Trinidad and Tobago will bid for a second medal at the 14th IAAF World Championships here in Moscow, Russia, at 1.30 this afternoon (T&T time).
Renny Quow, Jarrin Solomon, Lalonde Gordon and Deon Lendore qualified third fastest for the men’s 4x400 metres final, the T&T quartet returning a time of three minutes, 00.48 seconds to finish second in the second of three qualifying heats. United States got home first in 2:59.85, leading all qualifiers into the final.
Today, the T&T quartet will return to the Luzhniki Stadium for the championship race, confident of following men’s 400m hurdles gold medallist Jehue Gordon onto the podium.
“We’re going to be in the top three,” Quow told the Express. “No doubt about that. I have confidence in these guys.”
Quow ran a solid leadoff leg, handing the baton to Solomon with T&T well-positioned for a strong performance.
“Was a nice, easy, relaxed run,” said Solomon. “Our goal was just to make the final. That’s all we’re trying to do, save a little bit for tomorrow (today). We should be able to go much faster.”
Next up for T&T was Lalonde Gordon.
“The first hundred I felt a little sluggish because I haven’t run a 400 in over a month. After I hit the back stretch I started to flow into it.”
Lendore, the T&T anchorman, was not entirely pleased with his run.
“Not really how I finish a 4x4, but I’ll work with that, get some treatment on my leg, and try to feel 100 per cent for the final. I came all the way over here…I have to get a medal now.”
Jamaica topped the opening heat in 3:00.41, qualifying second fastest for the championship race.
T&T’s Keshorn Walcott exited the men’s javelin event after finishing tenth in Group “A” and 19th overall in yesterday’s qualifying competition.
The reigning Olympic champion threw 78.78 metres in the first round, well short of the 82.50m automatic qualifying distance. He was unable to improve on his opening effort, fouling in round two and landing the javelin 75.84m with his final throw.
Walcott has been plagued by an ankle injury this season. However, he told the Express the injury was not to blame for his disappointing performance.
“I taped it up and it helped. My ankle was okay. I just didn’t have a good competition.”
Walcott said the pressure of being Olympic champion might well have contributed to his elimination.
“It’s always in the back of your mind, but I’ll say my major problem today was my technique. I’m going out there thinking about how far I have to throw. That was my downfall. I didn’t relax. I didn’t execute well.”
Walcott is unlikely to compete again in 2013.
“I think it’s best for me to go home and rest my foot.
“My major lesson,” he continued, “is that when I get injured, stop and recover instead of going through, because it’s hard training with injuries. You can’t do everything you want to do.”
Kai Selvon bowed out of the women’s 200m at the penultimate stage, clocking 23.21 seconds to cop seventh spot in the second of three semifinal heats.
In the opening round, Selvon finished third in heat four in 23.14 to advance automatically to the semis.
“It wasn’t my best run on the bend,” the T&T sprinter told the Express. “It was the best I could have done for now, in that race.”
But while Selvon was not satisfied with the first half of her first round race, she was impressive on the home straight, motoring to the line to secure the final automatic berth up for grabs in the heat.
At 3.17 this morning (T&T time), Lalonde Gordon competes in heat seven in the opening round of the men’s 200m. The T&T athlete will square off against 100m champion Usain Bolt, of Jamaica.
Gordon’s teammate, Kyle Greaux will be on show at 2.35, in the opening heat.
The top three finishers in each of the seven heats will progress automatically to today’s semis.
At 2.17 a.m., T&T’s Aleesha Barber faces the starter in the fifth and final women’s 100m hurdles first round heat. The first four in each heat are guaranteed lanes in the semifinal round, tomorrow.
And at 3.30, T&T will bid for a spot in the women’s 4x400m final. Running in the first of three qualifying heats, Shawna Fermin, Sparkle McKnight, Domonique Williams and Romona Modeste will take on teams from United States, Poland, Ukraine, Botswana and Czech Republic. The top two finishers earn automatic qualification for tomorrow’s final.