Jah-Nhai Perinchief showed off his versatility by finishing third in the triple jump, in a personal best distance, on the first day of the Texas Tech Shootout at the Sports Performance Centre on Friday.
Primarily a high jumper, the 21-year-old Bermudian jumped 16.439 metres on his second attempt to break his previous personal record by 13 inches.
“It was surprising to me,” said Perinchief, who did not start competing in the triple jump until two years ago in junior college at Iowa Central.
“I’m still eager to want to go and jump more. It’s my first time jumping in a year, since my [hamstring] injury. It felt smooth and felt easy. It’s the easiest I’ve felt triple jumping in my life, so I’m really happy with that.”
The mark had put Perinchief in first place at the time. After he passed on his remaining jumps, he ultimately finished third behind Odaine Lewis and Chengetayi Mapaya.
Perinchief’s performance impressively ranks as the sixth best jump in the NCAA Division I, pending the outcomes of meets elsewhere from the weekend.
Perinchief said he had not practised the triple jump at all this season. “This was my practice,” he said of Friday’s competition.
“I’ve always said to myself — I’ve never really had a season where I took triple jump fully serious — so I always said to myself, once I got into the right environment and actually start getting some reps in, I think I would jump pretty far,”
“I never really limit myself. If I jump good, I’m happy. If I jump bad, ‘OK, what can we fix next to get me out to an elite level?’”.
His latest success comes off the back of high-jump glory at the Texas Tech Open where Perinchief set a meet record competing for Texas Tech with a leap of 2.12 metres to claim the title in style.
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.”