Elaine, Shelly-Ann and Shericka Expected to Perform Better at National Trials Despite Dismal Start to Season Says Stephen Francis

Saturday, June 22, 2024, 9:58 AM GMT-5

As the Paris Olympics approach, concerns have been raised regarding Jamaica’s chances at the upcoming Games, amid several less-than-stellar performances by the country’s top athletes. However, MVP track and field club coach Stephen Francis is of the opinion that Jamaica’s top female track stars, Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce, Shericka Jackson, and Elaine Thompson-Herah, may surprise audiences at the upcoming trials.

The top three have all seen delayed starts to their 2024 season, participating in only a few events ahead of the 2024 JAAA/Puma National Senior and Junior Championships, which will serve as the national selection event for the Olympics. Ahead of the trials, which are slated for June 27th–30th, Francis shared his thoughts on the performances of the athletes during an interview with TVJ.

Speaking on MVP member Shericka Jackson, Francis said the Olympian experienced a slower start to her season as she did not participate in any indoor events earlier this year. In terms of physical fitness, the coach shared that she has lost the weight she previously gained and is in as good of a form as she was last year.

Sharing his thoughts on former MVP members Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce and Elaine Thompson-Herah, Francis said he is not convinced that the pair will not perform well at next week’s trials.

“I am not sold by the performances by either Elaine or Shelly. I believe that it is not impossible for them to turn up near to their best shape. So my philosophy is we train, we prepare, we wait, and whatever they do, they do. We can’t be concerned about the performances of people who we don’t train,” Francis stated.

Jackson, who has a personal best of 10.65 seconds in the 100m, opened her season in the event with an 11.03-second win and will be competing in both the 100m and 200m at the trials. Fraser-Pryce, who has a personal best of 10.60s, opened her season with an 11.15s win and will only be participating in 100m.

Thompson-Herah, who has a personal best of 10.54s, finished last in her 100m season opener with 11.30s. Following her second last-place finish this year and an apparent injury at the NYC Grand Prix, the sprinter recently announced that she will be opting out of racing the 200m.

Watch Francis’ interview below.

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