Jah-Nhai Perinchief entered the Texas Tech Open without any expectations at the weekend.
The Bermuda high jumper set a meet record competing for Texas Tech with a leap of 2.12 metres to claim the title in style.
“I just looked at the performance and was like. Hey, I got the meet record. That’s cool’,” Perinchief said.
“I didn’t really have fall training, so this is kind of like my fall training and my boots were really tightening up. That’s why I didn’t finish my third attempt, which would have been my ticket punch to nationals. I have full confidence that I’m going to qualify, so I wasn’t really too worried about that.
“I was just happy I executed the approach properly, how the coach wanted me to, and I actually got a chance to jump at a high bar again.”
Donna Raynor, the Bermuda National Athletics Association president, was thrilled with the high jumper’s exploits.
”Breaking a school-university record is always an enormous feat and we, the BNAA, are excited with Jah-Nhai’s early performances representing Texas Tech,” she said.
“Our hope is that Jah-Nhai can stay injury free as he is a great candidate to qualify for the Pan Am Games [in Lima, Peru, this summer] and possibly the IAAF World Championships this year.”
Perinchief’s display suggests his injuries woes, which have plagued him the past two years, are now behind him.
“It’s been two years of injuries, so we made a new approach that puts less stress on my body when training,” he said. “I have squatted and cleaning the most I’ve done in the weight room.”
Rohaan Simons, the national jumping coach, added: “It’s been a long two years with injuries hampering his jumping and he is now enjoying an injury-free experience at Texas Tech.
“He is just ready to grow and improve in the rest of the time he has in his collegiate career.”