A WhatsApp message before the final: “Whatever happens, I love you the same.” Is Agueda Marquesthe girlfriend of Adrian Ben. And Adri Ben’s heart “fills” and, as sensitive as he is, he runs in a different way, happy, serene, and stays closer than ever to a medal in the 800-meter World Cup. Four years ago, in Doha, when he was “a pipiolo”, as he puts it, he finished sixth. This Saturday, in Budapest, he was fourth. Intelligent at the beginning and fast at the end, with that placidity that gives you a full life, Ben tried to the finish line and could not.
As in the series and in the semifinals, he made his own career, oblivious to the rest, aware of each of his movements, and in the last stretch he jumped from last to fourth place until he was a breath away from completing the comeback, eight hundredths of a second away. from bronze (1:44.91). Only the Canadian entered the finish line before Marco Aropthe kenyan Emmanuel Wanyonyi and the british Ben Pattison, gold, silver and bronze. Spain was a breath away from decorating the best World Cup in history with a medal on the track: now they only have the option of Mo Katir in the 5,000 meters this Sunday.
Ben’s ‘almost’ was equally meritorious: the demonstration that the national team never had an 800-meter runner like him. Once again, among the best, always compliant, even if he says otherwise. Because it’s true: last year it failed. It really failed. In the World Cup and the European Championship he was eliminated in the semifinals and he began to think that perhaps he had lost his touch, order, even luck – “I was ashamed of the career I did”, he acknowledged – but his environment, especially his coach, Arturo Martin convinced him otherwise. He had spent training, an excess of ambition. He just needed to get back to the plan. And the plan took him to fourth place in the world.
“I’m happy because I’m not happy. I can’t settle. Before I came I would have signed it, but I could have gone with something around my neck, something brilliant,” Ben proclaimed in the mixed zone. He was close, very close. Studious of his own as he is, he had seen all the 800 meter races held in recent years, he knew the phobias and phobias of all his opponents. He knew that he was the fastest over the last 100 meters and that on 1st street he “could find a highway”. “I see a thousand repetitions and the worst that could happen has happened: that three rivals covered me and I had to open up to the street,” he analyzed. He was always smart and fast, but to get his best place in the World Cup, the best place for a Spaniard in history, he needed that placidity that only a full life gives you. Now he only has eight hundredths left over.