Blake eyes faster times and Olympics swansong in 2024: "I know I have a lot left in me."

By October 22, 2023

Yohan Blake, the 2011 World 100m champion, has insisted that he has a lot left in the tank as he begins his preparation to earn a spot on Jamaica’s team to the 2024 Olympic Games in Paris next year.

Blake, who turns 34 in December, missed out on a chance to make his country’s team to the World Championships in Budapest, Hungary in August, but insists he will not be deterred by this most recent setback as he looks forward to suiting up in national colours for his fourth Olympic Games.

“Not everybody can say they have been to four Olympics. I've gone three already and I'm looking forward to this one being my fourth to be honest, I know I have a lot left with me and I know I can spring some surprises. I am just really focusing on just getting this year to start off on a good level,” the 2012 double Olympic silver medallist told Sportsmax.TV on Friday following the launch of his Reviere Purified Water at the AC Hotel in Kingston.

The 2023 season was a challenging one for Blake, who boasts lifetime bests of 9.69 and 19.26 over the 100m and 200m, respectively.

During the season, he failed to break 10 seconds despite coming closest in Poland on July 16 when he ran a time of 10.01. However, he expressed contentment with what has transpired knowing he has a lot to work on for the coming season.

"I've been consistent, running 10-zeros. I never got the 9s, but I am okay with it," Blake reflected. “I've been doing some revision on the last races, the guys have been pulling away from me from the last 40 metres, so I'm doing some work on that.”

That work is being done in a new environment following the break-up of Titans International that sees Blake, Akeem Blake and Briana Williams as well as Frater walking away from the training group that was led by Coach Gregory Little.

With Frater now being totally in charge of his training, Blake expressed confidence that he will make the necessary steps forward in the coming season.

“Michael Frater is an athlete and he's our coach and he really understands me as well. And, you know, I have young Akeem Blake and Briana (Williams) in the camp as well. So we're looking to push each other and now some younger ones as well. We’re looking to push each other and as I said this is my last Olympics,” Blake said.

Frater has made adjustments to Blake’s programme aimed at keeping him sharp and explosive. "He wants to keep me sharp, and he wants me, when I touch the track, to be ready, and be a bit more explosive.”

Blake was once among the most explosive athletes on earth. After defeating Bolt in both the 100m and 200m at the Jamaica national championships in 2012, Blake ran times of 9.75 and 19.44 at the London 2012 Games to win two silver medals to go along with the gold medal in the 4x100m relay in which Jamaica established a world record of 36.84.

He was seemingly poised to challenge Bolt’s world records of 9.58 and 19.19 when a series of injuries derailed him. The worst of those injuries occurred on a cold evening at the Glasgow Grand Prix in July 2014.

“I remember that race clearly in Glasgow when my muscle was frozen. It was really cool and it popped. When I went to the doctor, the doctor said I suffered from muscle spasms,” he said in reflection, adding that some of his injuries were his own doing.

“You know, one of my biggest letdowns in life is I think I worked too hard and I pushed myself too much. I don't know when it’s time to rest and my body is really upset with me sometimes because I do not know when to rest but don't regret any of what happened. It has made me strong as well and I'm here, I'm still running fast,” he said.

“I can get an injury and do surgery and I'm here still running with aluminium in my leg. I'm trying.”

 

 

 

 

 

Leighton Levy

Leighton Levy is a journalist with 28 years’ experience covering crime, entertainment, and sports. He joined the staff at SportsMax.TV as a content editor two years ago and is enjoying the experience of developing sports content and new ideas. At SportsMax.tv he is pursuing his true passion - sports.

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