Five-time Olympic gold medalist Elaine Thompson-Herah created quite a stir last week Wednesday, October 5, at the Princess Margaret School in St. John's, Antigua.

Double Olympic champion Elaine Thompson-Herah was narrowly beaten by American Sha’Carri Richardson in the Women’s 100m at the Luzern World Athletics Continental Tour-Silver Meet in Switzerland on Tuesday.

In -2.0 second winds, Thompson-Herah ran 11.30 to narrowly finish behind Richardson (11.29). The USA’s Celera Barnes ran 11.40 for third.

Jamaica’s Natasha Morrison was victorious in the B-final in 11.42 ahead of Egypt’s Bassant Hemida (11.44) and Gambia’s Gina Bass (11.50).

On the Men’s side, World Championship semi-finalist Ackeem Blake ran 10.22 for third behind Commonwealth champion Ferdinand Omanyala of Kenya (10.18) and American World Championship silver medallist Marvin Bracy (10.17).

By her own very high standards, double Olympic champion Elaine Thompson-Herah has not quite achieved the soaring heights of the Tokyo Games this season but insists she is still finding her way around a new system.

On the back of a season where she claimed the sprint double at the Olympics, and went on to register the second fastest time ever recorded for a woman over 100m, Thompson-Herah was in the news again following the announcement to split from longtime coach Stephen Francis.

If the majority of the athlete’s times and performances are anything to judge by that decision, an alliance with husband Derron Herah is yet to bear fruit.

“My expectations coming off last year were high and I was looking forward to this year.  Right now, the way I want my story to be written is not the way I want it to go but whatever God has in store he will put it together at the right time,” Thompson-Herah told members of the media ahead of Friday’s Diamond League meet.

“I’m just staying patient and I’ll keep working.  I always wanted to get my first World title but I’m still working towards that, I want that to be a part of my tally to be a defending World champ.  I was really grateful and excited to achieve my first 100m medal, a bronze…the 200m was not the best but I’ve moved past that,” she added.

“I think I’m having a good season so far.  The fact that I’m adjusting to a new system, new coach, and everything.  I’m still learning.”

After missing out on the World Championship titles Thompson-Herah went on to win the sprint double at the Commonwealth Games.

Could Shely-Ann Fraser Pryce's meet record of 10.60 be on borrowed time when three of the four fastest women in the world this year line up for the 100m at the Lausanne Diamond League meeting on August 26?

Trinidad and Tobago and Jamaica won sprint relay medals on Sunday with silver and bronze medals, respectively, at the 2022 Commonwealth Games in Birmingham, England.

Despite the absence of 200m champion Jereem Richards Trinidad and Tobago’s team of Jerod Elcock, Eric Harrison Jr, Kion Benjamin Hislop and Kyle Greaux raced to a season-best 38.70 to claim second place behind England that ran a season-best 38.35 for the gold medal.

Nigeria ran 38.81 for the bronze.

Meanwhile, Jamaica’s women owe a debt of gratitude to sprint-double champion Elaine Thompson-Herah for their bronze medal as Kemba Nelson, Remona Burchell and Natalliah Whyte were unable to put Jamaica in contention for a medal over the first three legs.

However, at the final exchange with Jamaica in fifth, the fastest woman alive, stormed down the home stretch to snatch the bronze medal from Australia.

Jamaica clocked a relatively pedestrian 43.08, well behind England who ran a season-best 42.41 for the silver and winners Nigeria, who stormed to a new area record of 42.10.

Australia clocked 43.16 for fourth.

Jamaica’s Elaine Thompson-Herah successfully completed the sprint double at the Birmingham Commonwealth Games after dominating the women’s 200m on Saturday.

Days after claiming her first 100m title at the Games, the Jamaican stormed away from the field to stop the clock at 22.02 a new Games record.  The sprinter got off to a solid start and nearly covered the field by the curve before pulling away down the stretch.

Nigeria’s Favour Ofili was second in 22.51, with Namibia’s Christine Mboma third in 22.80.  The second Jamaican in the race Natalliah Whyte missed out on the medal podium after finishing fourth in 23.06.    

 

Jamaican World Championships silver medallist Shanieka Ricketts went one better at the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham on Friday, taking gold in the Women’s triple jump.

Ricketts, who got silver four years ago, won with a Commonwealth Games record 14.94m which she did in the first round.

