Thompson-Herah's season-debut 7.19 60m "felt good...but it wasn't about the time"

By January 30, 2022

In her first race since her incredible 2021 season, five-time Olympic gold medalist Elaine Thompson-Herah said she felt really good after winning the 60-metre dash at the Queens/Grace Jackson meet at the Stadium East in Kingston on Saturday.

Running into a stiff headwind of – 1.9m/s, the fastest woman alive clocked 7.19 to win ahead of Remona Burchell, who ran 7.29 and Sprintec teammate Shashalee Forbes 7.37.

“The run felt good. It was my first time in spikes since the start of this season,” Thompson-Herah told Sportsmax.TV.

"Obviously, the -1.9 wind would be a factor in the time (but) the run wasn’t about time. It was just to get a race at the end of a very heavy week, to see how I would feel and I felt great.”

No longer with MVP Track Club and under the guidance of its globally respected head coach Stephen Francis, Thompson-Herah now trains under the watchful eye of her husband Derron Herah and has reportedly set several targets for this season when she will go for her first world title in Eugene, Oregon in July.

On the basis of what she accomplished on Saturday, she is off to a good start

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.

Related items

  • Tyra Gittens: Overcoming adversity and redefining her path to Olympic glory Tyra Gittens: Overcoming adversity and redefining her path to Olympic glory

    At just 25 years old, Tyra Gittens has already etched her name in the annals of collegiate track and field as an 18-time NCAA Division 1 All-American and a three-time NCAA Champion. Her journey to the pinnacle of American collegiate sports was marked by triumphs in the heptathlon, long jump and high jump which showcased her versatility and athleticism.

    However, Gittens' path has not been without its challenges. Following her successful collegiate career, which culminated in gold in the heptathlon despite an ankle injury, Gittens faced a setback in 2023 with a retroactive drug suspension due to an expired Therapeutic Use Exemption (TUE) certificate. This suspension not only affected her competitive results but also tested her resolve and commitment to the sport she loves.

    In an exclusive interview with Sportsmax.TV, Gittens opened up about the hurdles she faced in recent years and her journey towards redemption as she prepares for the upcoming Olympic Games in Paris.

    “It has been a process, I will tell you,” Gittens shared when asked about her preparation. “I feel like this year has been a year of rebuilding. I’m in a new body and a new mindset. I’ve never been in this mindset, never been in this body, so I am excited to see what my limits are. I think something big is going to happen this year.”

    Transitioning from the demanding heptathlon to specializing in the long jump has required adjustments in Gittens' training regimen. "My training has been different because I am no longer doing the heptathlon," she explained. "I've been learning different techniques in the long jump and also on the track, finally learning how to sprint. I feel like I’ve fallen into a very professional body, not just college."

    Gittens’ post-collegiate journey was not without bumps in the road. The year 2023 began well enough with the USA-based Trinidadian signing a professional contract with Puma but barely a month later, things took a downward turn.

    World Athletics’ Athletics Integrity United (AIU) ruled that she was ineligible to compete for six months after a sample she provided in June 2022 was found to contain methylphenidate/ritalinic acid, a prohibited substance that is an ingredient of the medication she takes for ADHD. At the time the sample was taken, Gittens’ TUE had expired.

     However, the AIU said it accepted that she had not realized that her previous TUE had expired by the time that the first sample was taken at the national Trinidad and Tobago championships on June 26, 2022.

    “She was not advised that the TTO Sample was positive for methylphenidate, or that her TUE had expired for this purpose, until November 2022, after the sample collected from her at the World Championships on July 23, 2022,” the AIU said adding that they also accepted that Gittens had no information at the time of her second World Athletics sample that her TUE application was incomplete.

    “The AIU also accepts that the medication was used for legitimate medical reasons and the athlete did not intend to cheat. Accordingly, the AIU accepts that the violation was not ‘intentional’.”

    It was a blot on her resume that she could have done without and one that was hard for her to take.

    Reflecting on the challenges of her suspension and the mental toll it took, Gittens likened it to one of the toughest periods of her life. "It was probably the hardest thing I ever had to deal with," she admitted. "I always compare it to the year I lost my brother. This period of my life, these last two years, that was definitely second."

    "After college, I was burnt out physically and mentally. I don’t know how I went on to Tokyo (Olympics) because my body was completely done. Tokyo was sheer will," Gittens continued. "But after that, I crashed. I didn’t have the motivation for track anymore because I gave it my all that year. It was challenging, but in that challenge, I found some serious guidance. I found my system for success and have been using it religiously to push myself to new heights."

    As she soars towards those new heights, 2024 has largely been good to her so far. With leaps of 6.56, 6.68 and a windy 6.72m, Gittens’ progress has been trending along an upward trajectory as she nears competing at her national championships next month.

    She attributed her renewed focus and resilience to adopting a growth mindset. "The growth mindset is just a theory that all things can be achieved with hard work and effort," she explained. "It’s about how you handle failure, how you view fear. Instead of seeing failure as the end, I view it as a new opportunity to try a new way. With a growth mindset, I believe that everything I put my mind to and apply effort towards, I can improve."

