Rising sprint sensation Natrece East of Wolmer’s Girls is among this year’s Pocket Rocket Foundation Scholarship recipients, who will receive a significant financial boost towards their academic and sporting pursuits.

Through donations and fundraisings, the foundation, which is the brainchild of Jamaica’s sprint icon Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce, offers financial assistance to high school student athletes, between second form and sixth form, who represent their school in any sporting discipline.

This year, East, who won the Class three 200m title at ISSA Boys’ and Girls’ Athletics Championships earlier this year, and is also a national representative, is among 11 recipients from various high schools.

Tshani Armstrong of St Catherine; Tyrone Lawson of Jamaica College, Lysander Taylor of Papine; Karissa Kelly of Wolmer’s Girls; Nickayla Russell of Holmwood Technical; Kenrick McFarlane of Excelsior; Jaheim Jackson of Knox College; Joel Lamm of Wolmer’s Boys; Jordyne Grant, also of Wolmer’s Boys, and Streme Cha of Campion College, are the other recipients.

Each recipient will receive $100,000 towards their high school expenses to include, tuition, books, uniform, lunch and travel, which is to be redeemed annually, provided their exemplary academic standards and disciplined behaviour remain intact.

This brings the number to over 66 student athletes across more than 22 different high schools competing in 11 different sporting disciplines that have benefited from Academic Scholarship, since the foundation's inception in 2013.

Scholarships are awarded based on exemplary performance in both academics and athletics.

Two-time 200m world champion Dafne Schippers, who famously chased down and beat Jamaica’s Elaine Thompson-Herah at the line in the finals at the 2015 World Athletics Championships in Beijing, China, has retired.

The 31-year-old Dutchwoman, who won a silver medal in the 100m final behind Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce that year, has been plagued by injury over the past few years, impairing her ability to compete at the highest level.

On Tuesday, she announced on Instagram that her race has been run.

“The race stops here,” she announced.

“As an athlete, you always know this day will come, that at one point, your career will be a moment in time—a collection of memories and hopefully medals. Today, I have decided to take my life off track to pursue and embrace whatever comes next, but not without saying a massive thank you for all the endless support. It has been a journey without regret.”

She expressed gratitude to all who have supported in a career that did not quite materialize in the way she would have liked.

“My family, my team, my fans, and my sponsors, you made it all worthwhile.”

At her peak, Schippers was among the greatest ever short sprinters.

She set a championship record of 21.63 in Beijing after chasing down Thompson-Herah and nipping the Jamaican, who ran a then personal best of 21.66, at the line. Veronica Campbell-Brown was third in 21.97.

At the time, Schippers’ time was the third-fastest ever run over the half-lap sprint. Only Florence Griffith-Joyner (21.34) and Marion Jones (21.62) had run faster. The Dutchwoman had earlier run a lifetime best 10.81 to win the silver medal behind Fraser-Pryce in the 100m final.

At the 2016 Rio Olympics, Schippers won the silver medal behind Thompson-Herah in the 200m, running a time of 21.88. She was a disappointing fifth in the 100m final due to injury. She won the 200m world title at the 2017 World Championships and was third in the 100m.

An adductor injury forced her to withdraw from the 2019 World Championships in Doha and persistent back injuries limited her ability to compete internationally for more than a year. She last raced in the 100m in Belgium in July 2022 finishing second in her heat in 11.37.

 

 

As the curtains fell on the 2023 World Athletics Championships in Budapest, Hungary, the global track and field community bore witness to an unforgettable spectacle of talent, resilience, and passion. For nine consecutive days, athletes from around the world competed under sweltering heat in their pursuit of excellence.

Among these remarkable competitors, it was the athletes from the Caribbean who stood out, earning well-deserved praise from Keith Joseph, President of the Caribbean Association of National Olympic Committees (CANOC).

In a message released on Friday morning, Joseph expressed his admiration for the outstanding performances of Caribbean athletes, acknowledging their dedication to representing their countries and the region on the world stage.

