Richard Thompson (athlete)

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Richard Thompson
Thompson at the 2012 olympic games
Personal information
Nationality Trinidad and Tobago
Born (1985-06-07) 7 June 1985 (age 29)
Height 1.88 m (6 ft 2 in)
Weight 80 kg (180 lb)
Sport Running
Event(s) 100 metres, 200 metres
College team LSU Tigers

Richard "Torpedo" Thompson (born 7 June 1985) is a sprinter from Cascade, Trinidad and Tobago who specializes in the 100 metres. He was the silver medalist in the event at the 2008 Beijing Olympics, running a (then) personal best of 9.89 seconds. In 2014, Thompson lowered his personal best to the national record time of 9.82.

He won NCAA titles indoors and outdoors in 2008. Thompson has also won medals with the national relay team, taking silver medals at both the 2008 Olympics and the 2009 World Championships in Athletics, where he ran a national record time.


He ran for Louisiana State University as a member of the LSU Tigers track and field team and set NCAA Indoor record in the 60 metres in 2008.[1]

In his first World Championships in Athletics in Osaka in 2007, Thompson reached the second round but finished eighth in a time of 10.44 seconds. His personal best time is 9.89 seconds, achieved in August 2008 in Beijing, China, during the Olympic 100 m final where he won silver.[2] Thompson's personal best for the 200 metres is 20.18 s which ran in Fayetteville for LSU. His 60 metres best is 6.51 s, achieved in March 2008 in Fayetteville. He won the relay gold medal at the 2008 Central American and Caribbean Championships with Trinidad and Tobago.

In the 2008 Summer Olympics he competed in the 100 m sprint and placed first in his heat ahead of Martial Mbandjock with a time of 10.24 s. He qualified for the second round, beating Tyson Gay and Mbandjock, with a winning time of 9.99 s. He qualified in the semi-finals with a time of 9.93 s, finishing second to Asafa Powell. In the final he finished in second place; he was far behind winner Usain Bolt (9.69 s) but his time of 9.89 s was enough to win the silver medal and set a new personal best. His new best time made him the second fastest Trinidadian 100 m sprinter ever, after Ato Boldon.[3]

Together with Keston Bledman, Aaron Armstrong and Marc Burns he also competed at the 4 x 100 metres relay. In their qualification heat they placed first in front of Japan, the Netherlands and Brazil. Their time of 38.26 s was the fastest of all sixteen teams participating in the first round and they qualified for the final. Armstrong was replaced by Emmanuel Callender for the final race and they sprinted to a time of 38.06 s, the second time after the Jamaican team, winning the silver medal.

Thompson was involved in a car accident on 1 January 2009, resulting in minor injuries which caused him to miss the indoor athletics season.[4] He competed at the 2009 World Championships in Athletics and reached the 100 m final, finishing in fifth place with a season's best of 9.93 seconds in fastest ever race at that point in time. He teamed up with fellow finalist Marc Burns for the relay and ran a national record time of 37.62 seconds to finish as runners-up behind the Jamaican team.[5]

He achieved a 100/200 m double at the 2010 national championships.[6] His season was highlighted by a win on the 2010 IAAF Diamond League circuit, taking the 100 m at the Prefontaine Classic with a wind-assisted time of 9.89 seconds.[7] In August Thompson broke the national record with a run of 9.85 s at the 2011 national championships. The achievement, which ranked him ninth fastest in all-time lists, eclipsed Ato Boldon's record by 0.01 seconds.[8] Despite this form, he failed to make the 100 m final at the 2011 World Championships in Athletics, being eliminated in the semis, although he did anchor the relay team to fifth place in the final.

At the 2012 national championships he had his win streak beaten by Keston Bledman and had to settle for second with his time of 9.96 seconds.[9]

During the 2014 national championships he won the finals, improving the national record with a run of 9.82 s, becoming one of the 10 fastest 100m runners ever.[10]

Major competition record[edit]

Year Competition Venue Position Event Notes
2006 NACAC U23 Championships Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic 3rd 4×100 m relay 39.98
2007 NACAC Championships San Salvador, El Salvador 1st 100 m 10.32
3rd 4×100 m relay 39.92
Pan American Games Rio de Janeiro, Brazil 4th (h) 4×100 m relay 39.02
World Championships Osaka, Japan 31st (h) 100 m 10.44
2008 Central American and Caribbean Championships Cali, Colombia 1st 4×100 m relay 38.54
Olympic Games Beijing, China 2nd 100 m 9.89
2nd 4×100 m relay 38.06
2009 World Championships Berlin, Germany 5th 100 m 9.93
2nd 4×100 m relay 37.62
2011 World Championships Daegu, South Korea 10th (sf) 100 m 10.20
6th 4×100 m relay 39.01
2012 Olympic Games London, England 7th 100 m 9.98
3rd 4×100 m relay 38.12

Personal bests[edit]

Date Event Venue Time (seconds)
15 March 2008 60 metres Fayetteville, United States 6.51
21 June 2014 100 metres Port of Spain, Trinidad and Tobago 9.82
30 May 2008 200 metres Fayetteville, United States 20.18
  • 60m and 200m taken from IAAF profile[11]
  • 100m taken from NAAA TT Website[12]


  1. ^ 2008 NCAA Men's Indoor Track and Field Championships Results and Records . NCAA (2008). Retrieved on 2009-09-19.
  2. ^ Mickles, Sheldon (18 May 2008). Thompson wins SEC 100M men's track title. Retrieved on 2009-01-26.
  3. ^ "100 Metres All Time". IAAF. 26 January 2009. Retrieved 2009-01-26. 
  4. ^ Richard Thompson speaks after the accident. Trinidad and Tobago Guardian (10 January 2009). Retrieved on 2009-01-26.
  5. ^ Mulkeen, Jon (22 August 2010). Event Report – Men's 4x100m Relay – Final. IAAF. Retrieved on 2011-01-27.
  6. ^ Laurence, Kwame (28 June 2010). Thompson scores double at Trinidad & Tobago champs. IAAF. Retrieved on 2011-01-27.
  7. ^ Hooker second in New York. ABC (13 June 2010). Retrieved on 2011-01-27.
  8. ^ Jad Adrian (August 2011). Richard Thompson 100m 9.85s (+1.0) Video. Retrieved 2011-08-14.
  9. ^ Lawrence, Kwame (25 June 2012). Bledman wins Trinidad and Tobago title in 9.86. IAAF. Retrieved on 2012-07-09.
  10. ^ Thompson and Ahye run world-leading 100m times at Trinidad And Tobago Championships
  11. ^ Profile: Thompson Richard. IAAF. Retrieved on 2009-01-26.
  12. ^ NAAATT Events & Results 2011 – Sagicor/NAAA Open Championships – Men 100 Meter Dash. NAAA. Retrieved on 2011-08-13.

External links[edit]