    Looking ahead to the Olympic Games, Tyra Gittens is determined to exceed her expectations and make her mark in the world of track and field. With a newfound perspective and a relentless work ethic, she is poised to inspire both on and off the track as she chases Olympic glory.

     

     

     

     

  • Pinnock jumps 8.03m to book spot at NCAA Division I Outdoor Championships Pinnock jumps 8.03m to book spot at NCAA Division I Outdoor Championships

    World Championship silver medallist Wayne Pinnock has officially booked his spot in the field for next month’s NCAA Division I Outdoor Championships.

    The 23-year-old Arkansas junior, who won gold at the 2022 NCAA Championships, produced 8.03m at the NCAA West First Round in Fayetteville on Wednesday to advance with the day’s second furthest jump behind USC’s Johnny Brackins who jumped a personal best 8.15m to advance.

    Another Jamaican, Oklahoma junior Nikaoli Williams, produced a personal best 7.99 to book his spot in the 24-man field set to compete from June 5-8 at Hayward Field in Oregon.

    Arizona State junior Brandon Lloyd threw 19.26m to secure qualification in the men’s shot put.

    On the track, a number of Caribbean men booked spots in Friday’s quarterfinal round to determine who will make the trip to Oregon.

    Trinidadian Minnesota junior Devin Augustine (10.28), Jamaican USC junior Travis Williams (10.30) and Jamaican Baylor sophomore Riquan Graham (10.32) all made it through to the quarterfinals of the men’s 100m.

    Augustine also ran 20.66 to advance in the 200m.

    The top 12 fastest men from Friday’s quarterfinals will advance to the NCAA Championships.

    In the 400m, Jamaican Texas Tech sophomore Shaemar Uter (45.68), Jamaican Baylor senior Demar Francis (45.75) and Grenadian Arizona State senior Gamali Felix (45.90) advanced to the quarterfinals.

    A pair of Jamaicans, Texas A&M junior Kimar Farquharson and Iowa junior Rivaldo Marshall, ran 1:47.72 and 1:48.31, respectively, to advance to the quarterfinals of the 800m.

    Jamaican Arkansas senior Phillip Lemonious and UTEP junior Jordani Woodley advanced in the 110m hurdles with times of 13.38 and 13.41, respectively.

    Lemonious is the defending NCAA champion.

    The 2024 NCAA Division I Outdoor Track and Field Championships is set for June 5-8 at Hayward Field in Eugene, Oregon.

     

  • Jamaican quarter-miler Ackeem Bloomfield retires at age 27 Jamaican quarter-miler Ackeem Bloomfield retires at age 27

    Jamaican quarter-miler Ackeem Bloomfield has announced his retirement from track and field at the age of 27, Sportsmax.TV has confirmed.

     The two-time World Championship 4x400m relay silver medalist has reportedly informed the Jamaica Athletics Administrative Association of his decision and has also requested to be removed from the Registered Testing Pool (RTP) with the Jamaica Anti-Doping Commission (JADCO). Marie Tavares, Executive Board Member of the JAAA confirmed Bloomfield’s retirement on Thursday, saying “He has. I got confirmation yesterday, either yesterday of the day before.”

    Tavares opined that it sounds as if Bloomfield, a former Kingston College star, will be concentrating on his academics but was otherwise uncertain about his motivations.

    Bloomfield, who holds the distinction of being the second-fastest Jamaican ever over 400m with a personal best of 43.94 seconds, first burst onto the scene as a promising young talent. He became the first Jamaican schoolboy to break the 45-second barrier, a feat that heralded a bright future in athletics. However, his career trajectory was hindered by a series of prolonged injuries and personal challenges, including the emotional toll of his mother's death in 2021.

    After a standout collegiate career at Auburn University, where he set his remarkable 400m time at the NCAA National Outdoor Championships in 2018, Bloomfield signed with Puma and joined the MVP International training group in Florida. His talent and potential were on full display at the 2019 World Athletics Championships, where he finished eighth in the 400m final with a time of 45.36 seconds.

    In 2021, seeking a fresh start and recovery from a debilitating hamstring injury, Bloomfield moved to train with Rana Reider’s Tumbleweed group, where he reunited with high school rival and Calabar star athlete Christopher Taylor. Bloomfield declared himself fully recovered and expressed optimism about his future in the sport. “It was a really bad injury to my right hamstring. I did an intensive rehab process after I got injured. Even though I shut down my season I was still doing rehab. So, I can say for the most part, right now I’m 100 percent healthy,” he said in an interview with On Point.

    Despite his determination, Bloomfield’s journey continued to be marked by transitions. In September 2022, he left Tumbleweed to train under former Jamaican Olympian Sanjay Ayre at Chase Athletics Track Club. However, he departed from Chase Athletics a year later, signaling the turbulence that characterized the latter part of his career.

    Bloomfield’s last known competitive performance was at the Tom Jones Invitational in April 2023, where he ran 45.52 seconds to finish sixth. This race marked the end of a career that, despite its ups and downs, offered glimpses of what could have been.

© 2023 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.