Former 100m world record holder, Asafa Powell, was bestowed with the prestigious 2024 Bleu & Bougie Superstar Award at a glittering ceremony held at Devon House in Kingston on Sunday. The esteemed award recognizes Powell's remarkable contributions to track and field, both locally and internationally, marking a crowning achievement in his illustrious career.

Bleu & Bougie and White Soiree En Blanc are popular events staged by Jamaicans in New York City.

Originally scheduled to receive the award on Saturday, Powell graciously accepted the honor on Sunday during the White Soiree En Blanc event, the second day of the Elite Weekend festivities.

Powell, hailed as one of Jamaica’s most decorated athletes, boasts an impressive track record of multiple Olympic and World Championships medals. His remarkable career culminated in his retirement from track and field in 2022, leaving behind a legacy of unparalleled speed and athleticism. Powell has run the 100m dash under 10 seconds, a world record 97 times.

Powell expressed his gratitude for being honoured by a Jamaican organization, especially within the New York Diaspora. "I feel blessed receiving this honour because it shows that I’ve done something legendary to be proud of," he remarked, reflecting on the significance of the recognition.


When asked about his career success, Powell spoke fondly of representing Jamaica on the global stage. "Wearing our national colours at the Olympic or World Championships gave me great joy and had the greatest impact," he reminisced, highlighting the standout moments of his illustrious career.

With the ISSA/GraceKennedy Boys and Girls Championships (Champs) about to begin in Jamaica on Tuesday, Powell revealed limited memories of his days competing at the prestigious 113-year-old high-school championships.

"My memories competing at Champs are not so many. The year I went, I was the only athlete from my school, and making the finals was a big achievement." Despite his limited experience, Powell expressed admiration for the event's enduring success, praising the new generation for carrying on its legacy.

Powell's last attendance at the ISSA Boys and Girls Championships (Champs) was in 2022, as he shared that he visited Ghana in 2023. Expressing gratitude to Jamaicans in New York, Powell conveyed his heartfelt appreciation for the unwavering support he received from the diaspora throughout his career, acknowledging their enduring love and encouragement.

The Bleu & Bougie Superstar Award adds another accolade to Asafa Powell's illustrious career, reaffirming his status as a legendary figure in Jamaican track and field history.

On Thursday, the prestigious Allianz Memorial Van Damme welcomed three track and field legends into its esteemed Hall of Fame. Among the honorees was the Jamaican sprinting sensation Asafa Powell, whose remarkable career includes being a former 100m world record holder and achieving the remarkable feat of running under 10 seconds an astounding 97 times.

The Allianz Memorial Van Damme, a renowned athletics meeting with a storied history dating back to 1977, has decided to establish a Hall of Fame to pay tribute to athletes who have left an indelible mark on the event. This year, the ceremony welcomed not only Asafa Powell but also track and field icons Marie-José Pérec and Sergey Bubka.

Powell, who has long been associated with the Memorial Van Damme, participated in the event nine times between 2003 and 2017. Over the years, he earned his place as a crowd favorite, competing in the 100m at the King Baudouin Stadium and clinching victory on five occasions.

 Wilfried Meert, the former meeting director of the Allianz Memorial Van Damme from 1977 to 2016, recalled Powell's memorable moments, saying, "Powell then won in 9.87, a Jamaican record. That was of course later wiped off the tables by one Usain Bolt. In 2008, Powell almost beat Bolt at the Memorial. Powell was known for his rocket launch while Bolt with his long frame never took off like a spear. Only in the last 20m did  Bolt recover: 9.77 versus 9.83."

 Powell's legacy extends beyond his wins at meetings. Despite his occasional struggles at major championships, he was a key contributor to the Jamaican relay team, clinching gold at the Olympic Games and World Cup.

 In his reaction to the induction, Powell expressed his gratitude, saying, "Honored to be inducted into the hall of fame of the @memorialvandamme along with some legends of the sport. I ran six of my 97 sub-10’s here in Brussels at arguably the best meet in the world. The memories of this place will stay with me forever! I can’t thank Wilfried Meert enough for your support and encouragement through the years. You’ve built an amazing event with creativity and integrity that is second to none. To now be affiliated with the legacy of the meet is truly one of my greatest honors."

Marie-José Pérec and Sergey Bubka, two other track and field legends, were also honored during the ceremony, further cementing the Allianz Memorial Van Damme's commitment to celebrating the history and achievements of the sport.

Born in Guadeloupe in 1968, Pérec won gold in the 400m at the Barcelona Olympics in 1992. Four years later in Atlanta, she defended her title and won Olympic gold in the 200m, a phenomenal double. In addition to three Olympic titles, Pérec also has two world and a European 400m titles.

Bubka broke the pole vault world record 35 times, 17 times outdoor, 18 times indoor. He recorded his best jump 30 years ago 6.15m at a meeting in Donetsk. He jumped 6m or higher 47 times in his career.


Jamaican Olympian and former 100m world-record holder will be a specially invited guest at the United Nation’s “Making a Difference Beyond the Game’ event to be held at in New York on April 6. The event is being held in celebration of International Day of Sport for Development and Peace (IDSDP) that recognizes the positive role sport and physical activity play in the lives of individuals and communities across the globe.

