After testing positive for a banned substance ahead of the Tokyo Olympics, Sha’Carri Richardson was given a one-month suspension. She was formerly the third-fastest woman in history.
Her time of 10.64 in the semifinals of the US Olympic Trials 2021 has put her in contention for gold in the Tokyo Olympics. With Richardson out of the Olympics, the spotlight will be on Jamaica, who are expected to win all three medals.
Sha’Carri Richardson had failed the drug test following her Tokyo Olympic qualifying 100m race victory on June 19. The American sprinter tested positive for marijuana.
The occurrence was described as “unfortunate” by the US Anti-Doping Agency in a statement. Sha’Carri Richardson’s performance at Hayward Field, Oregon, was likewise ruled invalid.
“All of Richardson’s competition results from June 19, 2021, including her Olympic qualifying results at the Team Trials, have been annulled, and she forfeits any medals, points, or rewards,” the USADA stated in a statement.
The dynamics of the race have changed as a result of Sha’Carri Richardson’s withdrawal from the Tokyo Olympics. Jamaica has been tipped to win the 100m women’s event in Tokyo.
Why is Jamaica the favorite for Top 3 finish at Tokyo Olympics?
When Shelly Ann-Fraser-Pryce of Jamaica finished third at the Rio Olympics, losing her title to Elaine Thompson, it was believed that the mantle had passed. But the two-time Olympic champion came back stronger and faster post-partum.
She clocked 10.63 on June 5, to become the fastest woman on the planet and second fastest behind legendary Florence Griffith Joyner.
Incidentally, both Fraser and Thompson will be competing for the women’s 100m title at the Tokyo Olympics. Sha’Carri Richardson was amongst the medal contenders and a serious challenge to Fraser, the Queen.
As per the fastest timings this year, Jamaica has three sprinters, all Tokyo Olympics-bound, in the top 5.
Fraser leads the table, while Shericka Jackson is third with a 10.77 she clocked on June 25. Current Olympic champion Thompson is placed fourth with a 10.78 on the clock.
The three Jamaican sprinters will start as the favorites to finish in the top three, with Fraser eyeing Griffith’s 10.49s world record.
Interestingly, Jamaica has always been amongst the favorites for a podium finish at the Tokyo Olympics.
Why does Jamaica produces so many champion sprinters?
Simply put it’s the yams!
According to some research, Jamaica’s staple crops – the green banana and yam – are said to be partially responsible for the country dominating the sprint events.
Of course, there is more to it than just yams. There are other theories that explain Jamaican sprinters have high amount of testosterone, while some suggest the body shape of the athletes as the reason.
Yohan Blake, a silver medallist in the 2012 London Olympics, offered a simple response. The hardship during his early years, he claims, is the driving factor. He stated, “
“I believe it was the way I was raised that influenced me” (helped me become successful). We were in dire straits. We had no choice but to work our way out of poverty. It wasn’t going to happen through education. It was only a game. As a result, it was only natural.”
Whatever the case may be, Jamaica is expected to dominate the sprint event in the Tokyo Olympics, which will begin on July 23.