Tue | Dec 18, 2018

Christopher Taylor poised for 400m history

Published:Monday | June 18, 2018 | 12:00 AMRaymond Graham/Gleaner Writer

A new champion will be crowned in the men's 400m race this Sunday at the JAAA National Senior Athletics Championships at the National Stadium as defending champion Nathan Allen will not be competing.

Allen and his University of Auburn teammate Akeem Bloomfield, the second-fastest Jamaican 400m sprinter this season (43.94 seconds), confirmed their absence while attending an All Comers Meet at the National Stadium last Saturday. This now sets the stage for promising Calabar High School athlete Christopher Taylor to make history. Taylor, the top junior in the World in the 200m, will be competing in the senior men's 400m and could go all the way. Running the event sparingly this year,Taylor has shown that he can take on the big boys and beat them. After his big run at the Jamaica International Invitational Meet in the 200m, where he defeated a strong field, including American three-time Olympic gold medalist Lashawn Merritt, he showed that was no fluke two weeks later in the Cayman Island Invitational Meet, where he scored a big win in the 400m. Taylor, the former World Youth champion in the one-lap event, clocked a personal best of 45.24 seconds, leaving in his wake former national champion and training partner Javon Francis and national record-holder Rusheen McDonald.

Sprintec Track Club's Demish Gaye, with his season's best of 45.08 seconds, will be the top man going into the event and will want to go one place better than his second place finish last year, but Taylor is on a mission, and like he did in the Cayman Islands a few weeks ago, he could steal a march on the field and go all the way as he has a sub-45 second time on his mind.