W4x400m, Â© Dan Vernon for World Athletics/ World Athletics Relays Silesia 21
Netherlands’ Men win 4x400m! Â© Dan Vernon for World Athletics
Justin Lagat covered the World Relays in Silesia, from two broadcasts in Kenya: Facebook and You Tube.
This is Justin’s report on day 2.
Luck -both bad and good, action, drama, and emotions marked the second day of the world relays in Silesia. It was one tense and exciting final after another. There were seven gold medals in total to be won within a span of just one hour and 22 minutes!
It was a fantastic start to the evening for Italy as they won the first gold medal of the day in the mixed 4x400m relay. They then took the silver medal in the men’s 4x100m before winning another gold medal in the women 4x100m relay. The last gold medal for them came in an unexpected manner as the Netherlands who were clearly ahead of everyone coming into the last 100m leg had trouble in exchanging their baton and Italy seized the opportunity to go for the gold medal. The Netherlands would finish third behind Poland.
Brazil had another bad day again. One of their runners in their men 4x100m relay team stepped on the line and they were disqualified after finishing second in a close finish with South Africa. Their women 4x100m relay team had also been disqualified in the first heat the previous day.
Poland set a new national record of 1:34:98 at their home-ground to win the women’s 4x200m gold, followed by Ireland also in a new national record of 1:35:93. Ecuador took the bronze medal.
Germany won the men’s 4x200m relay in which Kenya, a nation that is rarely known in the sprints, surprised everyone with a second finish to win the silver medal. Portugal completed the podium.
The climax of the evening happened in the men and women’s 4x400m relays. The competition was so close in both events and it was hard to predict the winners up to the last 100m of their last legs. Cuba won the women’s race ahead of Poland and Germany, while the Netherlands won the men’s race ahead of Japan and Botswana respectively.