Jamaican two-time Olympic champion clocks 10.63 in Kingston to run the quickest 100m since world record-holder Florence Griffith-Joyner
Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce has underlined her Olympic credentials by becoming the second-fastest female 100m athlete in history on Saturday (June 5).
The reigning world champion, who won Olympic gold in 2008 and 2012, scorched her way to 10.63 in Kingston, Jamaica – a time which has only ever been bettered by the late Florence Griffith-Joyner, who clocked the world record of 10.49, as well as subsequent performances of 10.61 and 10.62, back in 1988.
Fraser-Pryce’s run also obliterated the world-leading mark of 10.72 which had been set by young American Sha’Carri Richardson back in April.
The Jamaican had had a quiet start to the year, coming fourth behind Britain’s Dina Asher-Smith, Richardson and world bronze medallist Marie-Josée Talou with a time of 11.51 in the wind and rain of the Gateshead Diamond League last month.
She was back to winning form in the next Diamond League meeting, in Doha, just a few days later thanks to a run of 10.84, and in Kingston she flew down the track to take victory and become the fastest woman alive at the Destiny Meeting, with Natasha Morrison a distant second in 10.95 and Kashieka Cameron third in 11.39.
Fraser-Pryce, who overtook the 10.64 of American Carmelita Jeter to become the fastest woman alive, insisted she won’t be getting complacent as she prepares to qualify for the Jamaican Olympic team at the National trials which take place on June 24-27.
“Honestly, no, I wasn’t coming out here to run that fast,” she said after her win. “This year I just wanted to break the 10.7 barrier so now I can focus on making the team to the Olympics. It’s one part of the process. I can’t get too complacent as I still have to make the national team at the national trials.”
Jeter took to social media to congratulate the performance, tweeting: “You have come back from having a child and showed the world how talented and driven you are. You are officially the fastest woman alive. Keep motivating these young queens.”
The battle for 100m supremacy in Tokyo is hotting up nicely, with Asher-Smith, Richardson and now Fraser-Pryce having laid down significant markers already this season.
It is in-keeping with the nine-time world champion to produce a top performance when under pressure. She struck 100m gold at the 2019 World Championships in Doha, having been written off by my many observers after taking time away from the sport following the birth of her son.
In an exclusive interview with AW in March, she said: “I’ve had many situations or circumstances where people question your ability or your existence or what you’re supposed to do.
“These are the moments where I seem to excel, when everything is stacked against me. At the end of the day I write my own story.
“Things have not always been smooth but I’m very optimistic. I tend to internalise my journey and everything that has happened and I always try to look at the positives, to see how this situation can help me rise. You never know what you are capable of unless you are pushed.”