TOKYO, Japan — Sprint star Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce revealed that she and her teammates wanted to win the women’s 4x100m relay as a tribute to Elaine Thompson-Herah who had already won a pair of gold medals in the sprints in Tokyo.
Jamaica entered the women’s 4x100m relay final as the overwhelming favourites and a strong candidate to break the world record of 40.82 seconds.
The team of Briana Williams, Thompson-Herah, Fraser-Pryce and Shericka Jackson missed breaking the world record, but set a national record and posted the second-fastest time ever of 41.02s to take the gold medal at the Olympic Stadium on Friday.
The victory in the sprint relay improved Thompson-Herah’s gold medal tally at the Tokyo 2020 Olympics to three, following her 100m and 200m title runs earlier at the Games and Fraser-Pryce said the focus was the get the baton around safely to make sure that her former training partner “got a third gold medal.”
“As an elite athlete, I was ready for the opportunity to carry the stick around,” a proud Fraser-Pryce said. “We got the national record, but we didn’t get the world record we wanted.
“We wanted for Elaine to get the three gold medals, and we did that.”
Meanwhile, after failing to bring home the gold medal at the last three Olympic Games (2008, 2012 and 2016) – Fraser-Pryce said she was delighted to finally get back to the top, noting that the win was even more special as it came on Independence Day in Jamaica.
“We are so grateful to win this gold medal for Jamaica on national independence day,” the two-time Olympic 100m champion said. “For two years we have been unimpressive, you know, so to get it back today is special.”
She added: “The main focus was getting the baton around. We knew once we got it around we would do very well.
“…We are all going home with a gold.”