Dominica’s Thea Lafond made it a Caribbean 1-2 by taking the silver with 14.39m ahead of England’s Naomi Metzger (14.37m).

Elaine Thompson-Herah will get an opportunity to win her second gold medal after advancing to the final of the Women’s 200m.

The double Olympic champion, who ran 10.95 to win the 100m on Wednesday, cruised to 22.63 to win semi-final three and advance to Saturday’s final.

Her Jamaican teammate Natalliah Whyte will also be in the final after running 23.09 to finish second in semi-final one.

On the Men’s side, Trinidad & Tobago’s Jereem Richards will get an opportunity to defend his title from 2018 after running 20.40 to win semi-final three and advance.

In the 400m, Barbadian World Championships bronze medallist Sada Williams will be in the final after running 51.59 to win semi-final two. Jamaica’s Junelle Bromfield also advanced from that race as a fastest loser courtesy of a 52.18 effort to finish fourth.

Jonathan Jones ran 45.82 to win semi-final two and advance on the Men's side. Joining him in the final will be Jamaica's Anthony Cox who ran 45.98 for third in semi-final one and nathon Allen who was second in semi-final three with 45.99. 

Jamaica's reigning double Olympic champion Elaine Thompson-Herah added the Commonwealth 100m title to her list of accomplishments after winning the event in comfortable fashion in Birmingham on Wednesday.

The Jamaican headed into the final as a heavy favorite and easily lived up to that billing after dominating the event to cross the line in 10.95.  St Lucia’s Julian Alfred continued an excellent season after finishing second to the Jamaican in 11.01.  Great Britain’s Daryl Neita was third in 11.07.  The Bahamas' Tynia Gaither and Jamaica’s Natalliah Whyte were 7th and 8th respectively.

The medal was the third for the athlete at the event, but her first individual medal, adding to 4x100m relay gold and silver medals in 2014 and 2018 respectively.

In the men’s equivalent, Kenya’s Ferdinand Omanyala claimed top billing after winning the event in 10.01, ahead of South Africa’s Akani Simbine, the defending champion, who was second in 10.13.  Sri Lanka’s Yupun Abeykoon was third in 10.14.  No Caribbean male athlete made the 100m final.  Jamaica’s Kemar Bailey-Cole, who won the event in 2014 finished fourth in the semi-finals.

 

Double Olympic champion Elaine Thompson-Herah led all qualifiers to the semi-finals of the 100m as Athletics action got underway at the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham on Tuesday.

The World Championship 100m bronze medallist from Eugene ran an easy 10.99 to win heat two and advance.

Antigua & Barbuda’s Joella Lloyd was next up, finishing third in heat three in 11.42 to advance. In heat four, Guyana’s Jasmine Abrams almost perfectly matched Lloyd, running 11.42 for third to advance.

Trinidad & Tobago’s Michelle Lee-Ahye and the Bahamas’ Tynia Gaither ran 11.14 and 11.19, respectively, to finish first and second in heat five and progress.

Jamaica’s Natalliah Whyte ran 11.31 to win heat six and advance while St. Lucia’s Julien Alfred (11.24) and Jamaica’s Remona Burchell (11.46) were the top two finishers in the seventh and final heat.

On the Men’s side, Nadale Buntin of St. Kitts & Nevis will be in the semis after finishing third in the first heat with a season’s best 10.37.

Rikkoi Brathwaite of the British Virgin Islands finished second in heat three in 10.42 to advance.

Next up was Jamaican 2014 Commonwealth Games 100m champion Kemar Bailey-Cole who ran 10.15 to finish second in heat four to progress.

Heat six saw Trinidad & Tobago’s Kion Benjamin produce 10.34 for second to move on while Jamaica’s Conroy Jones (10.28) and Trinidad & Tobago’s Eric Harrison Jr (10.37) both advanced from the eighth heat.

The tenth and final heat saw three Caribbean men advance. Trinidad & Tobago's Jerod Elcock won the heat in 10.26 while Guyana's Emmanuel Archibald (10.28) and St. Lucia's Stephan Charles (10.29) finished second and third, respectively.

Jamaican World Championship finalist Natoya Goule is now a Commonwealth Games finalist as well after running 1:58.39 to advance to the final as the fastest qualifier.

In the field, Jamaica’s Danniel Thomas-Dodd and Lloydricia Cameron both advanced to the final of the Women’s shot put after throws of 18.42m and 16.61m, respectively. Thomas-Dodd’s distance was the farthest in qualifying.

