Elroy eyes Korea | TeamSA - TeamSA

Elroy eyes Korea

Winner of the 3000-metre event in Metz, France on Monday night, our Elroy Gelant will tackle the rest of his European track and field season with renewed confidence after his victory, writes Mark Etheridge.

Gelant clocked an excellent 7min 41.59 for his victory, just split seconds outside Juan van Deventer’s national mark for the distance (7:41.06).

Talking to Road to London 2012 after the race Gelant was a happy man. “There were a lot of other South Africans at this meeting, I reckons about 11 or 12 and it really felt like a Yellow Pages meeting back home!”

Potchefstroom based Gelant had the benefit of a strong South African support structure in the 7.5 lap race. “The race started off nicely and for the first kilometre, we threw in a 2min 34sec split. Then me, and team-mates Gert Manora, Gladwin Mzazi and Tshamano Setone just stuck behind the Kenyans and Ethiopians for first half of the race.

“We went through 2000m in 5.11 and then for the last kilometre I went with the Ethiopian guy (Arega Dawit Wolde) and the Kenyans until we dropped the Kenyans with 300m to go.”

And then it was Gelant’s turn to go on his own. “With 100m to run, I outkicked the Ethiopian guy. It was a really nice meeting and I felt great during the race, most of the time nice and relaxed.”

So what is Gelant’s goal in the upcoming weeks. “My ultimate goal is still to qualify for the World Championships in Daegu, South Korea later in the year ÔÇô in the 5000m,” he said.

Watch this spaceÔǪ he next runs in Oordegem, Belgium at the weekend where he’ll be search of that qualifying mark ÔÇô A standard is 13min 20sec and B standard 13:27. His current best time is 13.25.88.