Sprint double for VCB - Riker Hylton upsets in 400m final
Ryon Jones, Gleaner Writer
Sprint queen, Veronica Campbell-Brown, completed an impressive double as she captured the 200 metres on yesterday's final day of the Jamaica Athletics Administrative Association/Supreme Ventures National Senior Championships held over four days at the National Stadium.
Campbell-Brown posted a season-best 22.44 seconds to take the event ahead of Olympic silver medallist, Kerron Stewart, 22.63. Sherone Simpson rebounded from her disappointment in the 100m to place third in 22.73 seconds.
"I just thank God for taking me safely through these championships," Campbell-Brown who took the 100m title in 10.84 seconds on Friday night said. "I am just happy that I was able to come down here and win the 100m and was still healthy enough to finish and win the 200m."
She added: "I am just going to take a few days (rest) and go back in training and prepare for the World Championships."
Steve Mullings totally outclassed the field to take the male equivalent in 20.11. His training partner, Nickel Ashmeade, finished second in 20.32, while Mario Forsythe was third in 20.36 seconds.
The men's 400m served up the biggest surprise of the four-day meet, as Riker Hylton of Louisiana State University beat his more-seasoned competitors to win in 45.30 seconds. Leford Green, the 400m hurdles champion, finished second in 45.46 seconds, with former champion and 2006 Commonwealth Games finalist, Lansford Spence, taking third in 45.46 seconds.
National record holder in the event, Jermaine Gonzales, the only Jamaican to have gone below the 45.25 'A' standard time for the World Championships seemed to be still struggling with fitness as he finished at disappointing fourth in 45.59. Despite not finishing in the top three Gonzales should still be among the Jamaican trio to run the race in Daegu. Green is likely to forego his place in the 400m and concentrate on the 400m hurdles which he won in 49.19 seconds on Friday.
Another major surprise came in the men's 110m hurdles as Andrew Riley clipped national record-holder Dwight Thomas to take the event. Riley crossed the line in 13.36, with Thomas .02 seconds behind in 13.38 seconds. Richard Phillips was third in 13.40.
World Championships bronze medallist, Novlene Williams-Mills, found a late burst to successfully defend her 400m title. The four-time national champion stopped the clock at 50.05 seconds. Rosemarie Whyte of the Racers Track Club claimed second in 50.40 ahead of MVP's Shericka Williams, 50.81.
The women 100m hurdles was captured by former Vere Technical athlete, Indira Spence, who posted a time of 13.08 seconds. World Championships finalist Vonette Dixon finished runner-up with a time of 13.12, while World Championship bronze medallist, Delloreen Ennis-London was third in 13.13.
Reigning World champion, Brigitte Foster-Hylton, having already qualified for the championships opted not to run in the final.
Five-time defending national champion, Sheree Francis, was upstaged by Edwin Allen schoolgirl, Kimberly Williamson, in the women's high jump. Both competitors failed to clear 1.85m mark and could not be separated by count back. This saw the bar lowered to 1.83m, which Williamson cleared on her first attempt while Francis failed.
Williamson was pleased to get the better of Francis for the first time, but was disappointed she did not better her personal best.
"I am feeling good, but I came out here to get something and I didn't get that, but I am glad for the win," Williamson told The Gleaner. "My objective coming out here was to better my PR, which is 1.88m. That didn't materialise but I am satisfy with the win.