Merlene, Merlene, Merlene, Merleeeene (Ottey)

Merlene Ottey was an international sprinter.

Merlene Ottey excelled at 60m, 100m, 200m and as a key part of the 4x100m relay.

Merlene Ottey represented Jamaica and, latterly, Slovenia.

Merlene Ottey was INCREDIBLE

Merlene Ottey

* * * * *

🥉She won her first global medal  in 1980, winning Bronze in the 200m at the Moscow Olympics.
(She was 20.)

🥉She won her last global medal in 2003, winning Bronze in the 60m at the World Indoor Championships in Birmingham.
(She was 43.)

👟She concluded her career anchoring Slovenia’s 4x100m to 6th in their heat (of 8)  at the 2012 European Championships.
(She was 52.)

🎽She competed in seven Olympic Games (Moscow, LA, Seoul, Barcelona, Atlanta, Sydney, Athens), more than any other track and field athlete.

🏆She’s the oldest female athletics individual medallist in the history of both the Olympics and the World Championships. She won Olympic Bronze in 2000 at the age of 40.

🇯🇲She’s been around long enough that she was the FIRST FEMALE CARIBBEAN ATHLETE TO WIN AN OLYMPIC MEDAL. She was still winning medals in 2000, an age of island dominance in the sprints. Quite remarkable.

But she didn’t just have insane longevity. She had real class too…

Ottey won medals at six of the seven Olympics she competed at. She came 4th in the 200m in Seoul, her only blot. She was a gnat’s eyelid from appearing in Beijing in 2008, but just missed out. For comparison, you have to be over 30 year olds to realistically remember seven Olympic Games. Plenty of athletes have retired around that age. 😲

  • She’s 4th on the all time 200m list
  • She’s 7th on the all time 100m list
  • She still holds the 200m indoor WR.
  • She ran under 11 seconds for 100m 67 times
  • She won over 20 medals at WCs and Olympics, a record shared only by Carl Lewis, Usain Bolt and Allyson Felix
  • She won 3o medals, in total, at Worlds, Olympics and World Indoors including 6 golds 🏅🏅🏅🏅🏅🏅

Merlene, Merlene, Merlene, Merleeeene… winning medals just because she can.