BERLIN — Jamaican Brigitte Foster-Hylton, who almost quit the sport, ran a season’s best 12.51secs to finally win a gold in the women’s 100m hurdles at the world athletics championships on Tuesday.
Foster-Hylton had won world bronze in Helsinki in 2005 and silver in Paris in 2003, but ran brilliantly to secure the gold at Berlin’s Olympic Stadium.
Foster-Hylton won ahead of out Canada’s Olympic bronze medallist Priscilla Lopes-Schliep who ran 12.54secs, while another Jamaican Delloreen Ennis-London took third in 12.55.
The 34-year-old initially danced a jig of delight with Lopes-Schliep when the pair realised they had both medalled, but the Jamaican then slumped to the track as her emotions got the better of her.
"This is an amazing feeling. I give it all to my coach [Stephen Francis]," she said. "Before the race, I visualized it and told myself to close the eyes after the last hurdle in order to give everything.
"So on the finish line I did not know that I was first because my eyes were closed. Then Priscilla told me I won! I have waited many years for this title, it has been five years since Paris, since I found myself in gold medal shape."
Her delight was in sharp contrast to both Beijing silver-medallist Sally McLellan from Australia and Olympic gold medallist Dawn Harper of the United States.
Harper had earlier scorched into the final with a personal best in Wednesday evenings semi-final when she flew over the hurdles in 12.48sec to throw down the gauntlet to her rivals.
But in the final, two and a half hours later, she could only clock 12.81sec to finish seventh while McLellan finished a disappointing fifth in a time of 12.70sec.
There was delight for Ireland’s Derval O’Rourke who ran a new national record of 12.67sec to finish fourth, but just out of the medals.