Arturo Martín: the writer of the miracle of Fernando Carro
He was the man who stopped Carro dry when he became discouraged from the Rio 2016 Olympic Games with the feeling that he was in decline and that this train had passed for him. "It is impossible. You are 24 years old, ”he told her.
I had warned him: "Fernando, do not give up in the first 1,000 and do not think of passing it to 2'38" because that is not our rhythm. "
And Fernando, who has taken 27 years of his life to run in Monaco, the Diamond of Monaco, had heard him. Fernando always listens to Arturo. Not doing so would be like opening a book on the last page: missing the best.
And Fernando had prepared this race as if it were the career of his life. And I knew it was fine. In fact, the same morning of the race, the last time Arturo spoke to him again on the phone, he reminded him again in the first person of the plural that “we are down from 8’10”. No need to remind him "how long we had been waiting for a race like this." It was not necessary, because Fernando was seen in his eyes, in the trot of 15'00 ”he did in the morning, in the way he went to look for that physiotherapist to relieve his tendon, the tendon that was bothering
Arturo is Arturo Martín: the coach. A man from the Moratalaz neighborhood who has hardly ever appeared in the media and that Friday, Friday of the Diamond of Monaco, was working for the Federation in the European Under-23 of Sweden. But inwardly I kept thinking of Monaco, the damn law of opportunity. "Fernando has never run a race like this and the big brands are made in the big races," He said and told himself.
At the time of the race, Arturo went down to a cafeteria in front of the hotel. He ordered a beer and a hamburger. It is not known whether to calm hunger or nerves. He does know that his heart was already pounding like when he was an athlete because Arturo was also an athlete. A good midfielder who made 4’13 ”in 1,500 obstacles or 5’29” in 2,000 meters on the indoor track. A man who, since he was 19, is a coach. A man with more prestige in the profession than popularity in the world and the one I have in front of me this afternoon. We are in no hurry: we have all the time ahead. But, as in the races that last eight minutes, you have to hit the key quickly. If the conversation gets too long it will be a problem: I distrust the long conversations in which one ends up asking for the time. The reader does not forgive.
Arturo was in Sweden that night in which Fernando Carro was going to make 8’05 ″ 69 in 3,000 obstacles. Arturo was going to open the door of his room at the hotel that night, to call his wife who one day approved the fourth attempt to oppose the teacher ("and that is life: try and try again"); not to sleep and to get excited watching Fernando Carro's career over and over again. Before I came to ask him, he had already asked: “What if Fernando never do 8’05 ″ 69 again?
It could happen, but as in the movies no one can eliminate that day from their lives.
I will follow writing that it was a miracle and Arturo Martín will continue to answer that "miracles do not exist". But he will admit that that night “was something exceptional, because it is not normal to beat a record in Spain that had been 17 years. Unlike. The normal thing is not to beat it. But we are here, working in a High Performance Center, to look for the exceptional ”.
Today is Monday afternoon, Arturo has no double session, but when he finishes talking to me he will go home and continue working. Thus the exceptional is sought. And sometimes it is found.
And when he finds himself in Monaco, such wonderful things happen as that night in which, as soon as he finished the race, Pablo Sánchez, Adrián Ben and Agueda Muñoz, athletes who were with Arturo Martín in Sweden, rushed to him to hug him with the feeling that something unrepeatable had happened: 8'05 ″ 69. We still have a hard time writing it without spelling mistakes: things of pride, incontestable, reasonable.
“The last 1,000 with three estuaries came out in 1’00,” recalls Arturo Martín, who is not a man of many words but enough: The words are part of the trainers' toolbox. Words are the words that put success to words, which always remind us that life is worth it.
He may or may not leave, but there will almost always be an opportunity for him to leave.
Three years ago, after returning defeated from the Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro 2016, Fernando no longer believed in that opportunity. He had been injured by jumping the first obstacle and, although he managed to finish the race, not even that show of honesty was enough to cheer him up. "He came saying he was in decline," Arturo recalls. "That perhaps he had already done enough to be in a World Cup, in some Olympics with the feeling that this was over, that he would not be able to train so much."
Arturo asked him then:
-How old are you?
-24, I'm 24.
-Your career is not ending then it is starting -the coach made him see, who faced the hard task of reforming the house.
"But I couldn't have done it without your help or that of your surroundings," he adds. If we suffer we have to suffer all. And then we all work together to recover Fernando's best condition, constancy, and we recover it, Because Fernando loves to run. He needs to run. It is his way of feeling free like that of others it can be singing, writing ... whatever.
And today is so much happiness that this deserves the lyrics of a song. Fernando is in Navacerrada these days "escaping the heat of Madrid", and his coach Arturo Martín, with a polo shirt of the Federation, here with me, in the shade in a park in Madrid, answering questions, making us see that, at his age, one already knows how to tame the triumph.
Because it was not always like that and because it has also been bad.
Arturo Martín was the coach of Alberto García, the athlete who tested positive for EPO after being a 5,000 European champion. I know it's not funny that he remembers, but journalism is reviewing everything, good and bad. "It's the other part of my biography," he admits. "Athletes are people who make decisions that sometimes it is not fair to affect a group, a coach, a whole environment ... but ... I was left with a clear conscience, but I felt a personal failure, because no I knew how to convey that this should never be done, but… ”
- But you never noticed anything strange?
- No, and maybe I was too naive ... But I didn't notice it, no.
- That made him better or worse person?
-I do not know.
-That's for sure.
16 years later, Arturo is the same man who raised his head ("life goes on"), the same as He says out loud: "Fernando has nothing to hide." The same one who remembers that Fernando has been worth less than 8'15 ”before he did it this June in Rome,“ but the brands have to be made ”. The same, in short, that in 2010 made Arturo Casado European champion of 1,500 in Barcelona, “but what was worth more, that or when he was fourth in Valencia or fifth in Helsinki? ”
With that question, it shows that life is a trajectory. That life is effort. Fernando has arrived this winter at 170 km per week. Fernando lives 24 hours a day for and for this. Fernando has a treasure stuck in his head that helps him make up to three days of series a week ...
Fernando, in fact, is that man who has tattooed the name of Arturo on his skin. And that of Jesús del Pueyo, who was his first coach. And this is not aesthetic: these are values, which maybe Someday they belong to the first white athlete to lose 8’00 ”in the 3,000 obstacles. And, although today seems like a miracle, there is a door in real life that is not closed.