IAAF World Diary: in Battle Royale, USA defeats Bahamas in 4x400m, by Larry Eder

It was a race for the ages. Put 15,000 Bahamanian track fans in a stadium already ablaze, as the men's 4x 400 meter was called to the starting line.

Chris Brown, the godfather of Bahamian Track & Field, 
photo by PhotoRun.net 

Strong teams by all of the contenders, from Trinidad and Tobago, to the US to the Bahamas. 

And this was to be the ultimate battle, as the Bahamas team, lead by Chris Brown, would be taking on the US team, lead by LaShawn Merritt. 

The Bahamas team was LaToy Williams on lead, Demetrius Pinder on second leg, Chris Brown to break it open on third, and anchor was Michael Mathieu. Question on many people's minds was, where was Ramon Miller from last night? 

The US team had David Verberg on lead, Tony McQuay on second leg, Christian Taylor on third leg and LaShawn Merritt for the anchor. 

Trinidad & Tobago was Lalonde Gordon, Renny Quow, Machel Cedenio, Jarrin Solomon. 

In the first leg, David Verberg got out well, as LaToy Williams and Lalonde Gordon were both with him at the hand off. Demetrius Pinder and Tony McQuay dueled, with Renny Quow right there. 

On the third leg, Christian Taylor battled Machel Cedenio as Chris Brown put in all he had to break the race wide open. Taylor held on as Brown only built a four meter lead. Chris Brown ran a fantastic leg and he nearly broke the competition open here! 

Taylor held his cool and got a good pass to LaShawn Merritt, who was in third at the exchange. In the heat of the exchange, Jamaica lost its baton and finished last! 

LaShawn Merritt is a warrior. This guy loves to race, and he just got out there, behind Jarrin Solomon and Michael Mathieu, and waited. He was third at 150 meters, 200 meters, 250 meters, and then, off the turn, LaShawn Merritt opened up that big stride a couple of times, and, he was past Solomon.

Next, at the top of the straight, LaShawn Merritt ran on the outside of Micheal Mathieu, the anchor for the Bahamas. Merritt seemed to stay next to Mathieu for a long second, then, he was past and had a five meter lead.

LaShawn Merritt knew he had it won and with twenty meters to go, ran it through the finish, hitting the line in 2:57.25. The Bahamas was right behind, in 2:57.59! 

The crowd had been going nuts all night long and this race, they were at their loudest. 

Men's 4x400m relays, 1. USA, 2:57.25, CR, 2. Bahamas, 2:57.59, SB, 3. Trinidad & Tobago, 2:58.34, NR, 4. Great Britain and N.I., 3:00.32 SB, 5. Cuba, 3:00.61 SB, 6. Venezuala, 3:01.44, SB, 7. Brazil, 3:03.87, 8. Jamaica, 3:10.23, #worldrelays

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