"Wanders has a team of 14 or 15 Africans who are struck"
It is one of the fashion names in the world of athletics. A avis rare avis ’, a white in an environment where black is as predominant as superior. Julien Wanders is Swiss, but he lives most of the year in Iten and trains as one more in the ‘training camps’ surrounded by Kenyans as laureate as unattainable for the vast majority of human beings on this planet. Wanders renewed his 10k World Record in Valencia a few days ago with a time of 27:13, 19 seconds faster than just over a year ago in South Africa, where he achieved the record with 27:32. For many sections of the race over the city of Turia, he allowed himself the luxury of thinking about winning, but he had to give up before the barbarity that Kipruto achieved, new world record holder with 26:24.
A ‘monacal’ life in Kenya
It is the case that the Swiss is already the holder of the European Half Marathon Record (59:13 in the Arab Emirates less than a year ago) and that he continues to grow with his Iten training group. There he lives like any other local athlete, surrounded by austerity and with a “monacal” routine of training and rest incessantly. A few months ago we chatted on the Corridor Radio with Jonathan Flores, director of the 10k of Laredo (one of the fastest and most prestigious in the world) and who shared routine with Wanders in Kenya for a couple of weeks.
“He is a boy who is among the best athletes in the world counting Africans. Notice, 59:13 in half marathon is a barbarity. He has been there for five years, since he was 18, he spends about eight months a year in the center of Iten, in Kenya, and he lives an African life. I stayed with him at 5:40 in the morning in a typical van that fits 16, 17 people, and we went to the dirt tracks. I went with all his equipment. He has a team of 14 or 15 Africans who were struck during training. Then the second training is about 16. All the rest to rest and sleep, total African life. ”
"Julien is well above the rest of Westerners"
“He is fully established. Also, in Iten, there is nothing. It is a very long straight, with two bars, typical African shops and at 9 at night everything goes out and the day ends. He has managed to adapt and that, together with the brutal conditions he has, because the results are there. ”
“Julien is well above the rest of Westerners. I read an interview recently that he with 18 years tried to come to Kenya a month or so and instead of winning he lost form and had a terrible time. He realized that if he adapted, with time and patience, he could notice the results. And it takes five years. Many people go there and fail. Enduring that is very difficult and then being all day without distractions of any kind is complicated. He could live in a luxurious place, but he lives in a very simple house, without comforts or luxuries of any kind. He wants to live like them and that, in a guy with possibilities like him, is no joke. ”
Do not miss the interview we did a few months ago in Kenya.