"The excitement of the athletics competition, once started, never abated," Joseph remarked. "The final event, the women's 4 x 400m relay, saw Jamaica's potential hold on the gold medal slip away, literally in the final strides, much to our collective CANOC chagrin. But this did not detract from the fact that on yet another occasion in the wide and wonderfully exciting world of track and field competition, Jamaica continued to carry the Caribbean cause on its back."

Joseph went on to highlight several standout performances that left an indelible mark on the championships. Shericka Jackson's remarkable victory in the 200m solidified her status as a global star in the sport. Antonio Watson's stunning triumph in the 400m, despite his status as an U23 athlete, showcased the immense potential of the region's younger talents. Danielle Williams added another gold medal to Jamaica's tally with her impressive win in the 100m hurdles.

Joseph also highlighted Hansle Parchment and Wayne Pinnock secured silver medals in the 110m hurdles and long jump, respectively. The women's 4 x 100m and 4 x 400m relay teams also earned silver for Jamaica, while Shelly-Ann Fraser Pryce and Rushell Clayton contributed bronze medals to the nation's haul in the 100m and 400m hurdles events.

The president’s praise also extended beyond Jamaica in acknowledging, the Dominican Republic's Marileidy Paulino domination of the women's 400m, while the British Virgin Islands' Kyron McMaster made a triumphant return to form with a silver medal in the 400m hurdles. Barbados' Sada Williams displayed her prowess with a silver in the women's 400m, and Leyanis Hernandez of Cuba secured a bronze in the triple jump.

Cuba continued to make its presence felt in the championships, with Lazaro Martinez and Cristian Urria taking second and third place, respectively, in the men's triple jump. Grenada's Lindon Victor made his mark by earning a bronze in the men's javelin.

Amidst the celebrations, St. Lucia's Julien Alfred emerged as a rising star, placing fifth in the 100m and fourth in the 200m. Dominica's Thea LaFond held her own, finishing fifth in the women's triple jump.

Joseph acknowledged that there were disappointments along the way for some Caribbean athletes, but their spirits remained unbroken. He celebrated the resilience that defines the Caribbean people, inspiring their athletes to give their best, fully aware that they are motivated to go 'beyond possible,' defying every attempt to deter their commitment to success.

 

"The World Athletics Championships are done," Joseph declared. "The performances of our athletes are now indelibly recorded in global athletics history. As CANOC, we stand proud of our athletes, medallists as well as those who missed out. Together, we affirm our commitment to our Caribbean-ness."

With these inspiring performances, Caribbean athletes have once again proven their mettle on the global stage, leaving an enduring legacy of dedication, perseverance, and pride in their Caribbean heritage. Their remarkable achievements continue to inspire and unite the region, setting the stage for even greater success in the future.

 

 

 

 

In the world of athletics, few stories capture the essence of perseverance and determination quite like Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce's. The five-time world 100m champion on Wednesday shared an emotional outpouring of gratitude to her legion of fans, acknowledging their unbending support throughout a challenging season marked by a daunting knee injury sustained just prior to opening her season in Kenya in May.

As she navigated the twists and turns of her journey to the World Athletics Championships in Budapest, Hungary, Fraser-Pryce's resilience shone through, leaving an indelible mark on both her admirers and her sport.

The seasoned athlete, at the age of 36, defied expectations and showcased her extraordinary grit. Despite the hurdles that the injury presented, Fraser-Pryce sprinted her way to a bronze-medal finish in the 100m event, clocking a season's best of 10.77 seconds. This feat was achieved even as she watched her own record of 10.67 seconds being eclipsed by the remarkable ShaCarri Richardson of the United States, who blazed through the finish line in an astonishing 10.65 seconds.

Fraser-Pryce's journey, however, wasn't solely defined by her individual achievement. As a key member of Jamaica's 4x100m relay team, she once again demonstrated her steely commitment to her team and her nation.

