|Fraser looking to make his mark in the 100m|
Guardian Sports Editor
Published: Jul 30, 2012
LONDON, England – The Bahamas hasn’t had two male sprinters qualify for the Olympic Games ‘A’ standard in quite a while, but national record holder Derrick Atkins got through with a 10.09 clocking earlier this year and Warren Fraser made sure he wasn’t left out.
About three weeks before the BTC/Scotiabank Olympic Trials, Fraser ran 10.18 seconds at the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Championships, matching the ‘A’ standard and ensuring that he would be on The Bahamas’ Olympic team heading to London.
With that timely run, Fraser not only qualified for the 30th Olympic Games, but he also tied Rudy Levarity, Renward Wells and Andrew Tynes as the second fastest Bahamians ever behind Atkins. Fraser is looking to run even faster here in London, England in his first Olympic Games.
“It’s great,” said Fraser in an interview about the time he’s having thus far.
“I’m very excited to run. This is a whole new level of competition so I just have to be ready to run. I started off kind of late this year, but I noticed myself getting faster coming down to the end of the season. I just was glad I qualified ‘A’ standard. I was very pleased with my performance, and hopefully I can improve on that here in London.”
Despite coming into the Olympic Trials with the second fastest time among Bahamians, Fraser settled for third in a subpar 10.61 seconds, but that was done into a strong headwind.
Nevertheless, he said he is in top form here in London. He knows that he will have to set a new personal best in order to move through the rounds.
“It’s going to be extremely tough to make it through,” said Fraser.
“I know this is my first Olympics, but I’m going all out. I think you have to, in order to make it through the rounds. There are a lot of good sprinters out there but I’m just going to focus on what I need to do, and hopefully, I can make it through. If I can run a personal best each round, I think I will be fine.”
Fraser was part of the men’s sprint relay pool that had a realistic shot of qualifying for the Olympics this year. Unfortunately, those hopes and aspirations died as the team struggled to get the right mix together.
Even when it seemed like they had four capable sprinters, an unfortunate injury or an untimely mishap prevented them from running a time fast enough to qualify for the Olympics.
In the 4x100-meter (m) heats at the Thomas A. Robinson Track Classic, in June, National Junior Collegiate Athletic Association (NJCAA) double sprint champion Shavez Hart pulled up with an apparent hamstring injury. In the final, with Johnathan Farquharson running for Hart, lead-off leg Fraser got tangled up with the runner in his lane on the first exchange, and The Bahamas’ ‘A’ team never finished the race.
The Bahamas had one final chance of qualifying, as the team of Fraser, Trevorvano Mackey, Jamial Rolle and Marcus Thompson, took part in a last chance qualifier in Jamaica. The time they posted wasn’t nearly fast enough for them to qualify for the Olympics, however.
“I think the main issue was trying to get everyone together because a lot of the runners were in school so the chemistry was missing,” said Fraser.
“Also, people had injuries and weren’t peaking at the right time.”
Fraser said that he would have loved the team to qualify but it just wasn’t meant to be. As for the 100m, he’s extremely optimistic about his chances of moving through the rounds.
The heats of the 100m will be held on Saturday, August 4, and the semi-finals and final on Sunday, August 5.