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Baptiste opens season with relay silver
World Championships women’s 100 metres bronze medallist Kelly-Ann Baptiste, began her quest for Olympic gold in London, England with a second place finish in the women’s 4X400 relay at the Florida Relays in Gainsville, Florida earlier this month. Baptiste and her Pure Athletics teammates took the runners-up spot in three minutes and 28.07 seconds.
The quartet of Baptiste, Bahamian Debbie Ferguson-McKenzie and Americans Shalonda Solomon and Francena Mc Clory were beaten to the line by the One Goal Athletics team which won in 3:24.14. American Natasha Hastings, daughter of former national sprinter Joan Gardner, anchored One Goal to victory.
Baptiste competed in her first race of the year since her successful 2011 season where she captured third in the World Championships 100m finals in 10.98 seconds. Hilenn James (Georgia University) was third in the women’s university invitational discus event with her first and only throw of 51.70m. James was also fifth in the shot put 15.79m.
Akeela Bravo (Jacksonville) finished sixth in the women’s university hammer throw with a distance of 52.81m. Bravo returned to place 15th in the discus event (42.81). Ashlee Smith (Mc Neese) was tenth in the women’s university shot put with a distance of 13.74m.
Afiya Walker was 28th in the women’s 400m. The former Wyoming University student clocked 54.58 in finishing fifth in heat three. Keston Bledman, Lalonde Gordon and Rondell Sorillo helped their respective teams to victories in relay action. Bledman and Pure Athletics won the men’s 4X100m relay in a meet record of 38.64. Bledman, who recently sped to an Olympic qualifying 10.12 in the men’s 100m, ran the back straight.
Gordon paced his Zenith Velocity club to gold in the men’s 4X200m in 1:21.57 seconds. The World Indoor 4X400 bronze medallist ran the second leg. Gordon and his Zenith Velocity teammates were third in the men’s 4X400m relay (3:06.12). Jovon Toppin was a member of Florida outfit which was sixth (3:06.90).
Sorillo was a member of the World Express quartet which took the 1600 Sprint medley in 3:17.92. Emmanuel Stewart (Morgan State) was second in the discus throw with 51.50. Stewart also grabbed 12th spot in the Javelin (57.49).
FLORIDA RELAYS, Gainesville, Florida
University Invitational Discus
3 Hilenn James (Georgia) -51.70
University Invitational. Shot put
5 Hilenn James (Georgia) - 15.79m
University Shot put
10 Ashlee Smith (Mc Neese) - 13.74
6 Akeela Bravo (Jacksonville) - 52.81m
15 Akeela Bravo (Jacksonville) -42.31
1 Pure Athletics(Keston Bledman) - 38.64
1 Zenith Velocity (Lalonde Gordon) - 1:21.82
3 Zenith Velocity (Gordon) - 3:06.12.
1600 Sprint Medley
1 World Express (Rondell Sorillo) - 3:17.92.
2 Emmanuel Stewart (Morgan State) -51.50
12Emmanuel Stewart (Morgan State) 57.4.
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