Muriel Hurtis - No Guarantee against Medals
What do Muriel Hurtis, Karin Mayr and Gaby Rockmeier have in common? At the European Indoor Championships in Athletics in Vienna, the three ladies won medals in gold, silver and bronze in the 200 meter event although – or maybe because – they have part-time jobs. The French Muriel Hurtis always trains from 5 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. because during the day she is trained to be an accountant. Apart from this she works at the sports department of Bobigny, a town in the southern suburbs of Paris, where she organizes and promotes sports events four days a week. This is quite down-to-earth for a 23-year-old who became for the second time European Indoor Champion and who holds the French Indoor Record and the World Best Indoor Performance for 2002 with 22,51 seconds for the 200 meters.
Despite her Indoor Title she does not want to be the Favourite for Munich
In Munich the 1,80 meter tall athlete wants to win a medal and improve her personal best at the 200 meter. Because of her height she should actually come off better outdoors than at the narrow track indoors. However in the past she has always been more successful indoors. At the end of June 2001 problems at her sciatica shattered all her hopes to win a medal in the 200 meter event. But after a one month injury lay-off she at least won the bronze medal with the 4x100 meter relay at the World Championships in Edmonton. Muriel does not want to be regarded as the favourite for the European Championships as "one cannot infer my result in Munich from my Indoor title. Moreover sprinters like the Ukrainian Shanna Pintusevich did without the complete indoor season. Hurtis also reckons on the German sprinters – especially Gaby Rockmeier – who could surpass themselves in front of their home crowd.
Munich = Bavarians = Beer
The French knows Germany only from meetings in Dortmund, Cuxhaven, Leverkusen and Stuttgart. "Germans are very hospitable and they love athletics. Unlike in France the stadiums are always full at meetings and the spectators really know a lot about athletics. In August she will visit Munich for the first time in her life. "Everything I know about Munich is that the people there like beer. They are Bavarians, so they like beer.