During the relay, Fraser-Pryce faced another setback—a hamstring injury—early on in her leg. Yet, driven by an unshakeable determination and a deep sense of duty, she continued the race, ensuring that the baton made its way to the next runner, Sashalee Forbes. This display of sheer willpower and selflessness rallied her teammates and captured the hearts of fans worldwide.

The scene that unfolded in the aftermath of Fraser-Pryce's heroics was a testament to the profound impact she has had on her sport and her community. Teammates and coaches rushed to the medical centre, offering their support and encouragement. The doctors' diagnosis of a hamstring tear could have been a devastating blow, but Fraser-Pryce's spirit remained unbroken. The prognosis of a full recovery only solidified her resolve to come back stronger, setting her sights on new horizons.

Fraser-Pryce's heartfelt words resonated deeply as she addressed her fans for the first time since the injury. "As I contemplate lacing up my spikes again, I am moved by the warmth received by each and every one of you," she shared. "Looking back 14 years from my first appearance at the World Athletics Championships and 16 medals later, it feels truly prolific.

“A special ‘thank you’ to the organizers whose swift response to my injury and recovery spoke volumes for their care and professionalism on and off the track. Jamaica, the sweet land that I love, you are my heart, my backbone and the literal catalyst pushing me against all odds. Without a doubt, I am proud to be ‘one of us’ – as you all poured your support and care into me over the season. It was what kept me going.”

Her acknowledgment of the organizers' support and professionalism, coupled with her profound love for her homeland, Jamaica, painted a portrait of an athlete who draws strength from her roots.

"We never quit, we never stop," she proclaimed. These words encapsulated her ethos—one of resilience, tenacity, and an unrelenting pursuit of excellence. Fraser-Pryce's ability to find inspiration in adversity, to view setbacks as stepping stones, and to rise above challenges with grace and grit is a narrative that will continue to inspire athletes and fans across the globe.

With her sights set on future endeavors, Fraser-Pryce left a tantalizing promise: "Every chapter, no matter how it reads, always leads us to better preparation and execution when again we rise. So get ready, Paris here we come…"

Her journey is far from over; it's a testament to the power of the human spirit, the unwavering support of a community, and the enduring legacy of an athlete who embodies the very essence of sportsmanship and perseverance.

As the world watches in awe, Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce's determination burns brighter than ever. She has her sights set on her fifth Olympic Games in Paris 2024, a stage where she intends to once again showcase her indomitable spirit and passion for her sport.

Jamaica’s Minister of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport, the Honourable Olivia Grange, has praised Shelly Ann Fraser-Pryce for her tenacity and inner strength that, after suffering an injury, allowed her to finish her leg of the 4×100m relay Saturday to help Jamaica to get the silver medal at the World Championships in Budapest.

Running on the back-stretch, Fraser-Pryce reported suffered a hamstring strain early into the leg but risking even greater injury, still managed to get the baton to Sashalee Forbes so that Jamaica was able to complete the relay.

Put in a disadvantageous position, Shericka Jackson on anchor was unable to overhaul 100m champion Sha’Carri Richardson on the anchor leg.

The Jamaican minister, who is in Budapest, was impressed by Fraser-Pryce’s courage in the face of great personal injury.

 "Shelly, regarded by many as the greatest woman sprinter of all time, demonstrated another aspect of her greatness today (Saturday) when she suffered a muscle strain during the race but pushed on in spite of to safely hand off the baton, ensuring our medal,” the minister said.

"All of Jamaica hails you Shelly and we are grateful for your feat of seeing it through for the country despite the pain you must have been feeling. We are praying for your full and speedy recovery."

Following the race, Fraser-Pryce’s teammates rushed to the medical facility to support the veteran sprinter, who despite nursing a knee injury won bronze in the 100m final on last Monday to win her 15th medal at the World Championships.

The relay silver medal is her 16th and makes her Jamaica’s most decorated athlete – male or female – at the championships that began in 1983.

