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50 and counting! - Fraser-Pryce hits sub-11 milestone

Published:Sunday | July 28, 2019 | 12:35 AMHubert Lawrence - Sunday Gleaner Writer

Fraser-Pryce
Fraser-Pryce

When Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce crossed the finish line in the 100 metres at last week’s London Diamond League, she added another milestone to her extensive portfolio of achievements.

With the clock showing 10.78 seconds, Fraser Pryce had recorded her 50th trip under the 11-second barrier in the 100m. The time moved her past Veronica Campbell-Brown on an elite list of speedsters.

Fraser-Pryce matched her compatriot’s massive career total of sub-11 times in the London heats when she clocked 10.95 seconds and moved ahead in the final. Campbell-Brown may add to her compilation of fast times should she return to the track next season, but for the time being, Fraser-Pryce is second only to the monumental total of 67 sub-11 clockings by the legendary Merlene Ottey.

Like Ottey and VCB, the 32- year-old Fraser-Pryce has been blessed with a long sojourn at the top level of sprinting. Her first sub-11 clocking – 10.85 seconds – came at the 2008 National Senior Championships, where she placed second to Kerron Stewart.

The MVP Track Club newcomer announced herself to the world with a stunning upset win at the Beijing Olympics and followed that with a close win over Stewart in the 2009 World Championships.

Machine-gunned her rivals

Since then, she won Olympic gold and bronze medals in the 100m and a silver in the 2012 200m final as well as gold in the 2013 World Championships in the 100m and 200m and the 2015 100m.

Along the way, the Stephen Francis-coached sprinter has machine-gunned her rivals with fast times.

In 2015, her most productive sub-11 season, the diminutive speed merchant battered the former barrier 10 times. In 2019, with the World Championships set for September 28 in the Qatari city of Doha, she has already clocked seven such times.

The woman who edged her to the 2019 National title, Olympic 100m and 200m champion Elaine Thompson, has stepped past the 11-second threshold in 28 different trips to the track. Fraser-Pryce and Thompson, teammates at the MVP, share the Jamaican record of 10.70 seconds.