‘European title a step in the right direction for Olympics’


Agency :
Britain’s two-time Olympic bronze medallist Dina Asher-Smith said winning 100m gold at the European Athletics Championships in Rome on June 9 was a step in the right direction towards the Paris Games.

Asher-Smith, who had not won a major title since taking 200m gold at the 2019 world championships, got off to a slow start before surging past her rivals to win in 10.99 seconds. Poland’s Ewa Swoboda claimed silver in 11.03sec in a photo finish with Italian Zaynab Dosso.

“I can definitely run faster than that. It’s just a step towards Paris, a step in the right direction,” she told British media.

“I’m in a great place. That’s not normally my style of race but I’m happy I was able to run another sub-11 perform ance in a different way.”

The 28-year-old, who won bronze in the women’s 4x100m relay in Rio de Janeiro and Tokyo, split with coach John Blackie in October 2023 after 19 years together and moved to Texas to prepare for Paris under the guidance of Edrick Floreal.

“We’ve worked really hard on my top-end speed, on my form and relaxation. I didn’t panic in my running,” said Asher-Smith.


Things are looking less promising for one of the Briton’s Paris rivals.

Jamaican five-gold Olympic champion Elaine Thompson-Herah appeared to sustain an injury during the 100m at the NYC Grand Prix on June 9, less than 50 days before the Paris Games.

The two-time defending Olympic champion in the 100m and 200m removed her right shoe and sat down on the track after finishing last in 11.48sec, though the nature of her injury was not immediately clear.

Images posted on social media showed Thompson-Herah being carried from the track.

“I felt something uncomfortable as I began to push I still tried to go but it got worse,” the 31-year-old wrote on Instagram about an hour after the race. “I am awaiting professional advice moving forward.”