Strachan finds new lease on track life
STRACHAN...I have stopped judging myself so hard and stopped piling on so many things and taking it one stride at a time Photo: Dwayne Richards

Anthonique Strachan, of whom so much was expected based on her performances for The Bahamas at the youth level, has seemingly found a new lease on life and is expecting big things this year and way into the future.

She ran a season’s best 22.55 seconds, not far off her personal best of 22.32s to win the women’s 200m at the Velocity Fest Meet last weekend in Kingston as she finished ahead of Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce, who eased down significantly in the last 20 metres of the race.

Strachan, who trains at the MVP Track Club, has had a start to the season that she has not experienced in a decade.

“So far, the season has been going really well. I can’t really complain about anything. I opened up with a personal best in the 100m after 10 years and I ran basically the same time that I left off with last season, 22.5 seconds here, I can’t really complain. It’s awesome,” she said.

The Bahamian Olympian says that running against Jamaica’s best female sprinters is a joy for her.

“I am always excited to run with people like Shelly-Ann, Elaine [Thompson-Herah], Shericka [Jackson], and the elites from Jamaica and the world. To finally be back in a more comfortable range of running and competition is awesome for me right now.”

“It’s helping me with my confidence and my mental standpoint for track and field and my performance, so I am just trying to stay there and stay positive,” she said.

The 28-year-old acknowledged that it has been a struggle for her mentally over the last 10 years, during which time she has questioned herself while dealing with cyberbullying.

“It’s actually very tough because you start to ridicule and judge yourself and then you go on social media and you also see people ridiculing and judging you. I haven’t run a personal best in 10 years, so I have seen people telling me that I need to go hang it up, go get a 9-5 [job]…but nobody actually knows what’s happening when the lights are off. So I try not to take it to heart, but it’s sort of difficult to judge yourself and also have people out there judging you,” she explained.

Strachan said that dealing with recurring injuries reduced her ability to trust people, but she has had a change of heart, which has actually led to her resurgence this year.

“Because I had so many injuries it was sort of difficult for me to trust coaching and other people, and also trust myself. My coach told me that I need to let somebody in to actually help me, to help myself and that’s what I have been trying to do this year.

“I have stopped judging myself so hard and stopped piling on so many things, and taking it one stride at a time,” she said.

Strachan is hoping that the 2022 season will see her reach the heights that many had predicted for her after her exploits at the Carifta Games as a youth.

BY DWAYNE RICHARDS Observer writer

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