Tag Archives: Justin Gatlin

What Happened to Team Jamaica at World Champs, London?!

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Men’s 100m FINAL

Usain Bolt was beaten in his last race! He got the Bronze.

Young Christian Coleman got Silver and fellow rival, Yohan Blake finished 4th. That leaves Justin Gatlin!

Gatlin who has been quiet all season with a point to prove, proved his point, quieting the boos from the crowd who haven’t forgiven him for his doping suspension even though he served his time.

Gatlin made it look deceiving in the Semis. He placed 2nd to Akani Simbine in the slowest SemiFinal, drawing Lane 8, possibly so he could be far from Bolt in the Final and see everyone who couldn’t see him.

What happened to Usain Bolt?!

Bolt’s preparation was probably the worst ever for this season with a loss of 3 weeks to his friend’s Germaine Mason’s death as well as more time due to injuries.

His body gave up on him too. With age and injuries on top of a bad start, he could no longer power himself past the 50 or 60m line to destroy his field of opponents. He did everything physically possible to reach the line with Coleman and Gatlin. But it still wasn’t good enough because he is not used to being so far behind coming up to the line with no power. He panicked and started to lean too early. With his foot across the line early and the 2nd slowest reaction time of 0.183 in the race to Coleman’s 0.123 and Gatlin’s 0.138, he ran the fastest race.

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If Usain took one more step as the taller man, just as Coleman did, I believe he would have edged out Gatlin for the win.

So it wasn’t a surprising result, but a disappointing result. It was a fairytale ending that wasn’t meant to be. It not only showed that Bolt is human, but it was a lesson taught and inspiration to many, that if you try hard enough, you can beat the best and be the best. After the best have won over and over again, a small part of the motivation to win is lost as well.

Gatlin could never beat Usain at his best or in good shape. However, Bolt still reigned as the fastest man in the world and we cannot discredit Gatlin’s determination after never being able to beat Bolt, to finally beat him and win the Gold at his age. Sadly it happened at a time when Bolt will not run another race to answer. Bolt was gracious in defeat and we should be too.

Bolt said to Jamaica – ‘Sorry about that’. He knows how we can be with just one disappointment on the big stage. He surely cannot please everyone. Let us remember that if it was entirely up to Bolt he would have retired at the RIO Olympics 2016, but under the encouragement and influence of PUMA and the IAAF, they wanted him to come back to Worlds for a filled stadium and for the fans. We saw how hard it was for Usain to get the Gold in the 100m at RIO, much less a year later. I would have preferred for him to finish winning as most of us would, but there are others who may not care about the results of his last race, whether it was a win, lose or draw. They just wanted to see him run one more time. Thankfully he was realistic with himself and left his winning streak in his preferred 200m event, safe.

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Thanks for everything you have done for Jamaica and Athletics Usain Bolt! We will miss you (Photo: AMP. Firstpost)

Bolt led a winning era for us from 2008 Beijing. That is almost a decade. We have a lot to be thankful for. So this brings me to Elaine Thompson losing in the Women’s 100m FINAL.

It was considered sure money for Elaine to win the Women’s 100m. She had the winning time, jogging in the Semis. So to place 5th, something must have gone wrong. None of us wanted that to happen at such a huge event, where we expected her to deliver Gold to lift Jamaica after Usain’s Bronze the day before. What made it worse?

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Tori Bowie (10.85) of the USA won Gold. She dipped at the line to edge out Ivory Coast’s Marie Josée Ta Lou (10.84) who got Silver and Dafne Schippers got the Bronze (10.96).

What went wrong for Elaine?!

Thankfully, she did not injure herself. She has been suffering with an achilles tendon injury, but this did not play a part in her loss.

She stated that she stumbled coming out of the drive phase, isn’t sure why and could not recover fast enough to pass the others who were already far ahead of her to the finish line.

