Fraser expects great results in 100
Posted by Dresonic on August 13, 2008
New Jamaican sprint sensation, Shelly-Ann Fraser introduced herself to the world at June’s National Track & Field Championship with a magnificent 10.85-second clocking to finish second in the 100m and book her ticket to the 29th Olympiad in China.
And like her MVP teammate Asafa Powell, Fraser says sprinting runs in her family.
“My mother (Maxine Simpson) is probably one of the biggest reasons why I’m running because she used to run and she stopped because she got pregnant with my big brother (24-year-old Omar). She also has a 20-year-old brother – Andrew.
“My mother encourages me
a lot and I really love her because when nobody else was there, she always made sure to provide for us (by peddling goods),” she related.
The Stephen Francis-coached Fraser surprised most people at the National Stadium, including reigning World Championships 100m gold medallist Veronica Campbell-Brown, who crossed the finish line fourth in 10.88secs.
“I’ve worked really hard for this, so it’s an honour to go under 11 (seconds),” an overwhelmed Fraser told the Observer at the time.In fact, Fraser’s 10.85secs clocking made her the joint fifth fastest Jamaican woman, along with Campbell-Brown, behind Merlene Ottey (10.74), Kerron Stewart (10.80), Sherone Simpson (10.82) and Juliet Cutbert (10.83).
But just who is Shelly-Ann Fraser?
“I’m very shy,” she told the Observer with a smile so bright that it lit up the lobby of the Huibin Yuan Hotel located in the Tianjin Province in China on the penultimate day of Jamaica’s mandatory 11-day track & field camp.
“I’m humble that I really put in a lot of hard work to get to where I am now,” the 21-year-old said, noting that she’s “laid back and wants to achieve as much as possible”.
Fraser disclosed that she grew up under less than desirable circumstances in a close-knit family.
“I was born in Kingston and grew up in a tenement yard in Waterhouse and went to George Headley Primary School on Baldwin Crescent in Duhaney Park,” Fraser disclosed, adding that she first dabbled in track & field while attending George Headley.
“I ran at Primary Champs bare-footed and my last year is actually when I won my first medal, coming second in the 100m and then I went to Wolmer’s Girls’ School,” she said.
“Wolmer’s was like the (first) milestone, honestly, because that’s what created who I am now,” she reasoned, making special mention of her high school coach Michael Carr.Fraser won her first international medal at the 2005 Carifta Games in Trinidad & Tobago, clocking 11.73secs to take bronze in the 100m behind winner Kelly-Ann Baptiste.
Incidentally, Fraser should come up against Baptiste, the 2008 NCAA champion, here in Beijing. She will also come face-to-face with the American trio of Torri Edwards, Muna Lee and reigning world silver medallist, Lauryn Williams.
Despite the nervousness of competing in her first Olympics, Fraser, who won a silver medal in the 4×100 relay as an alternative who ran in the heats, is ready to deliver on the big stage.
“I just want to go out there and do my best and I’m anticipating great results, so for me it’s just great, honestly, to be here (in Beijing),” said Fraser. The diminutive sprinter, along with Jamaica’s other 51 track and field athletes, arrived in Beijing at 4:00 pm yesterday after a three-hour bus drive from Tianjin.
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