The fastest woman alive Elaine Thompson-Herah has reportedly sent a letter to the MVP Track Club and her main sponsor Nike, indicating her departure.
According to a report by Nationwide Radio earlier today, Thompson-Herah is set to sign with Puma, one of Nike’s biggest rivals, in a “mega” deal. Thompson-Herah had signed a professional contract with Nike in 2016, according to the Observer.
As the story developed, Andre Lowe, Sports Editor at the Jamaica Gleaner, tweeted that “Derron Herah, the husband of Elaine Thompson Herah, is expected to take over coaching duties for the two-time double Olympic sprint champion after her intended split from MVP. Derron is the male sprint coach at St Jago high and was a member of the Cameron Blazers setup.”
Lowe also tweeted a response from her current coach, Stephen Francis. “I would not be surprised if she is not here, I don’t know if she is going to be here. As they move along, many other things become important apart from their training & their status,” Francis is quoted as saying.
Thompson-Herah led the photo finish 1,2,3 performance at the Tokyo Olympic Games earlier year, becoming the first woman to defend back-to-back Olympic titles.
The Jamaican sprinter then recorded the second-fastest time ever at the Eugene Diamond League in Oregon. However, after the Oregon meet, Jamaicans expressed their displeasure online about Nike’s perceived lukewarm support of Thompson-Herah.
The American sportswear giant had only posted a congrats for Elaine on their “Nike Running” page, which has 5.7M followers, and not their main @Nike page. At the time, the page, which has 169M followers, had only featured an ad with American sprinter Sha’Carri Richardson, who placed 9th at the Diamond League.
Nike announced, today, that they’ve got a new partnership with Hot Girl rapper Megan Thee Stallion, according to TheFader.
Meanwhile, upon her return to Jamaica on Wednesday, September 15, Thompson-Herah was greeted by the Minister Of Gender, Entertainment And Sports, Olivia “Babsy” Grange and presented with a diplomatic passport by the Government Of Jamaica.
“We would not be able to do the usual big splash that we want to but we will still have an event that will say to Jamaica and the world and to them(athletes) that we appreciate them and we love them,” Grange said.
“It was our honor to bestow upon you the order of distinction in the commander class, it was our honor to ensure that you now carry a diplomatic, red passport and whoever you go in the world you will be treated appropriately”.
Thompson-Herah was seemingly pleased as the Minister went on the address the significance of her achievement for girls in Jamaica.
“What is so wonderful about your achievement is from your humble beginnings you are made of great stuff, the journey has just begun,” she predicted.
In response to the gifts and praise, Elaine said, “this job that we put ourself in, we have never seen out body push to a limit where we haven’t seen it before…but I know I worked hard..I accept all my losses and I do not dwell on them I just move on”.
“No athlete goes to a championship to lose or to come last,” she quipped.
The event would not be concluded before the Minister ordered congratulations to her coaching team. “..MVP you continue to show that you do great work and you have certainly put our athletes at the center of brand Jamaica”.