Tue | Aug 22, 2017

‘I know I can get better’ - VCB seeks improvements as she focuses on 2017

Published:Wednesday | October 19, 2016 | 10:00 AMShayne Fairman

Despite an endearing career which began with gold medals at the World Youth Championships in1999, eight-time Olympic medallist Veronica Campbell-Brown maintains a hunger to keep improving.

The veteran athlete, though failing to win an individual medal at the 2016 summer Olympics in Rio, Brazil, has no plans to quit just yet.

"Not right now," she said when asked about retirement. "I am focusing on 2017. After 2017, I will re-evaluate and see. I am taking it one year at a time," said the decorated sprinter.

"Right now, my main focus is staying healthy and training hard and preparing for next season. I am just taking it one day at a time and just push myself as hard as I can, and just hope for a great 2017," she told The Gleaner at a ceremony for the country's Olympic and Paralympics athletes at the National Indoor Sports Centre last Saturday night.

Ahead of next year's IAAF World Championships, Campbell-Brown, a three-time World champion, is taking things step by step.

 

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"The first step is to make the Jamaican team, so that is my main focus, then go from there," stressed Campbell-Brown, who is coached by her husband, Omar Brown, who was also her schoolmate at Vere Technical.

"We know each other since high school, and so he understands me well and I understand him well, so it's working out well," she reasoned.

The 34-year-old athlete holds personal bests of 10.76 seconds in the 100m and 21.74 seconds for the 200m.

"I know I can get better, I don't know what God has in store and He has been directing my path. I just need to take care of what I need to do; I have a lot of things to improve on as an athlete," she pointed out.

"Although I have been doing this for so long, I still have stuff that I see I can improve on and if I can really get those things done then I can do better," she said.

The athlete, who has numerous accolades and titles, is the second woman in history to win two consecutive Olympic 200m events after Barbel Wockel of Germany.

"Last year overall was a good year. I can't complain, I have to give thanks for everything.

"I just know I have a lot of things to work on going

forward, and that is always good when you finish your season and know that you have stuff to improve and to improve performances," Campbell-Brown summarised.

She added that she started last season well, but hit some roadblocks. She intends to get back to the top of her game soon.

"I didn't get the result I wanted, but that's why I say it's a good place to start and know exactly how to take care of things to move forward," she emphasised.

Meanwhile, Campbell-Brown who will be one of four athletes including to be honoured with statues at the National Stadium over the next two years, said she is elated.

"That's awesome, that is an extraordinary accomplishment. I give God all the glory for that, and I thank all the people for making it possible, all those who have supported me over the years and seen it fit for me to be honoured in that way," she explained.

The other athletes who will be recognised with statues are Usain Bolt, Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce and Asafa Powell.