 

It was always expected to be an almighty clash between reigning women’s 4x100m relay champions United States and Olympic champions Jamaica. In the end, it was the Americans who prevailed in the final at the World Athletics Championships in Budapest, Hungary on Saturday.

The American quartet of Tamari Davis, Twanisha Terry, Gabrielle Thomas and Sha’Carri Richardson, topped the event in a Championship record 41.03s Championship Record, ahead of their Jamaican counterparts – Natasha Morrison, Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce, Shashalee Forbes and Shericka Jackson –who ended in season’s best 41.21s.

Great Britain’s quartet of Asha Phillip, Imani Lansiquot, Bianca Williams and Daryll Neita, was third in a season’s best 41.97s.

During the event, Fraser-Pryce who has been braving a chronic knee injury, suffered what is reported to be a muscle strain, but like a warrior, pushed through the difficulty to safely hand off the baton, ensuring the country ended with a medal.

Jamaica secured their spot in the women’s 4x100m relays finals, after registering a comfortable victory in the heats, while Trinidad and Tobago missed out, at the World Athletics Championships in Budapest, Hungary on Friday.

Running from lane two, the Jamaican quartet of Briana Williams, Elaine Thompson-Herah, Shashalee Forbes and Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce 41.70s ahead of Great Britain 42.33 and Switzerland (42.64s).

Trinidad and Tobago’s quartet of Akilah Lewis, Michelle-Lee Ahye, Reyare Thomas, who ran a blistering 9.66s on the third leg, and Leah Bertrand, placed fifth from lane eight in 42.85s.

Unfortunately, that was not good enough to progress as one of the non-automatic qualifiers on time. Those spots were taken by Netherlands (42.53s) and Poland (42.65s), who were fourth and fifth respectively in heat two.

That heat was expectedly won by United States, who progressed as the fastest qualifiers in 41.59s, ahead of Cote D’Ivoire, who achieved a new Area Record 41.90s and Italy, who finished in a National Record 42.14s.

The final will be contested tomorrow at 2:50pm Jamaica time.

Catch live action of the 2023 World Athletics Championships by downloading the Sportsmax app.

Sha’Carri Richardson produced a breathtaking performance to claim her maiden World 100m title on day three of the IAAF World Athletics Championships in Budapest on Monday.

Richardson, running from lane nine after a shaky performance in the semi-finals earlier on Saturday, produced a personal best and championship record 10.65 to take the gold.

Shericka Jackson followed up her 10.79 in the semis with 10.72 to take her second consecutive silver medal in the evet while defending champion, Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce, was third with a season’s best 10.77.

 

Dina Asher-Smith believes she is racing in the “golden age” of women’s sprinting.

The 27-year-old is ready to start her World Championships campaign in Budapest.

Asher-Smith, who finished fourth in the 100m at the Worlds last year despite equalling her British record of 10.83 seconds, and Daryll Neita race in the 100m heats on Sunday.

They are aiming to challenge Jamaica’s Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce, Shericka Jackson and Elaine Thompson, who completed a clean sweep of the medals in Eugene 13 months ago. Asher-Smith took 200m bronze behind Jackson and Fraser-Pryce.

“I definitely do think we’re in like a golden age,” said Asher-Smith. “It will be remembered as kind of like a (Usain) Bolt era but on the side of the women’s, and far more competitive. There are a lot of women in that arena.

“You say Shelley-Ann and Elaine would be like, ‘ah?’ Then even this year, Shericka will be like, ‘er?’ There are just so many.

“I feel like when there’s so many people running fast, there’s no point thinking about other people. You’ve just got to focus on yourself.

“If you start focusing on one or two, you’ll forget about the other seven, who are also incredibly quick. There’s lots of very, very talented and very experienced women racing.

“I think we have one of the strongest and what will hopefully be the most exciting events of this World Championships.

“There’s a lot of depth. All you can do is focus on yourself, right? That’s all I can do. I can only control myself. So that’s kind of what I am doing.”

Neita, who along with Asher-Smith is also running in the 200m and 4x100m relay, goes into the Championships ranked seventh in the world in both individual events.

