Blessing Okagbare has become the equal fastest woman ever (under any conditions) with a sharp 10.63s victory to win the women’s 100m at the 2021 Nigeria Olympic Trials and Invitational Relays.
The time, however, was aided by a +2.7 tailwind. Although she had not competed at the National Trials since 2016, Okagbare, a seven-time National Champion in the 100m, was the overwhelming favourite to win and she duly delivered a performance for the ages on the tartan track of the Yaba College of Technology (YABATECH) Sports Complex.
Coming through her semis unscathed, she decimated the field as she ran inside 11s (10.99s) for the fourth time this season. The Olympic Silver medallist from Beijing 2008 took that form into the final.
Running in lane 3, Okagbare got off to a great start, and from the 40m mark, she pulled away from the chasing pack to take the win, becoming the first Nigerian and African woma n to run inside 10.70s in the 100m. Rosemary Chukwuma took Silver in 11.07s, while Grace Nwokocha was 3rd in 11.11s.
Regardless of the wind, the run is a threatening reminder to current World leader Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce, who became the second-fastest woman of all time when she clocked 10.63s earlier this month, ahead of the Tokyo Olympics in July.