Justin Gatlin believes Sha’Carri Richardson is capable of running 10.50 seconds for the 100 meters. In fact, the veteran sprinter revealed that he’s seen her gone that fast in training.
No other athlete has been in the spotlight quite as much as Richardson this season – both for her on the track accomplishments, as well as for the things that follow outside of competition – and Gatlin believes the dynamic runner is without a doubt the next sprints star for the United States.
Richardson owns a personal best of 10.72 seconds for the 100m and is the sixth-fastest woman in history in the discipline, but her last race at the 2021 Prefontaine Classic in Oregon on August 21, isn’t something she would like to see again.
The 21-year-old who was the highlighted athlete in the buildup to the Diamond League event, trailed the entire field when finishing last in 11.14sec, with Jamaica’s Olympic champion Elaine Thompson-Herah flashing to the second-fastest time ever at 10.54sec en route to winning the race and leading the way for a Jamaican 1-2-3 finish.
GATLIN WARNS JAMAICANS
Richardson’s ninth-place finish opened up the flood gates for many criticisms, but Gatlin said that performance wasn’t a genuine testimony of what his training buddy is capable of doing.
“You know what it feels like to celebrate and win. Now you know what it feels like to lose on the big stage too. She’s capable of running 10.5. I’ve seen her do it at practice,” Gatlin, the 2004 Olympic gold medalist and four-time world champion, told Chris Chavez in a Prefontaine Classic interview.
“To watch it is almost like, as being a male athlete, you still in awe because, you see the numbers put out there. I have never seen a female athlete do it.
“And to be honest, not taking anything away from Shelly-Ann [Fraser-Pryce] and Elaine for what they have done, but she is the most amazing training partner I have ever had. She is just awe in practice,” Gatlin added.