The Caribbean will be well represented in the final of the Men’s long jump as The Bahamas’ Laquan Nairn (7.90m), Jamaica’s Shawn-D Thompson (7.85m), Guyana’s Emmanuel Archibald (7.83m), Dominica’s Tristan James (7.65m) and Trinidad & Tobago’s Anduelle Wright (7.58m) will all be present.

Jamaica’s Traves Smikle (64.90m) and Roje Stona (58.35m) will both be in the final of the Men’s discus throw alongside Grenada’s Josh Boateng (56.51m).

The recently concluded 2022 World Athletics Championships in Eugene saw the Caribbean region grab the opportunity to represent themselves well on a global stage with both hands.

The region took home 17 medals in total including five golds, nine silvers and three bronzes with Jamaica leading the Caribbean medal count with 10 ahead of Grenada and the Dominican Republic who got two each while the Bahamas, Barbados and Puerto Rico all took home one apiece.

There were a number of standout performances throughout the 10 days starting with Jamaicans Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce and Shericka Jackson.

Fraser-Pryce produced a championship record 10.67 to defend her 100m title and win her fifth in total. Fraser-Pryce also won her second 200m medal in her World Championships career, a silver in a season’s best 22.81.

Jackson ran a personal best 10.73 for silver in the 100m behind Fraser-Pryce and followed that up with one of the performances of the championships in the 200m. She produced a time of 21.45 to win her first global title and become the fastest woman alive over the distance.

Double Olympic champion Elaine Thompson-Herah came third in the 100m in 10.81 to complete Jamaica's second consecutive 100m clean sweep at a major championship.

Fraser-Pryce, Jackson and Thompson-Herah then teamed up with Kemba Nelson to win silver in the 4x100m in 41.18 behind the USA (41.14).

We now move to the 400m where the Caribbean women swept the medals. Bahamian Shaunae Miller-Uibo became the first female to complete the world event cycle (gold medals at the World Youth Championships, World Junior Championships, World Indoor Championships, World Championships and Olympics) by finally winning her maiden world title with a world-leading 49.11.

The Dominican Republic’s Marileidy Paulino, the world leader coming into the Championships, followed up her silver medal in Tokyo last year with 49.60 to claim silver once more.

Barbados’ Sada Williams produced a brilliant personal best and national record 49.75 to take home bronze, becoming the first Barbadian woman to win a World Championship medal.

In the men’s equivalent, Grenadian superstar Kirani James ran 44.48 for silver behind American Michael Norman (44.30). This was James’ third World Championships medal and first since 2015 when he won bronze.

Paulino was also part of the brilliant quartet that took the Dominican Republic to gold in the Mixed Relay. Paulino combined with Fiordaliza Cofil, Lidio Andres Feliz and Alexander Ogando to run 3:09.82 for gold.

Staying on the track, Jamaica’s Britany Anderson followed up on the promise she’s shown all season to secure a silver medal in the 100m hurdles.

Anderson ran a new national record 12.31 in the semi-finals before running a wind-aided 12.23 to secure the silver medal behind Nigeria’s Tobi Amusan who clocked an astounding 12.06 for victory after running a legal world record 12.12 earlier in the semis.

Puerto Rican Olympic champion Jasmine Camacho-Quinn ran the same time as Anderson to take home bronze.

Jamaica picked up silver medals in both the men's and women's 4x400m relays. The men comprising of Ackeem Bloomfield, Nathon Allen, Jevaughn Powell and Christopher Taylor registered 2:58.58 to finish behind the USA (2:56.17) while the women with Candice McLeod, Janieve Russell, Stephenie Ann McPherson and Charokee Young produced 3:20.74 to finish behind the Americans (3:17.79).

In the field, Grenada’s Anderson Peters became only the second man to defend his javelin world title.

The 2022 world leader produced a best throw of 90.54m to successfully defend his title from Doha three years ago, replicating a feat only matched by Czech world record holder Jan Zelezny who won consecutive world titles in 1993 and 1995 before returning to top spot in 2001.

Peters produced an amazing series, registering 90.21m, 90.46m, 87.21m, 88.11m, 85.83m and 90.54m in his six rounds.

Jamaica’s Shanieka Ricketts produced a season’s best 14.89m to take silver in the women’s triple jump behind Venezuelan world record holder and Olympic champion Yulimar Rojas (15.47m).