She said: “I’m feeling very confident. It’s going to be the first time I’m doing two events and then onto the relay as well. So it’s very different this year, because I’m normally going for the 100 metres, which is we know is stacked.

“Failing to make the final at worlds last year was very bittersweet, running the fastest ever semi-final not to make it.

“The 200m is still a pretty new event for me but I’m feeling very confident and I’m just going there this year, very relaxed, not putting too much pressure on myself, but just really want to have fun and execute and just achieve as well as I can.”

Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce, Megan Tapper and Rajindra Campbell all secured victories at Saturday’s Meeting de Madrid, part of the World Athletics Continental Tour Silver Series.

Fraser-Pryce, aiming for her sixth World 100m title in Budapest next month, followed up a 10.82 clocking in her season opener in Lucerne on Thursday with a meet record 10.83 effort to win.

Spain’s Jael Bestue was second in 11.10 while Shashalee Forbes, who will also be on Jamaica’s 100m team in Budapest, was third in 11.11.

Olympic bronze medallist and reigning national champion, Megan Tapper, ran 12.69 to win the A Final of the women’s 100m hurdles ahead of the USA’s Tonea Marshall (12.74) and Liberia’s Ebony Marshall (12.81).

The A Final of the men’s 110m hurdles saw Tyler Mason and Orlando Bennett finish fourth and fifth with times of 13.41 and 13.43, respectively. The race was won by Switzerland’s Jason Joseph in a personal best 13.10 ahead of France’s Wilhelm Belocian (13.20) and Spain’s Enrique Llopis (13.35).

Fresh off a 9.99 effort to win in Lucerne on Thursday, Julian Forte produced a season’s best 20.35 for second in the 200m. The race was won by South Africa’s Luxolo Adams in 20.22 while France’s Ryan Zeze was third in 20.52.

In the field, Rajindra Campbell set a new personal best, meet record and national record to win the shot put.

The 27-year-old, who entered the competition with a personal best of 21.31m done in May this year, became the first Jamaican to break the 22m barrier with a throw of 22.22m to win and break the previous national record of 21.96m set by O’Dayne Richards in 2017.

American Roger Steen was second with 21.33m while Nigeria’s Chukwuebuka Enekwechi threw 21.30m for third.

Campbell’s throw is also put him joint-third in the world this year alongside New Zealand’s Tom Walsh. Only Americans Joe Kovacs with 22.69m and Ryan Crouser with his World Record 23.56m have thrown further this year.

After he achieved his previous personal best at the USATF Throws Festival, Campbell told The Jamaica Observer that he was confident he’d achieve the automatic World Championship qualifying standard, 21.40m, at some point during the season.

He then produced throws of 20.23m at the Music City Track Festival and 21.14m at the Arkansas Grand Prix in June.

In July, the former Ferncourt and Kingston College man became a national champion for the first time with 21.04 before, just two days ago, he threw 20.21m in Lucern.

 

 

At the heart of Jamaica's remarkable legacy in track and field, among the names that stand out as a symbol of excellence and inspiration is one Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce.

With a record five 100m world titles and two Olympic blue-ribbon titles to her name, Fraser-Pryce is part of a golden era of Jamaican sprinters that includes illustrious figures like Usain Bolt, Melaine Walker, Veronica Campbell Brown and many more.

Her journey from a young girl in Waterhouse to a global athletics icon is a testament to the power of determination and talent.

"It definitely feels good, I think for me, especially coming from, you know, Waterhouse, a young girl who didn't, you know, know where she would end up in the future," Fraser-Pryce shared in an interview with Black Enterprise.

"But to be able to be one of the icons of our country is really phenomenal. And being able to give inspiration to other young girls who are coming from similar situations as I was, or even now, being able to relate to where I'm at on my journey, whether it's on motherhood, age, or a lot of things. So being able to drive that, you know, here in my hometown, being able to say that I'm homegrown, being able to say that."

