Elaine Thompson-Herah
Source: INA FASSBENDER/AFP via Getty Images

Record-Breaker: Elaine Thompson-Herah's 2023 Milestones


Dec. 7 2023, Published 3:28 p.m. ET

Dubbed the fastest woman alive, Elaine Thompson-Herah is a five-time Olympic gold medalist with a long list of athletic achievements under her belt. The Jamaican sprinter is the second woman to win the Olympic double of 100m and 200m races. More importantly, she is the only female athlete to ever successfully defend an Olympic double.

While the 35-year-old fastest time record set by Florence Griffith-Joyner has proved elusive, the Jamaican sprinting powerhouse is still one of the most accomplished female athletes ever to walk the planet.

Read on for a list of Thompson-Herah’s milestones to date.

Double-Double Champion

Thompson-Herah’s repeat double-double win at the 2020 Tokyo games is the first in women’s athletics. The Jamaican sprinter first won the 100m and 200m Olympic gold medals at the 2016 games in Rio. This was the first time a female achieved this feat after Florence Griffith-Joyner’s success at the 1988 games.

However, to take things to the next level, Thompson-Herah repeated the feat at the 2020 games, which were delayed to 2021 due to the coronavirus. As a bonus, she also won the 4X100 relay gold with her Jamaican teammates during the Tokyo games.

In addition to winning the 100m race, Thompson-Herah also shattered the previous Olympic record of 10.62 – set by American sprinter Griffith-Joyner back in the 1988 games – clocking in at 10.61 seconds. Realizing how fast she was, she even started pointing at the time board before finishing the race! Perhaps if she did not do so she might have come closer to the world record set by Griffith-Joyner in 1988 as well.

While she did not win the 100m or 200m races at the World Athletics championships in 2022 – missing out to compatriots Fraser-Pryce and Shericka Jackson – she bounced back and did it during the Commonwealth Games.

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The Fastest Woman Alive

Elaine Thompson-Herah holds the world record for the fastest woman alive. The Jamaican sprinter set the second fastest time ever run by a female athlete at the Diamond League meet in Eugene, Oregon – breaking the record she set at the Tokyo Olympics for the 100m race.

Her 10.54 time was just a few seconds shy of the all-time 35-year record set by Griffith-Joyner, back in 1988. Talking to BBC, she expressed her disbelief at the time she had achieved saying, “When I look at the race I was like, hell no, that probably must be the wrong time.”

Eying the World Record

After a tumultuous 2023 season, Thompson-Herah will be looking to the future for inspiration. She has a huge mountain to climb with her eyes set on breaking the 10.49 seconds record set in 1988. The sprinter also has her heart set on pursuing an individual title. While Thompson-Herah was able to turn things around at the end of the season, she will look to the upcoming Paris Olympics in 2024 and the 2025 World Athletics Championships to be held in Tokyo for the chance to beat the world record and establish herself as the greatest female athlete in history.

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