U.S. 200 Metres Champion Abby Steiner Inspired by Jamaican Rivals

American 200 metres contender Abby Steiner said she was prepared to produce a personal best to fend off a Jamaican triple threat at the World Championships which start on Friday.The 22-year-old collegiate champion makes her world debut having already put the sport on notice, briefly claiming the world leading time of 21.77 seconds to stun more experienced competitors at the national championships last month.

Jamaican Shericka Jackson beat her time later on that June 26 day (21.55), ending Steiner’s short time at the top and lighting a fire under the collegiate record holder.”It was like 20 minutes, maybe,” she told Reuters with a laugh, after Puma announced her as its latest marquee talent to sign with the brand.

“Going into these championships, having someone who has the world lead that I can compete with … it just gives me great opportunities to hopefully get a personal best for myself coming out of these championships.”She will need everything in her arsenal against Jackson and her compatriots, Elaine Thompson-Herah, who collected gold in the 100 and 200 metres in Tokyo, and 2019 world 100 metres champion Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce.

“The Jamaican ladies – all three of them, really – they always show up at championships and they’re always ready to go,” said Steiner.”I’m looking forward to being able to compete with them and seeing what I can do against great competition like that.”

Steiner hopes to emulate the soon-to-be-retired Allyson Felix in her career, admiring the most decorated American track athlete not just for her accolades but for her advocacy for pregnant people and working mothers.

“She’s leaving the sport, making it a better, safer place for women and I think that’s really what it’s about, leaving an impact like that after they leave the sport,” said Steiner.

The World Athletics Championships run from July 15-24.

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