Fraser-Pryce's success has not only made her a sporting legend but also a hometown hero. She acknowledges the support of the people of Jamaica, saying, "A lot of who I am is because of the people of Jamaica and how much they have poured into me, and their support has always been so constant."

Representing her country and community fills her with immense pride, knowing that she carries their hopes and dreams with her on the world stage.

Being part of Jamaica's golden era of track and field athletes has driven Fraser-Pryce to continuously raise the bar.

"I think that helps us to elevate who we are as a country and as women when we step on the line to know that we have such a rich history when it comes to track and field," she stated. It motivates her to give her all, showcasing the strength and prowess of Jamaican athletes to the world.

Despite being a small island nation, Fraser-Pryce firmly believes that Jamaica's athletes have made a significant impact. "You always want to make sure that we, you know, we show up, and I show up, and being able to put our country first because we understand what limited resources mean," she said. Fraser-Pryce wants to inspire young athletes in Jamaica that greatness can be achieved even on their home turf with the right mindset and determination.

"We're little, but we tallawah," Fraser-Pryce emphasized. "It's not about the size but the punch. So we're able to really make a statement globally, and we're really appreciative of all that we've been able to accomplish."

Five-time world 100m champion, Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce, has expressed her unwavering confidence and determination as she prepares to open her 2023 season at Jamaica's national championships in Kingston from July 6-9 and begin her campaign for a record-extending sixth world 100m title in Budapest in August.

After recovering from a knee injury she suffered back in May in Kenya, Fraser-Pryce is more determined than ever to get back on track after her record-breaking season in 2022.

Reflecting on her journey, Fraser-Pryce, in an interview with Black Enterprise shared, "You know, I've always said that no two years are ever the same. You plan and you work, and you just hope that everything falls into place."

Her last year was filled with joy and achievement, especially after winning an unprecedented fifth World 100m title and running under 10.7 seconds, a record seven times, which laid a solid foundation for her ambitions this year.

However, the sprinter experienced a hiccup early in the season in Kenya, forcing a delayed start to her season. Determined to bounce back stronger, she returned to the drawing board to ensure her knee was in excellent condition. She knew that the outdoor season would demand not only mental fortitude but also peak physical performance. Her goal was to be in top form and leave no room for setbacks.

 Speaking about her preparations, Fraser-Pryce stated, "So far, training has been going great, and I believe I'm in a much better place now. I've been able to tweak some things and really revisit areas that needed work."

A three-time Olympic gold medallist, Fraser-Pryce’s relentless work ethic and dedication have been the driving force behind her successful career, and she remains focused on fine-tuning every aspect of her performance.

Throughout her journey, Fraser-Pryce has relied on her spirituality, trusting that God will always guide her path. "I really just trust that God will always work things out," she said, "I always have to trust that. You do the work, and you just get on the track, and you know you have a good team. Coaches are prepared, we're prepared."

Jamaica’s Sprint Legend Usain Bolt says he remains eager to play another impactful role in track and field’s growth and, as such, is awaiting a position from World Athletics to hit the ground running.

The 36-year-old, who shot to fame by winning eight Olympic titles and 11 World Championships gold medals, while breaking records in the 100m, 200m and 4x100m, believes the track and field has experienced somewhat of a decline since his retirement in 2017, but stands ready to assist in the sport’s revival, if asked to do so.

“I’m still waiting on a position from (World Athletics), I’ve reached out to them and let them know I would love to make a bigger impact in sports, as long as they want me to,” Bolt said in an interview with Reuters.

“We’ve been in talks, but we’ll have to wait and see what comes around,” the global phenom and one of Jamaica’s most recognizable figures, added.

Bolt is aware that his personality was a vital ingredient in the sport’s success during his era but pointed out to indications that athletes like US sprinter Noah Lyles, might be starting to fill the charisma gap.

“It’s going to be a process. After me, it kind of went down because of who I was as a person and how big my personality was,” the iconic sprinter shared. 

