Ferdinand Omanyala, the African record holder for the men's 100m, has unveiled a strategic shift in his approach to the upcoming season, with a pronounced focus on international competitions over local races.
The Commonwealth Games 100m champion expressed his intent to limit his participation in domestic events to a maximum of three races, as he aims for a second Olympic appearance at the Paris Games in 2024.
Speaking about his revised strategy, Omanyala stated, “Going into next year, we are going to be very strategic, and now that I have a professional team, we are going to choose races. So, next year, you won’t be seeing a lot of me especially in Kenya. At most, it will be three (races in Kenya). We are mostly targeting the international competitions, the Diamond Leagues, that is where the competition is. That is where the iron sharpens iron.”
Acknowledging the allure of the professional scene, Omanyala emphasized the shift from the excitement of frequent competitions.
"When you get into the professional scene, there is always a lot of excitement. You always want to travel the world and be in a lot of competitions, but now we are past that. I’ve done that for two seasons," Omanyala stated.
Reflecting on a demanding year that saw him participate in 38 races, including prestigious Diamond League events in Monaco, Rabat, Paris, and Citta Di’Lucca, Omanyala secured a notable third-place finish in the men’s 100m at the Prefontaine Classic Diamond League Meeting in the United States.
Despite facing challenges, such as a disappointing seventh-place finish at the World Championships in Budapest, Omanyala remains undeterred.
Locally, he captivated Kenyan audiences at the Kip Keino Classic World Continental Tour Gold and the Athletics Kenya Track and Field Weekend Meeting at Nyayo Stadium.
Looking ahead, Omanyala expressed unwavering confidence and revealed a unique approach to the upcoming season.
"It’s a great start to the season and the way I am feeling right now is the way I have been feeling since June. I am really excited for the next season but I have told myself that this will be a season of faith…not being overconfident but strategic and stepping into every week the way it comes," he said.