Hard lesson for Jackson
TOKYO, Japan: As her powerful strides ate up the Tokyo Olympic Stadium’s Mondo track, pulling in the Great Britain and United States’ anchor-leg runners in the women’s 4x100m relay heats, one couldn’t help but wonder the heroics Shericka Jackson...
As her powerful strides ate up the Tokyo Olympic Stadium’s Mondo track, pulling in the Great Britain and United States’ anchor-leg runners in the women’s 4x100m relay heats, one couldn’t help but wonder the heroics Shericka Jackson may have unleashed in the 200m final a few days earlier.
Looking to conserve energy after her 100m bronze medal run less than 48 hours earlier, Jackson misjudged the pace of the incoming traffic in her 200m opening-round assignment on Monday, slowing to a crawl and ending up fourth and out of the qualifying positions for the semi-finals.
It was a crushing blow to her ambitions. Her 21.77s pace made her a clear favourite for a podium finish in an event she has declared as her favourite.
The women’s 4x100m heat provided an opportunity for quick respite for the 27-year-old, who revved up her well-rested engine in a strong finish.
The young Jamaican team, missing the recharging firepower of Elaine Thompson Herah and Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce, had to settle for third in 42.15 seconds, behind Great Britain, 41.55, and the United States, 41.90.
“I learned a hard lesson. I am heartbroken, but I am back, and I am ready to run the 4x100m,” said Jackson, who admitted to misjudging the distance between her and oncoming athletes as she watched the big screen inside the stadium.
“Iit’s part of the sport, and it’s part of life. You will come in the championship ready to run and then you lose a little bit of focus.”
Thompson Herah, who added the 200m gold medal to the 100m title won earlier in the championships, and Fraser-Pryce, who missed the 200m podium after finishing in fourth place, are both expected to replace Remona Burchell and Natasha Morrison for the 4x100m final, which is set to face the starter on Friday at 10:30 p.m. (8:30 a.m. Jamaica time).
The women’s 4x400m relay team will line up in the heats at 7:25 p.m. (5:25 a.m.), while Christopher Taylor will settle in Lane Eight in the men’s 400m final, which gets going at 9 p.m. (7 a.m.).
Taylor is the first Jamaican to feature in the men’s 400m final at the Olympic Games since Brandon Simpson and Davian Clarke finished fifth and sixth, respectively, at the Athens 2004 Games.
Jamaica has won seven medals – three gold, one silver, and three bronze – in the Tokyo Olympics.