Ghana’s high flying sprinter, Hor Halutie, is looking forward to bigger exploits on the international stage after helping Ghana to qualify for this year’s IAAF World Championships in Doha, Qatar.
Hor was part of Ghana’s female sprints quartet (which included Flings Owusu-Agyapong, Gemma Acheampong, Persis William-Mensah) that clocked 44.77 seconds to finish seventh at the IAAF World Relays in the Japanese city of Hiroshima last week.
Now the youngster is turning her attention to the 2019 Africa Games (formerly All Africa Games) in the Moroccan city of Rabat in August and the September 28-October 6 Championships in Doha.
Last year, the young sprinter made a faster-than-expected transition from an inexperienced local athlete to Ghana’s flying star at the Commonwealth Games in Gold Coast, Australia, where she reached the final of the women’s 100 metres.
Even though she was only a part of Ghana’s six-member relay team at the Games, the former T.I. Ahmadiyya SHS student was encouraged to give the short sprints a try in her first major international meet and she performed beyond expectations, a feat which even earned her the 2018 SWAG Prospect of the Year award at the recent MTN SWAG Awards in Accra.
A year ago, the shy athlete, a native of Nmanduonu in the Upper West Region of Ghana, became the star athlete of the GAA Circuit championship in Cape Coast, winning the sprints double with new records in the 100 m and 200m races. It was only the beginning of bigger things to come.
Sponsorship by a Ghanaian organisation, Just Because Fitness, and a training opportunity at the Middle Tennessee State University under the watchful eyes of a former national athlete, Andrew Owusu, and athletics coach, Dean Hayes, has changed career course for the better.
Hor Halutie training in the USA
In an exclusive interview at the Alisa Hotel last Wednesday, Hor could not hide her excitement at her transformation and also shared with the Graphic Sports her motivation and how her dreams were shaping up.
“It’s a good year for me and I am happy about what is going on in my life because I work hard and I get people to support me, and I think that has helped me to go forward. Everything that you are doing in this world that is from your heart, it will take you to places,” she said.
For the youngster, her biggest motivation has always been her personal drive and desire to succeed. “If someone told me that I would go far in my career I will say that person was right because when I set my mind to do something I do it.
"I just started schools sports after 2014 after writing my Basic Education Certificate Exams (BECE). I did not start running from my childhood days yet I am doing well.”
Touching on how her experience in the USA had impacted her running style and performance, the sprints sensation admitted that she had seen improvements due to advanced training methods with experienced coaches she worked with.
“The facilities that they have, we don’t have them in Ghana and even those that we have in Ghana we don’t know how to use them. Over there, they will explain to you what the effect and results the various training equipment will bring to you so as you are training you are aware of the outcome that you will gain at the end of the day so you understand what you are doing.
“My coach will always explain those things to me even before we start training. Now I can say that for the period that I stayed in the USA, my running has changed because if you watch my videos you will see that the way that I was running in the Commonwealth Games has changed. Now I am running more flexibly than before although I am not perfect yet.”
Hor Halutie in the gym at Middle Tennessee State University