The International Day of Sport for Development and Peace (IDSDP) is an annual celebration of the power of sport to drive social change, community development, and promote peace around the world. The United Nations designated April 6th as IDSDP in 2013, recognizing the role that sports and physical activity play in promoting sustainable development and peace.

The 40-year-old Powell is considered one of the greatest sprinters of all time. He has competed in three Olympic Games as well as several World Championships during a career in which he held 100m world record from 2005 to 2008 and has a personal best of 9.72 that makes him the fourth-fastest man in history.

His athletic career, an example of hard work and dedication, has inspired many young athletes to pursue their dreams.

Making a Difference Beyond the Game will showcase the important role of sports in promoting social inclusion, gender equality, and youth empowerment. It will feature a panel discussion and presentations by experts and athletes as well as interactive activities to engage attendees and highlight the importance of sports in creating a better world.

The International Day of Sport for Development and Peace (IDSDP) is an annual celebration of the power of sport to drive social change, community development, and promote peace around the world. The United Nations designated April 6th as IDSDP in 2013, recognizing the role that sports and physical activity play in promoting sustainable development and peace.

Shouts of ‘Akwaaba!’ (Welcome) reverberated across Kotoka International Airport as Asafa Powell, history’s fourth-fastest man and the first Jamaican to break the 100m world record arrived in Accra, Ghana on Monday.

The former world-record holder will be in Ghana until March 7.

During the trip he will meet and speak with local athletes, pay a courtesy call on the President of the Republic at the Jubilee House and also engage the Ministry of Youth and Sports, the Ghana Olympic Committee and the LOC (Local Organizing Committee) of the African Games Accra 2023 as well as the Ghana Athletics Association on how best Ghana sports can benefit from his huge image on the international sports arena.

Hundreds turned out to see the sprint legend in person as the Ghanaian media lined up for interviews with the now-retired Jamaican Olympian to hear what he and the Ghanaian Olympic Committee (GOC) headed by President Ben Nunoo Mensah, had in store for the athletic community in Ghana.

“The welcome I received upon landing yesterday was truly amazing, the warmth, the music, the dancing and the hospitality was beyond fantastic,” Powell said on Tuesday.

“I feel like I am in my home away from home.”

Powell’s wife Alyshia Powell, who was born and raised in Ghana, was excited to be able to share her homeland, culture and family with her world-famous husband.

Powell began the second day of Ghanaian trip with a visit to Ghana's Youth & Sports Minister, the Honourable Mustapha Ussif.  He and his wife also visited Black Star Square as well as The Ghanaian House of Parliament.

On Wednesday, Powell is scheduled to visit the residence of the late footballer Christian Atsu. While there, he will sign the condolence book for the Ghanaian footballer who perished during the recent earthquake in Turkey that claimed the lives of more than 40,000 people.

He is also scheduled for a media session hosted by the Ghana Olympic Committee at the Accra City Hotel.

On Thursday, Powell and his wife head to the Cape Coast to visit the school she attended as a child as well as to trace his ancestral roots. He will meet some of Alyshia’s family as well as the Chief of Cape Coast.

GOC President Nunoo Mensah thanked corporate Ghana for their swift response in supporting the visit and embracing Powell as their own.

After a career spanning two decades and characterized by fast times and world records but blighted by injury and unfulfilled potential, Jamaican sprinter Asafa Powell has called time on his career.

One of the fastest men to have ever lived, Powell, who celebrated his 40th birthday on November 23, was a trailblazer in an era that produced some of the fastest men in the history of track and field namely Usain Bolt, an eight-time Olympic gold medallist, Nesta Carter, Michael Frater, Yohan Blake and Steve Mullings, among others.

Powell set 100m world records of 9.77 in Athens, Greece in 2005 and 9.74 in Rieti, Italy in 2007. His record was broken by Bolt in New York in 2008 when he ran 9.72 at the Adidas Grand Prix.  Powell lowered his personal best to 9.72 in September 2008, but by then Bolt had taken the record down to 9.69 at the Beijing Olympics.

After breaking 10 seconds for the first time in 2004, Powell went on to run under 10 seconds for the 100m, a record 97 times. It is an achievement that has earned him the moniker ‘Sub-10 King.”

However, despite his amazing talent, Powell never won individual global titles in the blue-riband event. Favoured to win the 100m at the 2004 Olympics in Athens, Powell finished fifth. Four years later, he was fifth at the 2008 Beijing Games.

Powell won the Commonwealth Games 100m title in Australia in 2006 and was favoured to win the 100m at the 2007 World Championships in Osaka, Japan. However, the six-time Jamaican champion was third behind American Tyson Gay, the gold medallist and Bahamian Derrick Atkins, admitting afterwards that he ‘panicked’.

In 2009, Powell ran his best time in a global final – 9.84 at the 2009 World Championships in Berlin, Germany - good enough for bronze behind Usain Bolt, who lowered his own world record to 9.58 with Gay winning silver in a then American record of 9.71.

He was seventh in the 100m final at the London 2012 Games.

