Danielle Williams, Fedrick Dacres and Donald Thomas won their events at the IAAF Continental Cup in Ostrava on Saturday (8 Sept).
Jamaican Williams ran 12.49secs to beat USA’s world record holder Kendra Harrison, 12.52secs in the women’s 100m hurdles. Both represented Team Americas.
“To be honest I didn’t expect to finish first, but I was ready to fight,” said Williams.
Bahamian Thomas took gold for Team Americans with a clearance of 2.30m over Brandon Strac of Asia-Pacific, also 2.30m, in the men’s high jump. Maksim Nedasekau of Europe 2.27m finished third.
“It was a great competition,” Thomas said.
“I became world champion nine years ago, and I’m still here able to win at major competitions,” he said while asked, “could I be happier?”
Dacres lived up to his favouritism tag by taking the men’s discus throw with 67.97m. Australian Matthew Denny (Asia-Pacific) finished second with 63.99m.
“I thought Europeans would be my rivals here and I didn’t expect on my last attempt to be competing with Matthew,” commented Dacres.
Annsert Whyte, representing Team Americas, ran a season-best 48.46secs for second behind Abderrahman Samba (Asia-Pacific), who ran a championship record, 47.37secs, in the men’s 400m hurdles.
In the women’s 400m, Stephenie-Ann McPherson ran 50.82 to take bronze for Team Americas. Salwa Did Naser (Asia-Pacific) won the event in 49.32 ahead of Caster Semenya (Africa), 49.62secs, a new South African record.
Team Americas closed out the day with victories in the sprint relays. They led the standing after day one with 135 points ahead of Europe 123, Asia-Pacific 89 and Africa 73.
The men’s team of Americans Michael Rodgers and Noah Lyles, along with Jamaicans Yohan Blake and Tyquendo Tracey, won in 38.05secs, ahead of Europe 38.96.
The all-Turkish European team included Jamaicans born Emre Zafer Barnes and Jak Ali Harvey.
Lyles commented: “Today when I was taking my gear out of the bag I thought to myself, ‘man, I would have never thought I could be in one team with Yohan Blake.’ We had good chemistry in the team; taking the baton from Mike and then pushing myself was a blast.”
Bahamian Shaunae Miller-Ubio, who ran a scathing backstretch, helped Team Americas to win the women’s 4x100m in 42.11. Europe was second in 42.55