Osceola High School grad Tynia Gaither qualified for the 200 meter finals of the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) World Championships in Doha, Qatar, where she finished eighth in a time of 22.90 seconds on Wednesday.
Gaither, running for her birthplace of the Bahamas (she was born in Freeport), was the only Caribbean woman to advance to the finals of the 200 meters. She ran a season’s best time of 22.57 in the semifinals to earn a spot in the IAAF finals for the second time; she was also eighth in the 2017 Worlds in London running a 23.07.
“I knew my start would be the determining factor, so I just went and said, ‘Come get me,’ and just finished strong,” Gaither said about her semifinal run Monday. “This race is my baby. It doesn’t compare to the 100.
“It’s all mental at this point. If I want this bad enough I’ll make it happen, and I want this as bad as anybody.”
Gaither also competed in the 100 meters, but did not qualify for the finals and finished tied for 13th in 11.20 seconds.
Earlier this year at the Pan American Games in August in Lima, Peru, Gaither won the bronze medal in the 200 in 22.76 seconds.
Gaither, a 2011 OHS graduate, won the Class 3A state title in the 200 meters in 2010 and 2011. She ran in college for Southern Cal and the University of Georgia and has been competitive on the world stage, including running and 100 and 200 under the Bahamian flag in the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.