Thompson-Herah aims for historic three-peat at Paris Olympics despite set backs

ATHLETICS Thompson-Herah aims for historic three-peat at Paris Olympics despite set backs

Festus Chuma 22:00 - 31.03.2024

Elaine Thompson-Herah is optimistic about the Olympics, having made a strong comeback after overcoming recent challenges.

The fastest woman alive, Elaine Thompson-Herah, has set her sights firmly on the 2024 Paris Olympic Games where she aims to defend her double sprint titles.

The Jamaican sprinter, who has been a dominant force in the 100m and 200m events, is not just fighting to maintain her reign but also battling against the adversities that have marred her journey.

After overcoming a season marred by injuries, Thompson-Herah's recent move to train under Reynaldo Walcott, alongside fellow Olympic champion Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce, marks a significant shift in her preparation strategy.

"It has been great. My schedule has changed with a different system and different coach so I’m just trying to get accustomed to that and I think I’m in a good place right now and I’m happy about that," Thompson-Herah shared in a candid conversation with Citius Mag.

This change comes after a tumultuous 2023 season, during which she battled persistent injuries that almost pushed her to the brink of retirement.

However, despite these challenges, her unwavering faith and resilience saw her through culminating in a promising performance at the JAAA All Comers Meet at Jamaica College.

Her early season performances indicate that Thompson-Herah is finding her stride once again. Despite the setbacks, she has maintained a laser focus on her fitness.

"I feel good. It’s like if you have a car and have to service the car. My duty is to make sure that my body is fine-tuned and always ready for the goal. The key focus is to always stay healthy," she stated.

Looking ahead to Paris, the specter of pressure looms large, not from the expectations of others, but from the challenges of staying injury-free.

"Only time I ever feel pressure is if I have an injury," Thompson-Herah admitted.

With the sprint double victory at both the Rio 2016 and Tokyo 2021 Olympics, Thompson-Herah is on the verge of accomplishing what no woman has ever done before: winning the 100m and 200m titles at three consecutive Olympic Games.

Amidst her preparations, Thompson-Herah shared her philosophy on handling pressure, especially with the high stakes of achieving a historic three-peat in Paris.

"The only time I ever feel pressure is if I have an injury. The pressure is trying to wonder how can I fix this injury fast to make to the Olympics," she explained.

Thompson-Herah's ambition extends beyond defending her titles as she is eyeing Florence Griffith-Joyner's world record of 10.49 seconds in the 100 meters, a feat that has stood unmatched since 1988.

With a personal best of 10.54 seconds, Thompson-Herah is tantalizingly close to rewriting history, a possibility that adds another layer of excitement to her campaign in Paris.

Despite the setbacks faced in the 2023 season, including missing out on individual events at the World Championships and settling for silver in the 4x100m relay team, Thompson-Herah's spirit remains unbroken.

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