Usain Bolt, Flo Jo provide keys to Thompson-Herah's record-breaking performances

By Sports Desk August 03, 2021

World-record holders Florence Griffith-Joyner and Usain may have something to do with Jamaica’s Elaine Thompson Herah shattering the former's 33-year-old Olympic record over the 100m and becoming the world's fastest woman over the 200m.

On Saturday, the 29-year-old Thompson-Herah won the Olympic 100m final in 10.61, a new Olympic record that eclipsed the 10.62 set by Florence Griffith-Joyner (Flo Jo) in Seoul in 1988. It effectively made her the second-fastest woman of all time moving her ahead of Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce who held that record since June 5 when she ran 10.63 during the Olympic Destiny Series at the National Stadium in Kingston.

On Tuesday, Thompson became the first woman to win back-to-back Olympic sprint doubles when she ran an impressive 21.53 to win the 200m in Tokyo.

Her husband, Deron Herah, a former 400m hurdler with Texas Tech University, reveals that studying the record-breaking performances of Bolt and the late American world record holder have provided insight on how to be a record-breaker herself.

“During the pandemic, she started studying Usain Bolt & Flo Jo’s record-breaking performances bit by bit. She used that to become an even better student of her events.,” he said.

 “She told me she was confident some of those records can be broken, so to get the Olympic record and to be that fast over the 200m has given her a lot of confidence.”

 Thompson Herah, a huge fan of Usain Bolt’s exploits on the track, also paid attention to aspects of his legendary races.

 “He isn’t typically a great starter, so she looked at how he maintains his composure to finish his races. Elaine also noticed that Usain does a lot of self-talk to calm his nerves and so she channels that as well,” Herah said.

 The Stephen-Francis-coached Thompson-Herah is, in her husband’s estimation, a great student of the sport.

 “To me, her level of focus and passion is unmatched. She has always been great at running the event, but with continuous rehabilitative work on her Achilles and her sights set on even more records, the sky's the limit for her.”



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