Jah-Nhai Perinchief inspired by World Indoor Championships debut
Jah-Nhai Perinchief is adamant the best is yet to come after offering another glimpse of his potential on his debut at the World Athletics Indoor Championships in Belgrade, Serbia, last Friday.
The 24-year-old finished fifth while competing in the triple jump final after leaping to a new indoor personal best in the Štark Arena with an effort of 16.95 metres (55ft 7¼in), which he achieved on his fourth attempt.
“I am happy about the PB but I know it could have been way further than 16.95,” Perinchief told The Royal Gazette. “I am happy about it but like I’ve said before I know I have more in the tank.
“That’s the positive I take away from it for my first championships, and it’s very rare you have people that go to their first one and even make finals.”
Perinchief, who was the second-youngest in the field, fouled on three of his six attempts.
His remaining legal jumps were measured at 16.36 and 16.59, achieved either side of his new indoor best, which eclipsed the 16.91 set on the way to victory last month at the Tyson Invitational meet in Fayetteville, Arkansas, the world-leading jump at the time.
“‘I fouled a big one that possibly could have had me in medal contention on my first attempt,” he said. “I felt a little fatigued throughout the competition, but other than that I gave it my all.”
Cuban Lázaro Martínez won the gold medal with a leap of 17.64, the best in the world this year, with Portugal’s Pedro Pichardo (17.46) and American Donald Scott (17.21) securing the silver and bronze respectively.
“Overall it was a good experience,” Perinchief added. “It was fun.
“I got to compete against some people I actually watch on YouTube when I watch films, Will (Claye) and Pichardo, so that was exciting. It was a good field of people and Lázaro is a good talent as well.
“I remember him from the World Under-20 Championships and stuff when I was doing high jumping. And, just like a lot of other people, people have injuries, go missing and come back even better, so that was good to see. It was exciting to watch everybody jumping, and just even to be able to push myself to be better was great.”
Perinchief did not meet the qualifying standard of 17.10 metres but was granted a spot by World Athletics based on a string of recent impressive performances competing on the United States indoor circuit.
He got his professional career off to a brilliant start after earning the silver medal on his debut at the New Balance Indoor Grand Prix at the Ocean Breeze Athletic Complex in Staten Island, New York, last month with a mark of 16.55.
The recently-crowned Male Athlete of the Year for 2021 has enjoyed numerous success throughout his sparkling career.
He won NJCAA National Championship titles in the high jump and triple jump and was named All-American seven times while attending Iowa Community College.
Perinchief also thrived at the United States collegiate level while competing for University of Tennessee.
He won gold at the Southeastern Conference Championships with a wind- assisted 16.89 as a senior last year to become the first Tennessee triple jump champion in 34 years.
He then claimed silver at the NCAA Championships with a new best leap of 17.03, which broke the previous Tennessee record of 16.94 that had stood for 36 years.
Perinchief also won silver and bronze medals in the high jump at the Carifta Games in Martinique and CAC Junior Championships in Morelia, Mexico, in 2014.
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