Five-time world champion Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce stormed back to “remarkable” winning ways when she triumphed in the 100m at the Diamond League final in Zurich on Thursday.
Fraser-Pryce, 35, clocked a meet record-equalising 10.65 seconds for the victory at a sell-out Letzigrund Stadium, just 0.03sec off her personal best.
Jamaican teammate Shericka Jackson came in second in 10.81sec, with Ivory Coast’s Marie-Josee Ta Lou rounding out the podium (10.91).
“I am just excited to be here and to have won,” said Fraser-Pryce.
“This was remarkable, and I am very proud that I came away with a 10.65 – I started with a 10.6 and I finish with a 10.6 so there is nothing more I could ask for.”
Fraser-Pryce had pulled out of the Lausanne meet with hamstring contractions before rebounding in Brussels last week, where she was beaten into second by Jackson.
Thoughts automatically turned to returning home to Jamaica after a testing season in which the two-time Olympic gold medallist has run sub-10.0sec seven times on top of winning world 100m gold and 200m silver titles in Oregon in July.
But Fraser-Pryce re-arranged her flights after being notified by her five-year-old son Zyon’s primary school that the start date for the new term had been pushed back.
That choice paid off in front of 25,000 baying spectators at the Letzigrund, a knowledgeable crowd whose impeccable pre-start silence could not help Natasha Morrison from false starting.
“When I came out here and saw the crowd, I said to myself ‘Oh my God, there is a lot of people!’, but you know, that is what track and field is all about,” said Fraser-Pryce.
“We want to have full stadiums and sold out crowds. We definitely want to feel that energy as it really helps us athletes.
“We don’t want to be in a dead stadium where nobody understands what is going on. To be able to see the excitement and to hear the silence is beautiful. I am glad they were able to see good times.”
Known for her eclectic style that included different brightly-coloured hair extentions in each round at the Eugene worlds, Fraser-Pryce joked that she might be after a Swiss residency visa.
“I got my hair done in Zurich. I just found a stylist, and needed to get my braids done. I hope you guys can offer me some residency here!” she said.
“I am really looking forward to my next season, and I would love to come here again.”