In the most unusual of seasons, certainly near the top of unconventional seasons in their track and field careers, Bahamian elite athletes are showing just how versatile they could be.
World Champion Steven Gardiner continued to show tremendous speed, running the men’s 100 meters (m) at the American Track League Meet #7 on the campus of Life University in Marietta, Georgia.
A week after running 11.17 seconds in the men’s century at the sixth American Track League meet of the season, Gardiner came back in the seventh version of the event and was almost one full second faster. He blazed down the straight away in 10.35 seconds on Saturday, knocking almost four tenths of a second off his previous personal best time of 10.71 seconds. It also puts him in the top 30 all-time among Bahamian sprinters.
Gardiner, 24, now has personal best times of 10.35 seconds in the 100m, 19.75 seconds in the 200m and 43.48 seconds in the 400m – the latter coming for the world title at the Doha World Championships a year ago. He is the national record in the two longer races.
Gardiner also holds national records in the 150m and the 300m, indoors and outdoors. The talented Bahamian is expected to shut down his season at this point and is expected to begin preparation for 2021 in short order.
Finishing second to Gardiner in Georgia on Saturday was Olympian Cejhae Greene of Antigua and Barbuda. He crossed the finish line in 10.38 seconds. American Devin Quinn was third in 10.41 seconds.
In the women’s 100m, Gaither ran to victory in 11.61 seconds after running 11.59 seconds in the heats. A couple weekends ago, in Texas where she trains, she was splendid in taking both the women’s 60 and 100m.
The 27-year-old Bahamian two-time world finalist in the women’s 200m, won the 60m sprint in a personal best time of 7.46 seconds and took the 100m in 11.25 seconds in a race that was just .3 meters per second (mps) over the allowable wind reading. It shows that she is in fine form, and ready to run some fast times, heading into an Olympic year. Those performances came at the Back to the Track Series III Meet at Prairie View A&M University in Prairie View, Texas, two weekends ago.
Both Gardiner and Gaither are showing tremendous fitness and agility heading into the postponed Olympic Games, which is now set for July 23 to August 8, 2021, still in Tokyo, Japan.
To date, just six Bahamians have qualified for the Olympics – Shaunae Miller-Uibo in both the women’s 200 and 400m, Gardiner in the men’s 400m, Gaither in the women’s 100 and 200m, Samson Colebrooke in the men’s 100m, Pedrya Seymour in the women’s 100m hurdles and Jamal Wilson in the men’s high jump.