Thompson-Herah believes 200m world record more achievable

September 09, 2021

OLYMPIC SPRINT champion Elaine Thompson-Herah is just 0.05 away from the 100-metre world record, but she said yesterday that she believes that the 200-metre world record might be easier to break.

Speaking on the eve of the 2021 Diamond League finale in Zurich, Switzerland, Thompson-Herah indicated that she needs to start perfectly to improve the 100-metre record.

"To be honest, I would say the 200 because I ran 21.53 not getting enough recovery from running rounds the previous day, so I would say the 200 (metres) more than the 100," said Thompson-Herah, in response to a query at a pre-meet press conference before the September 8 Diamond League final in Zurich.

She was making a reference to the Olympic Games in Tokyo, where she completed the 100/200-metre double with a super run of 21.53 seconds.

The Jamaican produced that run after running the heats and the semi-finals on the previous day and after doing three races in the 100m earlier in the Games.

The 29-year-old Jamaican is the second fastest sprinter of all time in both events, with only the records by the late Florence Griffith-Joyner being superior at 10.49 and 21.34 seconds.

Thompson-Herah has improved her start this season and that has helped her to 100-metre times of 10.61 seconds in Tokyo and 10.54 seconds in Eugene, Oregon, after the Olympic Games.

Start is critical

However, she told reporters in Zurich the start is critical in the shorter race.

"The 100 (metres), you have to nail that start and my start is not that perfect yet, so I would say the 200 (metres world record)," she remarked.

She is contesting the 100m in Zurich and hopes to bring the curtains down on a very successful season.

"I hope tomorrow is going to be my last. I'm just hoping to give it my all tomorrow," she added.

A win would give her a US$30,000 jackpot.

In her last race, she clocked 10.72 seconds at the Paris leg of the Diamond League. A similar performance would break the Zurich meet record, which is 10.76 seconds by Evelyn Ashford in 1984. That run by Ashford established a world record at the time.

Olympic sprint hurdles champion Hansle Parchment is also included among an 11-strong contingent of Jamaicans competing on today's final day of the meet.

Parchment won recently at the Paris Diamond League meeting on August 28, slicing over the 110-metre hurdles in 13.03 seconds. His time in Paris was his fastest of the season and was just 0.02 off the best by a Jamaican in 2021 - 13.01 seconds by 2016 Olympic champion Omar McLeod.

The other Jamaicans down to compete for the season-ending Diamond jackpot are Olympic bronze medallists Megan Tapper (100m hurdles), Ronald Levy (110-metre hurdles) and Shericka Jackson (200m), Olympic finalists Shanieka Ricketts (triple jump), Kimberly Williams (triple jump), Natoya Goule (800m) and Stephenie-Ann McPherson (400m), and 2015 World Champion Danielle Williams (100m hurdles).

Danniel Thomas-Dodd, the 2019 World silver medallist, finished fifth in yesterday's women's shot put final with a 18.34 metres. The United States' Maggie Ewen won in 19.41m, while Portugal's Auriol Dongmo threw 18.86m for second. Sweden's Fanny Roos took third with 18.75m.

Norway's Olympic 400-metre hurdles champion, Karsten Warholm, destroyed his own world record in Tokyo, lowering it to 45.94 seconds. At the Zurich press conference, he explained that it has been difficult to motivate himself after that.

"That's not something you're going to do every day so it's tough going in there and motivating yourself because the last two or three years when I've been racing, I've been racing to try and break the world record and now I have it and I have to find new terms and yes, it's going to be a process. But I'm always motivated for training and that's a good start, I guess," he revealed.

Warholm, who broke the 29-year-old mark of 46.78 seconds by Kevin Young before his monumental Tokyo flash, will hurdle in Zurich.

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