Ricketts produced jumps of 14.89m, 14.86m, 14.37m, 14.40m, 14.62m and 14.80m for one of her best series of her career.

The region will be hoping for an even better showing at the 2023 World Championships scheduled for August 19-27 in Budapest, Hungary.

 

 

 

 

Shericka Jackson produced the second fastest 200m time in history to win gold in the women’s 200m final at the World Athletics Championships in Eugene on Thursday night.

Jackson, who won silver in the 100m with a 10.73 personal best on Sunday, ran a spectacular championship record 21.45 for victory ahead of teammate Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce (21.81) and Great Britain’s Dina Asher-Smith (22.02). Olympic champion Elaine Thompson-Herah finished seventh in 22.39.

Jackson’s time also makes her the fastest woman alive over the distance and is a new national record.

In the men’s equivalent, the USA completed their second sprint sweep of the championships with Noah Lyles defending his title from Doha with a phenomenal world-leading and lifetime best of 19.31 to become the third fastest man in history over the distance.

Kenny Bednarek ran 19.77 for the silver medal while 18-year-old Erriyon Knighton took the bronze in 19.80. The Dominican Republic's Alexander Ogando and Trinidad & Tobago's Jereem Richards were fifth and sixth in 19.93 and 20.08, respectively.

In the Women’s 800m, Jamaica’s 1500m semi-finalist Adelle Tracey ran a personal best of 1:59.20 to finish third in heat one and advance to the semi-finals.

Joining Tracey in the semis will be her Jamaican teammate and 2019 World Championships finalist Natoya Goule, who won the sixth and final heat in 2:00.06.

In the field, the world leader and defending world champion Anderson Peters of Grenada needed only one throw to advance to the final of the men’s javelin, registering a mark of 89.91m. Trinidadian 2012 Olympic gold medallist Keshorn Walcott failed to advance, finishing 16th overall in qualifying with a throw of 78.87m.

Cuba’s Lazaro Martinez jumped 17.06m to advance to the final of the men’s triple jump.

Shericka Jackson, Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce and Elaine Thompson-Herah all advanced to the final of the women’s 200m at the World Athletics Championships in Eugene on Tuesday.

Jackson, who won silver in the 100m in a personal best 10.73 on Sunday, looked magnificent in semi-final 1, cruising to 21.67 to win and advance to the final.

100m bronze medallist and double Olympic champion Elaine Thompson-Herah finished third in semi-final 2 in a season’s best 21.97 to advance to the final as a fastest loser. The USA’s Tamara Clark ran 21.95 to win while defending world champion Dina Asher-Smith ran a season’s best 21.96 for second.

Newly-crowned 100m champion Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce was also impressive in semi-final 3, running a season’s best 21.82 to win ahead of US champion Abby Steiner (22.15).

Dominican Republic Mixed Relay gold-medallist Alexander Ogando continued his brilliant world championships so far with a personal best and national record 19.91 to win semi-final 1 of the men’s 200m.

Trinidadian 2017 World Championship bronze medallist Jereem Richards of Trinidad & Tobago finished third in semi-final 2 in a brilliant 19.86 to advance to the final as a fastest loser. American defending champion Noah Lyles ran a brilliant 19.62 to win the race while Olympic silver medallist Kenny Bednarek, also of the USA, ran a season’s best 19.84 for second.

In the women’s 400m hurdles, Jamaican champion Janieve Russell ran 54.42 to win heat 2 and advance to the semi-finals.

Panama’s Gianna Woodruff ran 55.21 to finish third in semi-final 3 and progress. Jamaica’s Shiann Salmon produced 54.01 in heat 4 to finish second and advance while her teammate, 2019 World Championship bronze medallist Rushell Clayton finished fourth in heat 5 in 54.99 to advance.

Jaheel Hyde ran a new personal best 48.03 for sixth in the men’s 400m hurdles final. Brazilian world leader Alison Dos Santos dominated to win gold in a championship record 46.29 while Americans Rai Benjamin (46.89) and Trevor Bassitt (47.39) were second and third.

 

Jamaica’s Shanieka Ricketts won a silver medal in the Women’s triple jump at the World Athletics Championships in Eugene on Monday.

Ricketts produced a season’s best 14.89m to finish second behind Venezuelan world record holder Yulimar Rojas who produced a world leading 15.47 to win her third world title. Tori Franklin of the USA jumped 14.72m for bronze.

