Sun | Aug 18, 2019

Powell eyes 100 sub-10s

Published:Monday | February 11, 2019 | 12:25 AM
Sprinter Asafa Powell (centre) anchors for the MVP Track Club in the men’s 4x100m relays during the Milo Western Relays at the GC Foster College of Physical Education and Sport on Saturday. The race was won by Oshane Daley (left) of Sprintec Track Club.

Even as he is still in the background phase of his training, sprinter Asafa Powell is feeling good as he starts the journey of what he hopes will be a great season culminating in fast times and the IAAF World Championships. After his race at the Western Relays on Saturday, Powell says he will race a little less and train more to get the best out of himself.

Speaking after he anchored the MVP Track Club to a close runner-up finish in the 4x100m in a race watched by an enthusiastic crowd at the GC Foster College of Physical Education and Sport, Powell had the tone of satisfaction. “I felt real good despite the fact that this is my first day on the track in four months, so I missed four months of training,” he said.

Cognisant that the World Championships arrive this year on September 27, Powell said, “We have to just take it step by step and not rush anything, cut down on the competitions, and focus more in training.”

That programme now incorporates a concession to his age. “We have to take in mind that I’m not as young anymore, so despite the body feeling great, I still have to be smart,” the 36-year-old added.

Alongside making the Jamaica team to the World Championships, he hopes to push his total of sub-10-second 100m clockings past his current tally of 97. “It’s my legacy, it’s my mark. I really want to leave in the sport, so it’s very important to me,” the 2007 and 2009 World Championships bronze medal winner remarked, “and, you know, when I hit the 100 mark, I’m definitely going to go way over.”

Powell’s total of sub-tens is by far the most in track and field history.

Faced with the possibility that a time of 9.85 seconds could earn a medal this year, he agreed. “I think it’s a winner for anybody who runs 9.85 or faster,” Powell reasoned. “They’re going to be on the number one podium.”

The fastest time in the world last year was 9.79 seconds by American Christian Coleman. Coleman was the only man to go faster than 9.85 in 2018. The fastest Jamaican was 2011 World Champion Yohan Blake, at 9.94 seconds.