Our local tv panel explained how this was possible. With her running at such a fast speed, to come out of a drive phase quickly would be like hitting a wall. We saw when she literally jerked back at about 50m. To lose focus or for something to go wrong for just a few thousandths of a second in an 11-second race, the field would already have left her behind. She still showed great effort to finish 5th. I have witnessed our Pcket rocket, Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce come last in a 100m Diamond league race because she failed to recover from a bad start. People wondered what went wrong but she wasn’t crucified for it because it was not a big race.

These things can happen and she was in good spirits to continue with the 4×100m, refusing to blame the loss on anything else that was going on. As it later came out that she was seen vomiting in the warm up area after the Semis.

So yes this may have happened to Elaine but we didn’t even take the time to consider it and haven’t accepted it because we are looking at the bigger picture that it was another win for the USA in the sprint. Her coach, Stephen Francis also let her put all her eggs in one basket since she is not entered to run the 200m.

It is also a huge upset because USA has been our biggest rival for years. We have been on top for almost a decade and trust me, it took what seems like forever to get there. In a time where it was speculated more than half of the USA athletes were on drugs and doping regulations were not as strict, we painfully watched our hard working athletes such as Merlene Ottey, Juliet Cuthbert, Grace Jackson and more, get Silver and Bronze medals time and time again, always falling short of the Gold. We cried with them each time. We were also stuck watching the extremely biased USA feed to go along with it, rubbing salt into our wounds. We suffered. As a result, when Sprint athletes like Marion Jones and Justin Gatlin were given doping bans, it was like we were finally being freed from a great injustice. But so much damage had been done already, for instance with the Women’s 100m World record being totally unattainable, it left us being a bitter nation. So with the field leveled at a time when we had young and upcoming athletes like Usain bolt and Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce, along with the veteran Veronica Campbell Brown and more, the timing was right for total redemption in Beijing 2008. Jamaica showed total dominance in the sprints with both the Men and the Women, shocking the Americans who thought it was a one-time fluke. But oh no, this continued to RIO 2016. We have not only been spoilt but developed an arrogance through bitterness.

All is not lost though. It is a change of the guard and we may have to wait again until others rise, but Elaine is still young and as she said, she has many more races to come.

There is a good outlook for us in Field events too. Fedrick Dacres finished 4th in the Discus throw. It was not his personal best, but that will come at the right time once he keeps working at it. We had Traves Smikle, who also made it to the Final round.

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Photo: The Jamaica Gleaner

We also have …

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Omar McLeod

Young Omar McLeod won Gold in the Men’s 110m, lifting Jamaica’s spirits and dedicated the Gold to Usain Bolt.

So keep the faith and be patient Jamaica. Stand by our Athletes win or lose because we are a talented nation and again we will RISE.

Continue to enjoy the sport, stay tuned for today’s Schedule that starts later this afternoon with hot races to look out for!

 

By: Gabrielle Burgess

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Throwback Tuesday to RIO Olympic Moments!

JAMAICA LEFT RIO WITH 11 MEDALS !!!

Other than some disappointments with the Results of Athletes in Field events, Alia Atkinson finishing last in her Final in the Pool and some Athletes suffering injuries shortly before the Olympics, Jamaica just fell short of 1 medal according to what was expected.

Looking at Quality over Quantity, Little but Tallawah Jamaica did quite well considering the current change in Generation of our Athletes. Jamaica finished with 6 Gold, 3 Silver and 2 Bronze Medals, placing an overall 23rd on the Medals table and 3rd in Athletics behind the USA and Kenya. Some Veterans failed to make it to RIO, some announced RIO may be their last Olympics and other Vets will hang around for Worlds next year, while the young ones are still blooming. However, a few bloomed early, such as Elaine Thompson, Omar McLeod and Shericka Jackson. We have a lot to be thankful for and we are proud of all of our Athletes and the tremendous effort they put out for the World to see.

Let us not only relive Great Moments from our Athletes but Highlight some of the Greats from other Countries and Islands as well.

Usain Bolt completing his first Triple, winning Gold in the Men’s 100m.

Watch “Usain Bolt Wins 2016 RIO OLYMPICS 100m Men’s Final FULL Video” on YouTube here:


Elaine Thompson winning the Women’s 100m, separating herself from the field in 10.71s.

Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce going for history to be the first woman to get the Triple in the Olympics 100m, but getting the Bronze after Jamaica prayed for her toe following the Semi-Final that she won in tears from the pain.

Watch “women 100M finals Rio 2016” on YouTube here:

 

Photo: http://www.ewn.co.za

Wayde Van Niekerk of South Africa breaking the 17-year old World Record in the Men’s 400m set by Michael Johnson in 1999 from Lane 8!

Watch “World Record for men 400m Set by Wayde Van Niekerk in Rio 2016 finals” on YouTube here:

Simone Biles of the USA’s Final Five, winning 4 Gold and a Bronze, making up a combined total of 19 Olympic and World Championship medals. She is currently the most decorated American Artistic Gymnast after Shannon Miller of the Magnificent Seven, who held that record for 20 years.

Michael Phelps of the USA still managing to dominate his individual races and play a significant role in his team’s relays, winning 5 Gold and 1 Silver. He retired from the Olympics to a standing ovation and of course not only as the most decorated Swimmer, but the most decorated Olympian ever in history with 28 medals, more than some countries have ever achieved.

Yona Knight-Wisdom making the Semi-Final of the 3m Springboard Diving Competition. He fell marginally short from making the Final but definitely has the potential to return and do even better!

Photo: Getty Images

Omar McLeod being the 1st Jamaican man to win Gold in the Men’s 110m Hurdles.

Christophe LeMaitre of France, known for continuous determination, finally winning his first individual Olympic medal, a Bronze in the Men’s 200m.

Usain Bolt completing the Sprint Double by winning Gold for the Men’s 200m. 

Elaine Thompson passing the Dutchie, Dafne Schippers on the left hand side to win the Women’s 200m and the Sprint Double which has not been done since 1988.

Watch “Jamaica win 200m final rio olimpic Elaine Thomson” on YouTube here:

Jamaica being the 1st country to have a Man and Woman sweep the 100m and 200m in the Olympics in the same year #Jaminate

Shaunae Miller of the Bahamas winning the Gold in spectacular fashion for the Women’s 400m ahead of USA’s Allyson Felix and our Shericka Jackson getting the Bronze.

Jamaica’s Aisha Praught making the Final of the Women’s 3000m Steeplechase.

☆ Great Britain’s ‘Mo’ Farah falling and getting up back then showing the thumbs up sign in the Men’s 10000m with 14 laps to go, then continuing to win the Gold. He also won Gold in the Men’s 5000m.

☆ Ethiopia’s David Rudisha Defending his 800m title, winning the Gold.

Javon ‘Donkey Man’ Francis anchoring the Men’s 4×400m Relay starting his leg from way behind and taking them to Silver!

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Brazil winning their first Olympic Gold in Football in front of their home crowd in a Penalty shoot out versus Germany with their star, Neymar scoring the winning Penalty kick.

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Photo: time.com

Usain Bolt sealing the deal, cementing himself in history as the G.O.A.T by anchoring his team of Asafa Powell, Yohan Blake and Nickel Ashmeade to Gold in the Men’s 4×100m Relay and thus completing the Triple-Treble.

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Next stop for our Athletes? London World Championships 2017!

By: Gabrielle Burgess


If you liked this blog, follow Suga Lifestyle or like the Suga Lifestyle Facebook page.

Gold and Bronze to start the Medal Tally for Jamaica in Beijing!

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Congratulations to our first medal winner of the World Championships in Beijing 2015, O’Dayne Richards for winning the Bronze in Shot Put! A first for Jamaica at a senior World Championship, as we now start to widen our dominance in the sport. Richards finished with 21.69, a new National record. He set the mark going into the lead at one point, putting the pressure on the American and German to surpass that mark. They went on to go over the 22 mark, which Richards says his aim is for the future.

