Triple jumper Ricketts aiming at 15 metres
Once she remains injury-free, Olympian Shanieka Ricketts will do well in the triple jump at the World Championships in London this August. That's the expectation from her husband and coach Kerry-Lee Ricketts.
Speaking last Saturday at Western Championships in Montego Bay, coach Ricketts believes that a 15 metres jump is within Shanieka's capabilities.
Injuries hampered their efforts last season, but the troubles have directed them to injury prevention.
"So far, she hasn't had any injuries as such", he reported. "We're making her do work to make sure she's strong in all the right areas so we can keep an injury-free season," he outlined, "and we are looking forward to going to the World Championships and do well."
Ricketts was cautious about predicting a distance target for his wife, who was 11th in the 2015 World Championships after a college career that saw the Vere Technical High School graduate winning three NCAA titles for San Diego State University and Inter-collegiate gold medals for the University of the West Indies.
"You know what?" he offered. "This season, I'm not going to talk numbers.
"Last season, we had her, expecting her to go over 15 metres", he related. We expect her to go over 15 metres again," said the coach. Her personal best is 14.57 metres.
At six feet tall and 145 pounds, Ricketts is similar in build to world triple jump record holder Inessa Kravets. Her coach acknowledges the similarities to the Ukrainian, who set the record of 15.50 metres in 1995 and, has adopted some of the training drills Kravets used to do.
The combination of injury-free training for the 25-year-old athlete so far and the renewed training regime has the coach anticipating her first competition on March 25 at the UWI Invitational.