Elaine Thompson-Herah’s Achievements on the Track: Her Rise and Major Medals

Saturday, June 8, 2024, 7:03 AM

Despite her recent difficulties, the list of achievements on the track attained by Jamaican Olympian Elaine Thompson-Herah is unquestionable, as the athlete remains the fastest woman alive over the 100m. Born and raised in Manchester, Thompson-Herah began her sprinting career as a high school athlete, running for Christiana High School and Manchester High.

Later recruited to join the VP track club at the University of Technology, the young athlete began garnering attention after becoming the fifth-fastest woman in history with a silver medal win in the 200m at the 2015 World Athletics Championships.


It was the following year, at the 2016 Rio Olympics, that Thompson-Herah would truly shine on the global athletic stage. The then 24-year-old claimed her very first Olympic medal, claiming first place in the 100m in 10.71s ahead of American Tori Bowie and fellow Jamaican sprinter Shelly-Ann Fracer-Pryce.

She went on to secure a second victory in the 200m in 21.78s, becoming the first woman since Florence Griffith-Joyner and the first female Jamaican sprinter to win both the 100m and 200m at the same Olympic Games. Thompson-Herah also nabbed a silver medal with team Jamaica in the 4x100m relay.

The 2016 athletic season also saw Thompson-Herah claim her first Diamond League medal. Following a standout performance at the 2016 Olympics, Thompson-Herah reigned triumphant at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, retaining her titles.

Twenty-nine years old at the time, Thompson-Herah was bouncing back from an injury when she secured gold in the 100m and the 200m in 10.61s and 21.53s, respectively. Her victories put her in the history book as the first female sprinter ever and the second sprinter after Usain Bolt to win the sprint double at consecutive Olympic Games.

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Like the 2016 Olympics, Thompson-Herah went on to claim a third medal in the 4x100m relay, this time taking home gold, making her the third sprinter after Griffith-Joyner and Bolt to complete an Olympic sprinting triple.

After the Tokyo Games, Thompson-Herah would further leave her mark on athletic history in 2021 in Eugene, U.S.A. Competing at the Prefontaine Classic, she secured the coveted title as the fastest woman alive, running 10.54s in the 100m. 

Fast forward to 2024, Thompson-Herah continues to suffer from a longstanding injury to her Achilles tendon and finished last in her 100m season opener last month. Despite her recent challenges, the sprinter remains intent on attending the Paris Summer Olympics in France.

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While questions have been raised regarding Thompson-Herah’s form for the upcoming Games, in the past, the athlete was also coming off of poor seasons caused by the Achilles injury and still managed to retain her titles to claim her sprint double, hence there is no telling what Elaine may do on the big stage.

The 31-year-old’s list of accolades goes beyond the Olympics, with the sprinter also acquiring medals at the Commonwealth Games and the World Athletics Relays, among others.

View Thompson-Herah’s list of achievements in the table below.

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