Powell won gold medals as a member of Jamaica’s 4x100m relay team at the 2016 Rio Olympics and at the World Championships in 2009 in Berlin and 2015 in Helsinki.

He last ran under 10 seconds in 2016 when he ran 9.92 in Hungary. Injury played a significant role in his inability to continue to break 10 seconds with his fastest time in the last six years being 10.02 in Leverkusen, Germany in 2019.

A favourite of female fans across the globe, Powell announced that his career had come to an end at a lavish birthday party late last week that was attended by several prominent figures from Corporate Jamaica, his shoe sponsor Puma as well as former teammates Bolt, Blake, Frater, Carter and Elaine Thompson-Herah.

His agent Paul Doyle, family, and his closest friends were also in attendance.

On Saturday, he shared the news on Instagram.

“18 years!!! Thanks to my sponsors and loyal fans who have supported me over the years. This sport has given me so many opportunities…but I started my track career in 2002 and have had many ups and downs but was never ungrateful for what I have accomplished,” he said.

“I am entering a new phase and a new chapter of my life and a lot more to come from me. I will continue to inspire the younger generation in every way possible.”

Powell married Canadian model Alyshia Miller in a lavish ceremony before family and friends in Montego Bay 2019 and together have two sons.




Jamaica looks set to qualify a men’s 4x100m relay team for the Tokyo Olympics this summer after running the second-fastest time in the world this year at a time trials meet at GC Foster yesterday.

Double Olympic champion Elaine Thompson-Herah, Olympic and World Championships 400m bronze medalist and former 100m world record holder Asafa Powell have been named to a Jamaican selection that has named to participate in the World Relays set for May 1-2 in Chorzow, Poland.

Jamaican Olympian and former 100m world record holder Asafa Powell said he intends to get to that elusive mark of 100 legal sub-10 times and an Olympic medal before he hangs up his spikes.

A personal health crisis is what Olympian Michael Frater said got him interested in the medicinal benefits of cannabis and eventually led to the opening of the 4/20 Therapeutic Bliss dispensary in Manor Park, Kingston on Saturday.

Frater, 38, represented Jamaica at the senior level for more than a decade, winning gold medals as a member of Jamaica’s world-record-setting 4x100m relay teams at the World Championships in Daegu, South Korea in 2011 and again at the London Olympics in 2012.

He also won a silver medal in the 100m at the 2005 World Championships in Helsinki, Finland. He was also a 100m champion at the 2003 Pan American Games in the Dominican Republic.

However, about five years ago persistent problems with his knees forced him to retire.

At Saturday’s launch, he explained how those knee problems introduced him to the healing properties of cannabis.

“I had very bad knees, and I remember waking up one day, and my knees were swollen, and I couldn’t walk. I went to the University Hospital (of the West Indies) where I met with Dr (Carl) Bruce and ran some tests but nobody could figure out what was wrong,” he told the gathering that included Jamaica’s Minister of Sports Olivia Grange, former world record holder Asafa Powell and Jamaica and West Indies cricketer Chris Gayle.

Christopher Samuda, President of the Jamaica Olympic Association and Ali McNab, an advisor to the sports minister were also in attendance and were in rapt attention as Frater shared his harrowing experience.

“I had an IAAF (World Athletics) function in Monaco. I remember leaving on Monday and got there on Tuesday and I couldn’t even walk off the plane. They had to send a wheelchair for me,” he recalled.

Initially, doctors in Monaco believed his condition was the result of doping, he said, but subsequent tests disproved their theories even though they were still unable to determine what was the cause of the constant swelling and fluid build-up in his knees.

He spent two weeks in hospital there where doctors ‘patched’ him up enough to enable him to fly home.

A subsequent visit to a medical facility in Florida was also unable to help him get any closer to identifying what was wrong with his knees, he said which left him fearing he would spend the rest of his life in a wheelchair.

It was then that his father, Lindel Frater, suggested he tried cannabis oil. He tried it and within a month he felt ‘brand new’, he said.

“I started studying a lot about it and realized that a drug that has been taboo for most of my life is really a miracle drug. It’s really a drug that once taken properly with the proper prescription, the medicinal purposes are exponential.”

Minister Grange applauded the retired Olympian and praised him for his initiative in opening the dispensary. She eventually made the first purchase of medicinal marijuana. Samuda also shared similar sentiments while praising Frater for his venture into the cannabis industry.

Gayle, meanwhile, said Frater’s venture was an example for other retired athletes to emulate.

“I am a big supporter of Michael's career and now his business venture, and from a sportsman's point of view, there is life after your original career and to actually venture in a business is good for him and we are here to support him 100 per cent,” said Gayle.

Powell, who was Frater’s teammate on several national teams, said, his friend and colleague, was always a budding entrepreneur.

“From ever since, Michael has always been the brains among all of us. He has always been driven, business-oriented. I have always admired that about him,” said the former 100m world record holder who brought his wife Alyshia along.

“It’s kind of intimidating sometimes when you’re talking to him, and he is saying some stuff I don’t even know about, so I have always known he would make this step into business.

“He keeps pushing and I am very, very happy for him.”

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