Ricketts, who had a slow start to the season because a knee injury that hampered her preparation, managed to get it together in time to produce her best performance when it mattered most.

She produced jumps of 14.89m, 14.86m, 14.37m, 14.40m, 14.62m and 14.80m for one of her best series of her career.

On the track, Trinidad & Tobago’s Jereem Richards advanced to the semi-finals of the 200m after running 20.35 to win heat 2. Richards won bronze at the 2017 London World Championships and won 400m gold at the World Indoor Championships earlier this season.

Mixed Relay gold medallist for the Dominican Republic Alexander Ogando was one of the most impressive qualifiers to the semis, easing down to a national record-equalling 20.01 to win heat 4.

100m semi-finalist and 2011 world champion Yohan Blake ran 20.35 to finish fourth in heat 5 and advance as one of the non-automatic qualifiers.

Finally, Rasheed Dwyer ran a season’s best 20.29 to finish second in the seventh and final heat to progress to the next round.

For the women, the usual suspects all booked their spots in the semi-finals.

Shericka Jackson, who became the third fastest woman in history with a personal best 21.55 to win at the Jamaican Championships in June, was impressive to easily win heat 1 in 22.33.

Heat 2 saw 100m bronze medallist and double Olympic champion Elaine Thompson-Herah cruise to 22.41 to finish second behind Namibia’s Beatrice Maslingi (22.27). Antigua’s Joella Lloyd ran 22.99 to finish fourth and advance as a fastest loser.

100m champion Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce was also in cruise control in heat 3 running 22.26 for second behind Niger’s Aminatou Seyni who ran a national record 21.98.

Bahamian Tynia Gaither rebounded from the disappointment of being disqualified from her 100m semi-final on Sunday to finish third in heat 4 in 22.61 to advance.

Weeks of speculation ended today when Puma announced the signing of five-time Olympic gold medalist Elaine Thompson-Herah.

Former Olympic champion Michael Johnson, who won two gold medals at the 1996 Atlanta Games, believes that Jamaican sprinting icons Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce and Elaine Thompson-Herah are underappreciated.

In an interview with Athletics Weekly, the former 200m and 400m world record holder offered an interesting new lens to look at the sport, saying we should focus on head-to-head duels rather than fixating on times.

Johnson said that nowadays, track and field is too focused on the times and not focused enough on the rivalry and the storytelling behind the scenes as well, and the women’s 100m rivalry between Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce and Elaine Thompson-Herah is a perfect opportunity to showcase that.

“Yeah, I mean I would say that it’s a perfect example of the problem because I don’t think that Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce or Elaine Thompson-Herah get enough credit for what they’ve done in the sport because we’re so focused on times,” said Johnson.

“So, you know right now I can see that you know what’s going to happen most likely with Elaine is, there’s going to continue for the remained of her career unless she breaks the World record in the 100m, a focus now on whether she breaks the world record or not and if she doesn’t, you know there’s a danger that people will be disappointed,” he said.

The 29-year-old Thompson-Herah is a five-time Olympic champion and the 100m and 200m title holder from both Rio 2016 and Tokyo 2020.

At 35, Fraser-Pryce has three Olympic gold medals – eight medals in total – including the gold-standard 100m crown won at both Beijing 2008 and London 2012. She is also a nine-time world champion and the reigning world gold medallist at 100m.

“I mean, then the fact that you have at the same time these two women from this very small island, who go head-to-head you know at these championships and they, between the two of them, they’ve won the gold medals in the 100m over the last four Olympic Games,” said Johnson.

The current 100m world record has stood since 1988, Florence Griffith-Joyner, also known as Flo-Jo, became the only woman ever to break the 10.5-second barrier with a run of 10.49 at the US Olympic trials in 1988. Since then, many have deemed the mark impossible to beat – not least because of controversy regarding possible wind assistance at those trials.

Johnson feels instead of focusing on the world record, we should be focused more on these athletes and their ability to deliver when it counts at championships.

“You know that’s incredible and I think that should be celebrated. And if I think if we were focused more on these athletes and their ability to deliver when it counts at championships and win the head-to-head battle as opposed to well this time and what was the wind and you know is it a national record and how close is it to the world record and all of those things, I think we are robbing ourselves and the sport of its greatness,” he said.

 

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