Sprint star Jeriel Quainoo targeting place in British sporting history

After a hugely successful 2022 season, Quainoo is looking to make a significant impact in the sprinting world

Sprint star Jeriel Quainoo targeting place in British sporting history

By Oli Dickson Jefford, Sportsbeat

Sprint sensation Jeriel Quainoo wants to cement a place among the very best of Britain.

The 19-year-old has long stood out as a junior, and in 2022 won double gold at the Junior British Championships and also claimed 200m bronze in the senior event.

As a teenager Quainoo, who grew up in Ladbroke Grove, spent time training at the Linford Christie Stadium, named after the man who hailed from that track to become Olympic and world champion.

Quianoo does not set specific medals or placing targets, but following a season where he also competed at the World Athletics U20 Championships, optimism of becoming a sprint giant himself is significant.

“I’m someone who doesn’t like to say ‘I want to do this, I want to do that’ because once I do that I’m capping myself mentally and also I’m not finding or being true to myself,” said Quainoo, who is funded by a partnership between SportsAid and MBC.

“I can see myself as being one of the greatest athletes coming out of Britain, and just continue to make my mark and continue to grow.

“Anyone can do anything, so I feel like being able to continue what I’m doing, having a good training environment, just stay fit and healthy - once I’ve got all those things I feel like it will map out itself.

“I definitely feel like I can be one of the greatest sprinters from Britain, but in terms of what I want to run, what I want to do, it’s just something that we’ll never know. I definitely want to be one of the greatest to come out of the country.”

SportsAid Week 2023 is here, with the annual initiative, which was launched in 2016, taking place from Monday 6 March to Sunday 12 March.

This year’s theme focuses on ‘Accessibility and Inclusion’ as the charity shines a spotlight on the country’s most talented young athletes and celebrates the incredible work being undertaken by its partners to support the future of British sport.

Quainoo’s experience at the U20 Championships in Cali proved an eye-opening experience, who finished seventh in the 200m final with a time of 20.73s.

In a race that saw gold medallist Blessing Afrifah and silver medallist Letsile Tebogo both break the magic 20 second barrier in the fastest race in event history, Quainoo is more aware than ever about the hard graft required.

“Coming seventh in the world isn’t terrible, but when you’re lined up against athletes who created one of the fastest U20 races in history, it really goes to show that if you want to be among the best there’s a lot of work to be done. It was more or less like a wake-up call to me,” added Quainoo, who is supported by SportsAid and commercial partner MBC.

“That experience was really good, being out with the best in the world - I haven’t been at a meet of that calibre. Being there, racing against the best in the world and racing in that professional environment, you always want to look forward to these moments and you never realise these moments will come so fast.

“I really enjoyed the experience and it was something that I definitely needed, to know where I was in relation to the world.”

SportsAid Week 2023 takes place from Monday 6 March to Sunday 12 March! Join us for a dedicated week of fun and awareness-raising based around theme of accessibility and inclusion. Please visit www.sportsaid.org.uk