got over a liver infection which hampered me during the year. I’ve done some PBs (in training).’’

Gamble and Queensland Athletics official Matt Lynch decided last year to form a regular training group for most southeast Queensland’s top male sprinters.

Hartmann, who defended his national 200m title in April when Gamble was ill, and Australian 100m champion Williams have also committed to the sessions around the region and Gamble numbers them among his friends in the sport.

“Being Queenslanders, we are a hell of a lot more passionate than some of the NSW sprinters,’’ Gamble said with a laugh.

“We support each other around the meets and good friends. We have our hopes for getting the Australian record of 38.17 sec (held by two national teams, from 1995 and 2012) either at the worlds or at the Commonwealth Games.

“Usain Bolt’s track club usually enters the London Diamond League meet so it would be good to line up against the big man.

“We’re a bunch of babies at the moment really, so we’re after experience.’’

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