Press conference of the Czech Athletics Association for the nomination for the European indoor championship in Istanbul, February 23, 2023, Prague. Mile runner Filip Sasínek.
Prague – Athlete Filip Sasínek, Czech miler number one, is already preparing for the fifth indoor European championship in his career. In 2017, during his second participation, he won a bronze medal in the 1,500-meter race, and he also managed to advance to the finals in two other starts. Before the championship in Istanbul, he believes that he can surprise again. At today's press conference in Prague, he said that he feels the same as he did six years ago.
“Advancing to the finals is difficult every time. The 15-man team and the whole athletics are moving in an unreal way. It is definitely (advancing) always a little more difficult. However, I think, even given my experience, that I can believe that I know how to do it, ” said Sasínek. He considers advancing to the finals a fundamental task. “When it's done, they say it's easier to show something,” smiled the twenty-seven-year-old athlete.
The native of Uherské Hradiště believes that the situation is similar to that in 2017, when in Belgrade he won bronze. “The season before wasn't good. It was rather gradual. And the seasons after that were the opposite. Just before the peak, I showed great performances, but I didn't manage to convert it. This year, I feel that it's starting to improve. I believe that I can surprise someone again.” said Sasínek.
As an indicator of his form, the weekend championship of the Czech Republic serves him, where he ran the championship record with a time of 3:40.25. “I've started to like the 15, so I believe that it will culminate in Istanbul. I believe that I'm going in the right direction,” said Sasínek, who was also pleased with the additional nomination of compatriot Jan Friš. “It's definitely better if there's someone else in the discipline,” he said.
Indoor races are specific due to the shorter oval, but Sasínek likes them. “The fact that everything is closer, the spectators are more involved in the game, so maybe it affects me more. It's specific. I used to run the eight, which is more about speed, maybe I'm awakening it in myself. I don't know what it is about there is magic. But it always appeared,” noted Sasínek with a smile.
Last week in Liévin, Sasínek presented himself in a race in which the Ethiopian Lamecha Girma ran the indoor world record for 3000 meters. The Czech representative was one of the conductors.
“Similar events are arranged well in advance. Everything was arranged about three months ago, but at that time it was not yet listed as a world record. I only found out about it a month in advance. It was a bit of a coincidence,” said Sasínek, adding that he was not the problem of running in the lead right from the start. “I'm used to it from the Czech Republic. It's just a little more difficult that you can't fluctuate with the pace so that others can run well. But it wasn't such a problem,” he declared.
His partner Kristiina Mäki will also perform in Istanbul, but his two-year-old son Kaapo will not fly with them to the championship this time. “She will stay with our parents. Even in view of the recent earthquake in Turkey, the parents will not try to travel there. Moreover, it is a short championship,” added Sasínek.
Vondrová would like to confirm her form at the EC, she does not want but bound by expectations
At the age of twenty-three, athlete Lada Vondrová is already preparing for her third European Indoor Championship. Next week in Istanbul, she will try to confirm her position as the eighth fastest woman in the 400 meters in Europe. At today's press conference, Vondrová stated that she feels good, but does not want to bind herself to specific goals.
“I would like to repeat the run from Ostrava (at the MČR), stabilize my form and confirm that I am able to run under 52 ( seconds). We'll see where it takes me. I don't want to tie myself up like I did before. I'll go there with the intention of giving my best performance and we'll see what it takes,” Vondrová said.
The protégé of coach Jaroslav Jón competed in two World Indoor Tour races in the current indoor season, which she considers a great advantage. “We wanted it and I'm glad that I managed to get to two good races. I ran with the best from Europe. That's also why I only ran the 200m at the Republic, because I had enough on Thursday. It was a great experience,” said Vondrová, who she improved her personal best in the 200m in Ostrava.
Vondrová often had health problems in the past years, which is why she changed her approach to athletics. “We started to train more in terms of quality than volume. We changed the composition of the training and I also started going to physiotherapy regularly. We also changed the technique of running. We started to give it more. As I said that running was not enough, I took hold of my word and I try to give it 150 percent,” she declared.
The USK Prague athlete will also compete in the 4×400 meter relay in Istanbul. The Czechs were among the six fastest teams. “I'm very happy that we got there. It was already looking pale. I hope that getting there was more difficult than succeeding there. We will go all out and I think it could be a surprise and a good placing.” said Vondrová.