'It's Elaine's time' - Thompson: I'm excited, really happy
Elaine Thompson says last year's World Championships silver medal in the 200 metres was the big motivator behind her sprint to the women's 100m Olympic gold medal last night inside the Olympic Stadium in Rio de Janeiro.
Thompson clocked 10.71 seconds - the second-fastest time in Olympic women's 100m final in history - to get the better of American Tori Bowie (10.83) and Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce (10.87).
"I'm very excited. I'm really happy. Jamaica has so many talented sprinters, and to be only the second Olympic champion, I'm really happy about that. As long as it (the title) remains with Jamaica, I'm happy," Thompson said.
The sprinter from Banana Ground in Manchester became the 17th Olympic 100m champion and only the second Jamaican to top the podium in the event at the Olympic Games.
"Last year was a big motivation for me, so coming here, I was even more motivated and was determined to put in the work and train hard. I look up to Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce so much. She had such a rough season and competing with her is a honour," added Thompson.
Fraser-Pryce, who was looking to become the first woman to win three Olympic gold medals in the 100m, says she was thrilled that she was able to overcome what was her most challenging season, given a problematic toe injury, and said she was happy that Thompson - her training partner at the MVP Track Club - was able to secure the gold medal.
HAPPY FOR ELAINE
"I'm really happy I persevered. One of the things I was happy about is that Elaine (Thompson) was able to get across the line and get her gold medal. I am really happy for her. I have seen her work hard, and it was her time," Fraser-Pryce said. "In 2008, it was my time. In 2016, it is her time, and I'm happy Jamaica gets to keep the gold.
"When I started my season in 2015 and I was looking forward to this (Olympics), I never imagined something like this (injury) would happen. I was just excited to defend my title, and then the unexpected happened. Looking back, I have accomplished so much, and if I had the opportunity to sit and write this story, I wouldn't even know where to start. To be able to stand on the podium with Elaine is a wonderful feeling," Fraser-Pryce added.
Fraser-Pryce said she will be bringing her season to a close after the Olympics and will be consulting with several medical professionals, noting that a surgical procedure to correct her toe injury is "very possible."
The other Jamaican in the event, Christania Williams, finished eighth in 11.40, after apparently picking up an injury.
Thompson will now turn her attention to the 200m and the 4x100m, where she is also expected to team up with Fraser-Pryce, Veronica Campbell-Brown, Simone Facey, Sashalee Forbes and Williams.