11 Facts to Know About Jamaican Track & Field Star, Merlene Joyce Ottey

Merlene Joyce Ottey is a Jamaican-born Slovenian track athlete. Ottey began her career representing Jamaica and has also represented Slovenia.

Read on to learn more about outstanding athlete Ottey:

1.Ottey was born on May 10, 1960 to Hubert and Joan Ottey in Cold Spring, Hanover, Jamaica.
2. During the 1970s, she attended Gurneys Mount and Pondside Schools before graduating from Ruseas and Vere Technical high schools. There she frequently competed barefoot in local races.
3. Introduced to the sport of track and field by her mother, who purchased her a manual on the game.
4. In the 1980 Moscow games, Ottey became the first female English-speaking Caribbean athlete to win an Olympic medal.
5. She was awarded an Officer of the Order of Nation in Jamaica, and the Order of Distinction for ‘services in the field of sport.
6. Ottey is ranked fourth on the all-time list over 60 meters (indoor), sixth on the all-time list over 100 meters and third on the all-time list over 200 meters.
7. Throughout Ottey’s career, she has won nine Olympic medals, which ties with Allyson Felix for the most by any woman in track and field history.
8. In 1999, during a meet in Lucerne, Switzerland, a urine sample submitted returned positive for the banned anabolic steroid nandrolone. Her ‘B’ sample also contained higher than normal levels of the substance.
9. Ottey was subsequently banned by the IAAF from competing in the World Championships in Seville, Spain.
10. Her seven Olympic appearances from 1980 to 2004 are the most by any Track & Field athlete.
11. Her world indoor record for 200 meters was set in 1993, and it still stands as of 2017.





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