Sun | Jul 21, 2019

Ricketts ready to produce 15 metres

Published:Saturday | June 15, 2019 | 12:16 AMAkino Ming/Staff Reporter
Shanieka Ricketts speeds down the runway to set a meet record of 14.69m in the women’s triple jump event at the Racers Adidas Grand Prix at the National Stadium last Saturday.
Shanieka Ricketts speeds down the runway to set a meet record of 14.69m in the women’s triple jump event at the Racers Adidas Grand Prix at the National Stadium last Saturday.

Triple Jumper Shanieka Ricketts has been yearning to join the 15-metre club for some time now, and her consistency this season suggests that it could happen before the 2019 athletics season ends.

The 27- year-old leaped to a personal best of 14.76m in February of this year and has been registering 14 and a half metres consistently since.

At the Racers Adidas Grand Prix meet last weekend, Ricketts jumped a meet record of 14.69m. She followed up that performance with a 14.41m effort for third at the Bislett, Games in Oslo, Norway, on Thursday.

Along with her consistent performances, Ricketts is also relishing in the fact that she is nowhere near her peak yet as her programme is designed to get her performing at her best at the IAAF World Athletics Championships in late September.

PEAK PERFORMANCE

“I am nowhere near peaking right now, so to be able to get these great jumps is just testament to how I am improving this year, so hopefully, when I peak, I can go even farther,” Rickets told The Gleaner after competing at the Racers Adidas Grand Prix.

“My personal best is 14.76m, which I achieved this year, and I am happy I am showing consistency. I think I can get beyond 14.76m, the fact that I jumped that distance so early in the year.

“In fact, I think if I continue to be consistent with doing the right things through the phases of the jumps, I hopefully can get the 15 metres this year.”

Trecia-Kaye Smith, the national record holder in the event at 15.16m, is the only Jamaican to have gone over 15 metres.

Ricketts is second on the all-time list for Jamaica with her personal best earlier this year. Kimberly Williams, two-time Commonwealth Games champion, is third on the list with her 14.64m lifetime best.

“This is my third outing at the Racers Grand Prix, and to come out with the win and the meet record, I am just happy that I was able to [do] that in front of the home crowd,” she said last week.