In a very fast race where winner Jakob Ingebrigtsen set a new European mark of 3:27.14 in the 1,500 metres, Charles Philibert-Thiboutot set the second fastest time of his career at this distance on Sunday as part of the Diamond League of Chorzów, Poland. His time of 3min 33.29s, good for 12th place, allows him to add a green hook next to a qualifying criterion for the Paris Olympics.
But beyond the numbers, Philibert-Thiboutot was not jumping for joy in an interview after the race. In fact, he was rather disappointed not to have been able to fight for a better place in the standings.
“It’s fun, I still manage with an Olympic standard. But my first goal was to be more competitive up front with the guys who did 3:31, explained the athlete in an interview with Sportcom. This is my second trip from Vancouver [where he trains] to Europe in less than a month and I really feel the fatigue associated with it. Unfortunately, today [Sunday] I couldn’t be further forward, but I’m still happy to get through it with the Olympic standard. »
This fatigue, particularly related to jet lag, the 32-year-old runner felt it at dawn last night, when he finally managed to fall asleep. She also showed up at the end of the race a few hours later.
“The first three laps I ran after Sam Tanner who finished fifth in 3:31.24 and I was still with him with 300 meters to go. The difference with him is that he took out a kick and that’s something I could have done if I didn’t have this accumulated fatigue. I just didn’t have an answer. It took me everything to get to the finish line, and I couldn’t accelerate on the last lap. »
Philibert-Thiboutot was training in Vancouver last week when he received a surprise invitation to take part in this meeting of the prestigious world circuit. A first for him this year.
“You’re not saying no to a Diamond League. I thought I wouldn’t have a break in my training for a month, but that was great news, because it was the only realistic occasion where I could do an Olympic standard, because there are no races in the circuit where it would go as fast as that. »
Three riders (hares) were chosen to set the relentless pace of over 26 km/h, and the field stretched from the start of the race to the point where even Ingebrigtsen, Olympic champion in the distance, did not stick the third hare at the train for a long time.
“I think everyone in the top 8 made a personal best and that’s kind of where I wanted to be. It would have been difficult to have better conditions: three hares, it was very hot, no wind, an incredible atmosphere and a fast track. […] We knew that everyone was going to get away with a fast time, because the conditions were perfect,” concluded Philibert-Thiboutot, who will be back home to compete in the Canadian Championships and prepare for the World Championships where circumstances will ensure that he will not arrive on site at the last minute.