TOKYO—Kristina Knott gets the chance to “show off and show out” in her Olympic debut when she competes in the women’s 200 meters heats of athletics on Monday morning at the Tokyo Olympic Stadium.
Knott has set her goal in the Tokyo Olympics to a modest level as she vies with the world’s best in the event that ranks second to the centerpiece century dash.
“My goal is to go sub-23 (seconds),” Knott told the Tokyo Olympics official website days before the pandemic Games opened on July 23.
But for these Games, she has to go the extra mile.
There are seven heats for the event with Knott running in Heat 7 set for 10:18 a.m. (Manila time).
“It’s championship time. And anything to do with tapering should have been done weeks before,” said Knott, who prepared for Tokyo under her coach Rohsaan Griffin and strength and conditioning coach Carlo Buzzichelli.
“At this point, you should have given 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 200m 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.