Jackson may focus on one event in 2024
Jamaica's Shericka Jackson celebrates as she crosses the finish line in the Women's 200m final during the Diamond League athletics meeting at Stadion Letzigrund stadium in Zurich on Thursday, August 31. (Photo: AFP)

MVP Track Club head coach Stephen Francis has admitted disappointment that his athlete Shericka Jackson did not break the women's 200m world record at the Eugene leg of the Diamond League last weekend. This, he says, is making him reconsider how she approaches next season.

Jackson, the reigning 200m world champion and second-fastest woman of all time in the event, clocked 21.57 seconds (0.3m/s) to win the 200m on Sunday at Hayward Field.

A day after running 10.70s to win the 100m, Jackson was not challenged as she broke the meet record of 21.77s set in 2017 by the late Tori Bowie.

Jackson ran a world-leading 21.41s to win the gold medal at the World Athletics Championships in Budapest, Hungary last month. The world record time of 21.34s was set by the American Florence Griffith-Joyner in 1988.

FRANCIS...nobody is ever perfect, but it was not disappointing for the most part

Francis told the Jamaica Observer that the track in Eugene, Oregon is well known to produce fast times, and he was shocked she was unable to break the world record there.

Francis says he did not think Jackson's participation in the 100m would have affected her run in the 200m the following day.

"Based on the history, we felt that the best opportunity would have been the meet in Eugene," he said. "I didn't believe that running the 100 metres would have affected her as much as it did, but that is part of lifeso we just have to try again, whenever.

"It probably might be that we will have to seriously consider her not doubling up at these kinds of events if she is going to get a real shot at that record when she is in form."

Francis shared that wind conditions have not been kind to Jackson throughout the season in her attempts to break the world 200m record, and there is a possibility that next season she might compete at different parts of the globe where the tracks and wind would be perfect for her to accomplish this feat.

"I think once she is in form she should be able to, but there has not been much help for her in terms of wind assistance and so on," he said. "We probably might have to go to Mexico or Kenya or one of those places, and who knows? But it is a bit too early to say right now."

Jackson, who also won a silver medal in the women's 100m in Budapest, is the joint fastest female athlete this year in the event with a time of 10.65.

Francis says Jackson could have done better throughout the season if not for a number of mistakes she had made during the campaign.

"Nobody is ever perfect but it was not disappointing, for the most part," he said. "There are times when you felt that she made some mistakes, but overall it was okay," he said.

Robert Bailey

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