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Now, for the race the world was waiting for. The Legendary USAIN BOLT delivered, winning the Men’s 100m Men’s Final in Beijing in 9.79s ahead of Justin Gatlin’s 9.80s! The odds were against him to win. Literally. 1.85 to Justin Gatlin and 1.90 to Usain Bolt. Usain has been plagued with injuries and has hardly been able to compete all season. This should be difficult for any athlete to recover from, much less win. His last race was in London at a Diamond League meet, where he ran 9.87s. So I understand the feeling of doubt by Jamaicans and others. But if there was no sign of panic in Usain’s camp, the ‘BIG MAN’ said he was ready and from you watched his heat on Saturday morning, that doubt should have vanished. Nerves were there, naturally more than usual with a fake smile and less jovial antics at the start, however his confidence was there as well.

Gatlin now, has been practically running sub 9.8 all season. But guess what? He did not do that after rounds. Those were one-off races without the pressure of the real ‘Big Man’, Usain Bolt. Gatlin tightened up from 50m. We all know that if Bolt is ahead at 50m, with the start he had, it means ‘Catch me if you can’. Seeing the race slip away from him even further and possible memories of the last time he met and was beat by Bolt in Moscow 2013, Gatlin literally buckled under the pressure and started begging for the line from about 10m out.

If Gatlin focused on his own race instead of watching Bolt, could he have clipped Bolt at the line? No. Suga thinks Bolt would have felt him coming and since he has now been described as a super hero, would have flown across the line. Anyhow, ‘coulda, shoulda, never’! Gatlin just never won and no matter what he tried, running his own race or not, he would not have beat Bolt in that final. Who told him to run 9.77 in the semis and overwork his legs? Unnecessary and foolish. If Bolt didn’t stumble and have to run hard to play catch up and win in his semi-final, the outcome could have been even more embarrassing for Gatlin. So he messed up and he knew it. All those sub 9.8s didn’t matter after the final yesterday. He could not beat the ‘World Boss’, hence the choking back of tears in one of his interviews afterwards. You would think he would humble himself now, but not at all after various delusional tweets about how he let Bolt win and he will break the World record in Rio etc. Remember Gatlin, we still have the 200m to go!

Oh wait, the usual question after a 100m major final is finished, where was Asafa? The ‘Sub 10 King’ failed to live up to his title by placing 7th in 10.00s. He ran to the line this time though. It is clear after a hard run in the semis with Tyson Gay that his legs just did not have any more strength to medal in the final. I have thought for a long time that Asafa should attempt the 200m to develop more endurance in the 100m. Sadly it may be too late for that now, as age is not on his side. But thanks for at least making a decent effort this time.

Speaking of 200m, if Usain decides to run, he is ready. Look out for the Canadian, De Grasse, as Suga thinks he is even better at the 200m than the 100m, so will be a threat to Jamaica’s Warren Weir and even Gatlin.

Continue to enjoy the Championships and stay tuned to Suga Lifestyle! Now let us watch that 100m final AGAIN!

The Track was hot over the weekend for Jamaica AND US Trials!

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The JAAA National Senior Trials were not the same without Usain Bolt, but he better be getting his act together. Suga has no doubt he will be ready for the Olympics in Rio, Brazil, 2016 but he is in trouble with regards to his current form heading into the World Championships in Beijing this August. Now Usain faced injuries earlier in the season, so that may be a partial reason for his set back. However, he is not getting younger either. The body is very ungrateful and this is Usain’s last chance to dominate the 100m and 200m at the Olympics before he retires. With Bolt being beaten at the Jamaica trials before London Olympics 2012 by Yohan Blake, he should have taken that as a lesson that even though he has a natural ability to win, as he gets older he still has to train diligently. So kudos to him for pulling off London 2012 but now we have Justin Gatlin as a threat in the World Championships with his World leading times and the best form of his life, supposedly undoped. Usain should not have gone to Trinidad carnival and kept up other various activities. It was way too close to the season. Give it a break for 2 years. Now he has to pull off a great feat to be ready for Worlds after a horrible 200m time about 2 weeks ago. There is no way he can allow USA’s Justin Gatlin to beat him at Worlds. For pride and ego alone. Gatlin is not only Usain’s main rival but Jamaica’s rival and enemy as well. So get it together Usain!

