Sun | Nov 18, 2018

Thompson happy to be No. 1

Published:Friday | January 5, 2018 | 12:00 AMHubert Lawrence
Jamaica's Elaine Thompson celebrates winning the women's 100 metres at the International Mohammed VI track and field meet in Rabat, Morocco, last year.

Though she is still disappointed about her loss at last year's World Championships, Elaine Thompson is pleased to have been world-ranked number 1 in the 100 metres by the US publication Track and Field News.

Speaking this week in Kingston, Thompson says that she is motivated to work even harder in 2018. She also indicated that she is aiming to compete again at the World Indoor Championships.

The 25-year-old sprinter was not only ranked number 1 in the 100 by Track and Field News but also won enough votes from its 37-member international panel of experts to be named the tenth-best female athlete of 2017 across all disciplines.

"Honestly, when I got the news, I had to read the article like two times," she said.

"It's a great feeling," she smiled.

Reflecting on a year when she won all but one of her nine 100-metre finals and produced the two fastest times of the year at 10.71 and 10.78 seconds, respectively, the MVP Track Club star was thankful.

"I realise that I had a great season though I lost the World Championships, but I still can't dwell on that," she determined. "I think the season was a big motivation for me and that gives me a big boost to even work harder and each year for me is a greater year and a bigger year because, you know, to be the fastest woman in the world or to be on top is not any easy journey and still the journey doesn't end," she resolved.

 

NO EXCUSES

 

Moments after a satisfying sprint workout on the campus of the University of Technology, the double Olympic champion still isn't making any excuses about the London loss. Though it is widely known that she was the victim of a stomach bug that affected several others, she said, "You're sick during training, you're sick during races, you just have to know how to hold your composure."

During 2017, she also won two of four trips over 200 metres, scoring with a best time of 21.98 seconds. During the indoor season, she zipped 6.98 seconds for 60 metres and she is heading indoors again this year.

"Well I've spoken to my coach," she said of the MVP stalwart Stephen Francis, "and he had suggested indoors."

Third in the 60 metres at the 2016 World Indoor Championships, she said: "I'm looking forward to that because as you can see, this season is not a major championship, even though we have the Commonwealth Games, but I'm looking forward for the World Indoors and, hopefully, to go there and do my best as usual."

That meet will take place in Birmingham, England, from March 1 to 4.

She is still contending with the Achilles tendon problems that affected her in 2017.

"I just have to get the body, stretch it, do the flexibility work that I can do to help me go through the season, but at this point," she informed, "it's holding up, just hopefully, for the entire season. I don't feel any pain."

No decision has yet been made about her possible participation in the Commonwealth Games, which are set for April in Australia. She also isn't sure which of the sprint events she will favour when the outdoor season begins in earnest.

"The year has just started so we haven't spoken much about what the season will entail," she replied.