Filipino-American Kristina Knott gets on the Tokyo Olympic Stadium track on Monday morning to compete in the women’s 200 meters heats of athletics.
Knott will be running in Heat 7, the final heat, set for 10:18 a.m. (Manila time) hoping to break 23 seconds.
Her personal best is 23.01 seconds, a Philippine national record.
“My goal is to go sub-23 (seconds),” Knott told the Tokyo Olympics official website days before the pandemic-hit Games opened on July 23.
There are seven heats for the event and Knott knows all those times of training are thrown out the window come the start gun.
“It’s championship time. And anything to do with tapering should have been done weeks before,” said Knott.
She prepared for Tokyo under her coach Rohsaan Griffin and strength and conditioning coach Carlo Buzzichelli.
“At this point, you should have given everything you and everything you worked, and it will hopefully show at the competition,” Knott added.
Knott has a personal best 23.01 seconds, the Philippine national record. But in Tokyo, she has to exert more effort.
The 200-meters field parades many of the world’s best, including the US’s Gabrielle Thomas, who owns a 21.61-second mark in the race. Also in the mix are the Bahamas’s Shaunae Miller-Uibo (21.47) and Jamaica’s Elaine Thompson Herah (21.66).
In Knott’s heat, five of her rivals have sub-23 times.
“Tapering time is now over. It’s now time to show off and show out,” said the Orlando, Florida, native Knott, whose Olympic stint was threatened when she contracted Covid-19 in Sweden in June despite having been vaccinated twice.