I was going to talk about what occurred at trials right? Yes. A lot occurred. Unfortunately Yohan Blake has not broken 10 seconds in all six of his 100m races since the first season of two that ended in hamstring injuries in 2013. Last Friday night was no different when Blake failed to even qualify for the final, clocking a slow 10.36s. He was entered in the 200m as well for another chance but did not compete. ASAFA POWELL on the other hand is back in his prime form! He has been running extremely well, speeding up instead of slowing down in the last 30m, now being trained by a new coach, his brother. He won the 100m Men’s final in 9.84s. Can he go sub 9.8s though? He needs to do so. Nickel Ashmeade finished 2nd and Kemar Bailey Cole finished 3rd. Nesta Carter had a brilliant start but fell short toward the end finishing 4th, so he will miss out on a chance to compete in the event. It is likely that he will still be carried for the relays. But look out everyone! Young, shorty, Trayvon Bromell (19 yrs) ran 9.84s in the heats of the US trials then 9.76s in the semis! He has been running well on the circuit and is definitely one to watch. He ran 9.96s in the final, finishing 2nd to Tyson Gay who ran 9.87s.

Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce was not her usual pleasant self and certainly meant business, shutting up all who doubted her and quieted the current controversy of having her run the 100m and not Elaine Thompson. Elaine Thompson, trained by Steven Francis as well, has been put to compete in the 200m only, after running some excellent times in the 100m at previous events. Steven Francis was praised last night for making the right decision and for knowing what he is doing, but if someone is doing well, all politics should be put aside and Elaine should be allowed to go for both and realise her dreams. But we shall see. Their coach may know best after all. With that said, both were winners this weekend. Shelly aka Pocket Rocket blew away the field Friday night, winning the 100m Women in an impressive 10.79s! Natasha Morrison finished 2nd and Veronica Campbell-Brown (VCB) 3rd. Hold up tho! Torie Bowie ran 10.81s at the US trials while Carmelita Jeter failed to make the US team finishing 7th in the final. She seemed to be injured as she fell to the ground after the race. We have not even factoried in Nigeria’s Blessing Okagbare or Ivory Coast’s Murelle Ahoure as yet!

Yesterday, Birthday girl, Elaine Thompson treated herself to a convincing win in the Women’s 200m finishing in 22.51s. Word from the US is that Allyson Felix may not be competing in the 200m at Worlds because the 200m semis and 400m final are 70m apart at Worlds. Sherone Simpson finished second and VCB 3rd. Simone Facey finished 4th and an old favourite of ours, Kerron Stewart could only manage to finish 5th. Note that there were windy conditions and so the headwind was recorded as -2.4s for the Women’s 200m final.

For the Men’s 200m, Nickel Ashmeade won in 20.36s followed by Warren Weir in 20.40s and Julian Forte in 3rd with 20.51s. The headwind was recorded as -2.6s. News came in that Justin Gatlin recorded a PB of 19.57s at the US trials. Suga has not seen Gatlin run the 200m recently to judge what time he could go to but for the 100m he seems to go all out for at least the first 80 or 90m then slow down. Since for the 100m he has been running consistently at about 9.75s,  it is likely that he can run sub 9.7s but not much below. So probably 9.67/9.68s, the least. So with a Usain Bolt on top of his form plus his natural talent, Gatlin should not be able to beat him no matter how fast his start is. How fast can young Trayvon Bromell go though?

Other highlights were great runs by Christine Day winning the 400m in 50.16s. She has been running well but needs to push below 50s. At least she has done better than US trial winner, Allyson Felix who ran 50.19s to upset Natasha Hastings. Sanya Richards-Ross failed to qualify for the final! Javon ‘Donkey Man’ Francis has won his first National meet  in the 400m Men with 44.70s. Former Manchester High and Kingston College Old boy, Omar McLeod (21 yrs) now representing the University of Arkansas beat favourite and 2012 Olympic Bronze Medalist, Hansle Parchment (13.08s SB) in the 110m hurdles in a world leading, 12.97s!

Well done Athletes! Looking forward to an extremely competitive World Championship in Beijing this August!