“But I think over time, it will be better. I think young athletes are coming up and I see a few personalities that are needed in sport; hopefully, in the upcoming years, it will change. Hopefully, I can play a part and help the sport to grow,” Bolt stated.

While there was some disappointment about the crowd turnout at last year’s World Championships in Eugene, Oregon, Bolt is of the view that next year’s Olympic Games in Paris, France, could be a special moment for the sport.

“Sometimes, it’s all about where it is. America is not the biggest track and field place,” Bolt said.

“I think Paris will be big because it’s accessible and I know Paris always has a good team and good athletes over the years. So, I look forward to that,” he noted.

After a decade of Bolt-inspired global dominance, Jamaica’s men have failed to win a single track gold medal at the last two World Championships.

However, with rising young sprinters Oblique Seville and Ackeem Blake both showing considerable promise of success, Bolt believes there is a good platform for that medal drought to be broken at this year’s championships in Budapest, Hungary.

“Last year, Seville came fourth (in the 100m), so I was very impressed. Also now, there’s a young kid, Ackeem Blake, who is also stepping up. So, I think that’s a good start,” the 11-time world champion said.

“Hopefully, these two will motivate other youngsters to want to step up and want to train harder and dedicate themselves,” he reasoned.

On that note, Bolt said he would be keeping a close eye on compatriot Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce at the World Championships in August.

Fraser-Pryce, also 36, who has led Jamaica’s dominance in the women’s sprints, will be seeking a record-extending sixth world 100m title in Hungary, 14 years after making her debut in the global showpiece of track and field.

“I follow Shelly a lot because we came through the same era, so to see her continue sprinting and coming back from having a child, that’s impressive,” said Bolt.

Fresh off winning her first-ever Laureus Sportswoman of the Year Award on Monday, five-time world 100m champion Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce arrived in Nairobi, Kenya on Tuesday eager to get her season going at the Kip Keino Classic this coming weekend.

The two-time Olympic 100m gold medallist was slated to begin her season at the Botswana Golden Grand Prix on April 29, but withdrew citing a ‘family emergency’, the details of which remain a mystery. However, with the emergency hopefully behind her, the 36-year-old track and field star, said she keen on seeing where she is at this season.

“I am just looking forward to just competing well. I have not run since September last year and it’s a different year so you kind of want to see where you’re at as opposed to last year when I ran a 200m in Kingston before I came here; this time I didn’t run anything so this is me just coming to see where I’m at and having a good time and execute and I am sure it will be fantastic,” said Fraser-Pryce who ran a world-leading 10.67 at the 2022 edition.

Fraser-Pryce, who at 35 won her fifth world 100m title in Eugene, Oregon last summer to become the oldest female ever to win a global sprint title, said she believes she in great shape heading into the meet on Saturday but was quick to temper expectations on what she will deliver on Saturday.

“I am feeling good, to be honest, I’m feeling 21, which is good,” she joked, “but no two years are ever the same so you continue to work and trust that whatever things that you correct in training or things that you are working on that you would come and execute those things and it will all come together.

“But last year, it’s just to build on that, build on the experiences and the moments that I had last year into this year.”

 

 

 

Jamaica Olympic Association President Christopher Samuda released a statement on Tuesday congratulating five-time World 100m Champion Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce on being named the Laureus Sportswoman of the Year on Monday.

Fraser-Pryce won the award on her sixth attempt in a ceremony in Paris.

“I salute Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce on attaining this global feat – Laureus Sportswoman of the Year,” Samuda said to begin the statement.

The statement continues: “An indisputable sporting asset of Jamaica and the world, she has conquered and continues to conquer horizons with character, graciousness, and abiding humility.

Her indomitable spikes continue to imprint on the track of life a quality that is priceless and will be enduring. Her record-breaking speed continues to represent not only the prowess of athletics but, more importantly, the nobility of the sport.

A fitting honour for “mommy rocket,” she has rocketed into the apogee of the constellation where she continues to build an admirable legacy which historians will inscribe with reverence and respect.”

 

 

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