Ex-Olympian gets Castleford on track


Former Jamaican Olympian Marcel Gray paid a visit to Castleford this week, to pass on some sprint training tips ahead of the 2010 Super League season.

The unique pre-season plan to inject an extra yard of pace throughout the team and enhance the Tigers title ambitions in 2010 was devised by Multipower, official sports nutrition supplier to both Gray and the Tigers.

Gray, who was trained by Usain Bolt’s coach, Glen Mills and competed at both the 1984 and 1988 Olympics, ran a sub 10 seconds 100m sprint at his peak. He is currently in training for the World Masters Indoor Championships in Canada in March. Gray also has a strong background in sprint coaching and in 2009 set up the ‘Sprint Factory’ in Wales, which aims to nurture the next generation of sprinting talent.

During the 30 minute training session, Gray took the Tigers back to sprint basics, fine tuning the players’ technique, before introducing some drills and a series of short sprints to help improve explosive speed.

Speaking after the training, Gray commented: “I was thrilled to be asked to help Castleford Tigers with their sprinting. It’s been great working with them and all the guys seemed really keen to improve. Anyone can learn to run quicker, even the prop forwards – it’s all about technique, so during the session we covered the fundamentals, including how to make the best use of the arms to help gain those extra yards.

“I wish the Tigers the best of luck for the coming season – I’ll be following their progress with interest and hope that some of my advice pays off.”

Castleford Tigers Head Coach, Terry Matterson said, “Marcel really put the team through their paces on the pitch today and they gained a lot from the coaching session. Speed is crucial in Rugby and it can really transform a player’s game.
“The quicker you can run from the defender, the more time you have to think, which gives you a big advantage over the opposition. To learn from an Olympic sprinter has been fantastic and hopefully we’ll have the chance to work with Marcel again as the season progresses.”

Marcel Gray’s coaching session isn’t the first time the club has been linked with sprinting. In 2008 British sprinter Dwain Chambers agreed a month trial with Castleford Tigers. The club decided against offering Chambers a permanent contract.

The Tigers face last year’s champions Leeds Rhinos, in their first game of Super League XV, on February 5 at Headingley.

Castleford Tigers and Marcel Gray use Multipower sport nutrition products as a key training partner to help prepare for, compete and recover from competition, for further information please visit www.multipoweruk.com