High jumper Sakari Famous revels in record-breaking exploits
Sakari Famous met her expectations on the way to victory in the women’s high jump competing for McNeese State University at the LSU Battle on the Bayou in Baton Rouge, Louisiana.
The 22-year-old Bermudian claimed the top spot on the podium with a leap of 1.81 metres, a school and Bermuda outdoor record, at the Bernie Moore Track Stadium last weekend.
Famous’s effort is the fifth-best jump in Southland Conference history, eclipsing the previous mark of 1.797 metres set in 2007.
“I definitely went in with the mindset of jumping 1.81 that meet,” she told The Royal Gazette. “I saw what the progression was and was like ‘I think it’s time to get up there.
“It was definitely hot and lot of people. There was also a girl there that I jumped with before who beat me, so that just added more competition to where I needed to perform really good.”
The former Carifta Games medal-winner was among a trio of the competitors that attempted the height, which she cleared on her final effort.
“I got it on my last attempt and there was two girls who were also jumping the same height with me,” Famous added. “They were in front of me, so I was the last one to attempt it overall.
“Nobody made that height, which gave me more motivation to actually jump this height. Not to only win, but to add both these records to my school and Bermuda.”
Famous held a share of the previous national women’s outdoor record of 1.80 with Zindzi Swan going into the collegiate meet. She also holds the Bermuda indoor record of 1.77, set in 2019.
“It has been a very long time and hard work put into trying to get these records,” she said. “It’s been a lot of ups and downs for sure with the injury [torn ligaments left ankle] in my second year at college and then just not a great third year.
“I think just putting it all together this season, especially in the great atmosphere of a new school, just laid everything in line for me to get to the height.”
While thrilled over latest success, Famous is far from content and is determined to raise the bar even higher.
“It feels like a great accomplishment,” she added. “But for me I feel like the record is not high enough, so I need to make them both higher; indoor next year and of course outdoors this year.
“I am trying to put it a little bit more, so I can’t wait for the rest of the season.”
In recognition of her exploits, Famous was named the Southland Conference Women's Track and Field Athlete of the Week for the first time.
“It feels great to receive this honour,” she said. “I was like ‘finally’ because I felt I also had a good indoor season.
“But it happened, and I am grateful for this opportunity.”