Elaine Thompson-Herah broke Florence Griffith Joyner’s 33-year-old Olympic record in women’s 100 meters, becoming the first woman to run the distance in 10.49 seconds.
Elaine Thompson-Herah broke Florence Griffith Joyner’s 33-year-old Olympic record in women’s 100 meters. Thompson-Herah ran a time of 10.49 seconds, which is faster than the previous world record for this event.
TOKYO — Elaine Thompson-Herah shattered Florence Griffith Joyner’s 33-year-old Olympic record in the women’s 100 meters on Saturday, pointing to the scoreboard even before crossing the line in 10.61 seconds to defend her championship and lead a Jamaican 1-2-3.
At the 1988 Seoul Olympics, Griffith Joyner established the previous mark of 10.62.
Thompson-Herah won by.13 seconds over her closest competitor, Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce. Shericka Jackson took bronze in the 10.76 meters after switching to the shorter sprints for the Tokyo Olympics.
Since FloJo, no Olympic winner has cracked the 10.7 mark. As she neared the finish line, Herah wasn’t sure she could make it. “I knew I was going to win,” she claimed.
“I’m not sure what the pointing signifies. To demonstrate that I was clear, “she said
In the women’s 100 meters, Elaine Thompson-Herah surpassed Florence Griffith Joyner’s 33-year-old Olympic mark, crossing the line in 10.61 seconds. At the 1988 Seoul Olympics, Griffith Joyner established the previous mark of 10.62. courtesy of Getty Images
This was the first time Jamaicans have swept the medals since the women’s team done so in the 2008 Beijing Olympics, an achievement overshadowed by Usain Bolt’s world-record-breaking performance that week.
However, the Jamaican women must not be overlooked, since they have a longer history of sprinting success than the island’s males. Fraser-Pryce won the event in 2008, completing her Olympic set in the 100 meters with two golds (2008, 2012), a silver, and a bronze (2016).
In the 200, where Thompson-Herah is also the reigning champion, Fraser-Pryce and Thompson-Herah may meet again.
For days, if not months, this had been building up to be a quick race. Fraser-Pryce set the fourth-fastest time in history in June, clocking 10.63 seconds.
When the sprinters arrived in Japan, they found that Olympic Stadium had a fast track. The Jamaicans all broke 10.8 in the semifinals earlier Saturday, putting them in the top ten fastest performances in Olympic history.
Thompson-chance Herah’s came next to create history.
FloJo’s records predate almost every female sprinter, with the exception of Fraser-Pryce, who was born approximately 18 months before the American established the records. Griffith Joyner’s world record of 10.49 is still standing, and no woman has ever cleared the 10.6 barrier.
Fraser-Pryce came in believing it was her, and as she crossed the finish line in second, she looked stunned, then remained stone-faced with her hands on her hips, staring at the scoreboard.
Thompson-Herah was not taken aback. As she neared the line, she was gazing left toward the clock. Even before she arrived, she was pointing, recalling Bolt’s celebration with 10 meters to go when he ran 9.69 to establish the men’s world record in 2008.
Thompson-Herah stated, “I believe I could have gone faster if I wasn’t pointing and cheering.” “But just to demonstrate that there’s more to come. Hopefully, one day, I’ll be able to reclaim that time.”
The women’s 100m was shaping up to be the greatest event of the Olympics, ahead of the men’s sprint, which was without Bolt.
As if to emphasize that point, the men’s favorite, American sprinter Trayvon Bromell, finished fourth in his qualifying heat and had to wait almost an hour to learn whether he’d be selected for one of three wild-card places in Sunday’s semifinal round.
When pressed to explain his poor performance, he replied, “Honestly, I have no words for it.”
Another surprise occurred in the Olympic debut of the mixed 4×400 relay, when Poland took gold and Dominican Republic’s Alexander Ogando sprawled across the finish line to beat the Americans to second place.
The United States settled for bronze after being disqualified from the preliminary heat the night before, only to be restored following an appeal. Allyson Felix, who led a team to victory in this event at the world championships two years ago, was not in the starting lineup.
The men’s discus was the evening’s second medal event, with Daniel Stahl and Simon Pettersson leading a 1-2 Swedish finish. During a celebration in front of an almost empty stadium, the Swedes draped flags over their heads and ran down the backstretch on the grass.
The actual running started not long after, and Thompson-Herah found herself in a similar position — first in the Olympics, but with a time no woman had ever seen on this stage: 10.61.
- florence joyner
- elaine thompson