Richardson claims gold for US in 100m at World Athletics Championships
Favourites Shericka Jackson and Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce from Jamaica take silver and bronze at the event in Budapest.
Sha’Carri Richardson said starting in an outside lane helped her focus on her own race as she won the women’s 100-metre final during the World Athletics Championships in Budapest, Hungary [Martin Meissner/AP]Published On 22 Aug 202322 Aug 2023
Sha’Carri Richardson of the United States stunned Jamaica’s pre-race favourites from the outside lane to win the 100 metres world title at the World Athletics Championships in Budapest.
Richardson crushed Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce’s hopes of a sixth women’s world 100m title when she stormed to victory in a championship record time of 10.65 seconds despite starting in lane nine at the finals on Monday.
It sealed a 100m double for the US after Noah Lyles’ victory in the men’s event.
Jamaican teammates Shericka Jackson and veteran Fraser-Pryce took silver and bronze in 10.72sec and 10.77sec respectively on the third day of action in the Hungarian capital.
It was a remarkable run for the 23-year-old Richardson, who was barred from the pandemic-delayed Tokyo Olympics in 2021 after testing positive for marijuana.
She then saw her hopes of challenging for a medal at last year’s world championships in Eugene, Oregon, go up in smoke when she failed to qualify in the US trials.
“I’m here. I’m the champion. I told you all. I’m not back, I’m better!” said Richardson, whose penchant for regular hair colour changes and brightly painted nails has earned inevitable comparisons to the late Florence Griffith Joyner.
Fraser-Pryce, the reigning champion, said she was “really grateful” for a bronze medal after a difficult season that was hampered by a knee injury.
‘Perfect’ in lane nine
Hugely popular on social media, and always an outspoken and colourfully attired competitor, she was in good form despite Jackson, who won world silver in Eugene last year, having the fastest time of 10.65 coming into Budapest.
However, Richardson’s global championship struggles looked to be continuing when she was left in the blocks in the semifinals earlier on Monday and the American had to dig desperately deep to finish third and scrape into the final as a fast loser.
That came with the consequence that she was given lane nine – never popular with sprinters – but she had a far better start in the final and maintained her focus away from the traffic.
“I was by myself in my own world, which honestly has been like that all my life,” she told reporters after the race.
“I’ve always been in my own world, my own element, so being in lane nine was perfect for me to do what it is I know to do and to focus in more on myself. And when I celebrated, it was because I felt like I did my best no matter what the result was going to be.”
‘Three in a row’
In a good night on the track for the US, Grant Holloway became the second athlete after compatriot Greg Foster to claim three consecutive world 110m hurdles titles.
Holloway, 25, shot out to a season’s best of 12.96sec to win gold ahead of Jamaica’s Olympic champion Hansle Parchment, who finished in 13.07sec.
“Three in a row!” said Holloway. “The main thing was really just to come through here and defend my title.
“I felt no pressure at all, I just wanted to run cleanly and stay calm at the finish line.”
The two field event medals on offer went to Sweden and, in an historic first, Burkina Faso.
Olympic champion Daniel Stahl left it late to win a second world discus title that had the crowd gripped.
The Swede, who previously triumphed in Doha in 2019, had control of the leaderboard only for defending champion Kristjan Ceh of Slovenia to grab the lead with his sixth and final throw.
All eyes turned to Stahl for the final throw of the competition and the Swede did not disappoint, throwing a championship record of 71.46m.
“This was my best performance ever,” said Stahl. I had so much focus, I would say 1,000 percent on the last throw after I saw Kristjan.”
First athletics gold for Burkina Faso
In the triple jump, Hugues Fabrice Zango gave the West African nation of Burkina Faso its first global athletics title when he won with a mark of 17.64m.
Cubans Lazaro Martinez and Cristian Napoles won silver and bronze.
“The competition was easy for me,” said Zango, who won world silver last year and also claimed his country’s first-ever Olympic medal with a bronze in Tokyo in 2021.
Zango’s path to glory was made easier by the first-round withdrawal through injury of much-vaunted 18-year-old Jamaican Jaydon Hibbert.