Jamaican sprint star Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce says she is delighted with her season and is hoping to improve on her 200 meters personal best when she lines up in the event at the 2021 Monaco Diamond League meeting here on Friday.
American champion Gabby Thomas was expected to feature in the race as well, but she withdrew this week. Thomas owns the fastest time in the world this season at 21.61 seconds, which she used to win the U.S. Olympic Trials last month, and is the second-fastest woman all-time in the discipline.
Despite the absence of the world leader from the Meeting Herculis EBS in Monaco, Fraser-Pryce will still face several strong oppositions, with Olympic 400m champion Shaunae Miller-Uibo, Marie Josee Ta Lou, and Blessing Okagbare also jumping into the starting blocks on Friday.
The two-time Olympic 100m champion posted a lifetime best of 21.79s to complete a sprint double at the 2021 Jamaica Olympic trials last month, but she’s been working on a few areas of her race to improve her time.
“I know Monaco has a very good track and the last time I ran (the 200m) was in Kingston and I ran 21 and I definitely felt like there are phases in that race where I could have done better, so I am hoping to do that tomorrow,” Fraser-Pryce said at a pre-meet press conference for the meeting here in Monaco on Thursday.
“I am working on phases that will give me the advantage.”
The 2013 World Championships sprint double gold medalist is set to attempt her second Olympic Games 100m and 200m double in Tokyo, later this summer, and she admits that after all that’s happened, she’s grateful for the opportunity to be in this position.
“To be able to stand on the podium at my fourth Olympics is definitely one of the goals and I am working so hard towards it but as an athlete,” said Fraser-Pryce. “I have always understood that you take it a day at a time, a step at a time, and I think coming here to Monaco to run this 200m will definitely put me in a position to make it happen.
“I am delighted that I even have this opportunity to contend because not a lot of athletes get the opportunity to contend for a fourth Olympic Games and three Olympic gold medals so I am excited about that opportunity and I am looking forward to it.
“Things have been going great so far and I am relishing the moment, the excitement of what female sprinting has become.”