Robert Harting won the Werfer Cup 2013 in Wiesbaden, Germany with useful 68,31m (224′ 1″) and made clear that one should count on him for the upcoming World Championships in Moscow, Russia. After the competition, Robert spoke with leichtathletik.de about his shape, motivation problems and a very special world record.
You put yourself on the top of the 2013 world list with your season opener of 68,31m (224′ 1″); but you said you are not satisfied with it. How do you assess your first competition of the World Championship season?
I would say it was “O.K.”. Anyone who knows me knows that I like to use the incredible conditions to the fullest. And at the Werfer Cup the conditions were incredibly good. But I did not use them to the extent I would have liked. In next week’s competition I hope to get back into my rhythm and to get my legs ready again for my aggressive throwing style. The aggressiveness is what is important for my throws. My throws do not have a good technique.
How do you project the 68,31m to your current from?
The first competition has nothing to do with my form. I got back from my training camp on Wednesday and then you throw as good as possible. This throw was 90% maximum. It didn’t fly properly, didn’t rotate as it should have been. The fact that the discus still went beyond 68m shows me that I’m in a really good shape. I had two or three attempts which would have been 69m or 70m (229′ 8″) if they had not gone into the net. Therefore, I was pretty angry about those attempts. Definitely, way more was possible in this competition.
Martin Wierig was in the lead and cracked the WC “A” standard mark of 66m (216′ 6″). In fact, you didn’t take the lead until the 5th round. What are your thoughts about your countryman?
I was not surprised at all that Martin has thrown the qualification standard. What has pleasantly surprised me was the consistency in his throws. I am very happy for him; we have trained well and get along very well. Now I hope that more German throwers will follow with the qualification standard.
For the 5th year in a row you have won the Werfer Cup and opened every season with a useful mark. What makes the Werfer Cup so special?
The Werfer Cup in Wiesbaden is very important for us throwers. Discus throwers need such competitions; it is some kind of a Mecca for us. The Schulte Family prepares this meeting in such a professional way that every thrower would love to throw here. The structure of the meeting is very important to us. It is the first competition in the season, you’re nervous and do not know where you stand. Therefore, the Werfer Cup is always a good event; it offers always the best conditions. The meeting works pretty smoothly and therefore, the athletes can concentrate on the competition.
After your World, European Championships and the Olympic victory: In recent weeks and months there has been written and said a lot about your motivation. Do you still find it difficult to concentrate and motivate yourself after your first competition?
Last Tuesday I knew I that I have to compete in Wiesbaden. Not because it is required of me to start there, but just because I really want to. Thus, shortly before the first competition it all started again, my adrenaline level went up. That is the feeling I needed. My adrenaline was very high since last summer. I realized that it became less but the desire for competition, the desire for victory is finally back. But I must admit that I’m glad that the rest of the weekend is free and I can concentrate on my technique until the next Diamond League meeting in two weeks in Eugene. I know I can do better than what I did in Wiesbaden.
However, you achieved your 34th consecutive victory. So everything is going as you left off last year?
Well that’s true, and the other throwers see now: “Oh man, Robert is still winning and throwing very far…” From the outside it looks nothing has changed, but the inside looks very different. I noticed since the Olympic victory I clearly have to slow down with my adrenaline household. Many interviews, many events for my sponsors, plus I’m studying too. It is important to get everything on track so that the athletics do not suffer. Therefore, I’m very glad that the competitions have started and that this is what I’m totally focusing on right now.
Your big goal for 2013 is the third World Championship title in a row. Even before you season opening you drew attention to yourself with a very special world record. On Sunday you were undefeated for exactly 1,004 days, since August 2010. What does this record mean to you?
Well, that’s Jürgen Schult’s world record, number one out of two, which is mine now (laughs). It is a good feeling to take this world record from him, even if Jürgen does not care. I am glad that I have been unbeaten for such a long time and this should remain like this.
The world record for the most consecutive victories is 37, held by Virgilijus Alekna …
I will not start at smaller, easier competitions just to get the number of victories high. I will compete against my normal strong competitors. World records are certainly something great, but my main goal of this season is to defend the World Championship title.
Regarding Moscow: What is your schedule for the next few weeks?
I’m going to prepare myself to Eugene which is on in two weeks. I’m going to work on my technique and the flow of movement. I’m so looking forward to Eugene because I will be in a totally different condition and will hopefully produce some good results.
Source: Leichtathletik.de by Julia Nestle