Dayron Robles after his 12.92 in Stuttgart (Getty Images)
Dayron Robles after his 12.92 in Stuttgart (Getty Images)
  • COUNTRY Cuba Cuba
  • DATE OF BIRTH 19 NOV 1986


Focus on Athletes biographies are produced by the IAAF Communications Dept, and not by the IAAF Statistics and Documentation Division. If you have any enquiries concerning the information, please use the Contact IAAF page, selecting ‘Focus on Athletes Biographies’ in the drop down menu of contact area options.


Updated 28 February 2008


Dayron ROBLES, Cuba (110m hurdles)

Born 19 November 1986 Guantánamo, Cuba 1.92m 80kg

Coach: Santiago Antúnez


Dayron Robles comes from an athletics background. His uncle, Eulogio Robles, was a member of the Cuba national team in the 1970s and ran 51.76 for the 400m hurdles. Also involved in sports was his mother, Regla Mercy, a housewife, who played volleyball. His father Gualberto, who passed away in 1998, was a musician and he and a cousin, Henry Murray, who died in 2006, are the main motivation for him every time he steps on a track.

Robles took up athletics at the age of 10 and, as is usual in Cuba, he competed in various disciplines. Trainers had realised his potential for the hurdles, but he preferred the high jump, and did not start to focus on the hurdles until the age of 14, making great progress since.

After winning at the National Youth Games, Robles was promoted to the national junior team in 2002. He made his international debut when he was sixth at the 2003 World Youth Championships in Sherbrooke, Canada. He kept improving and gave Cuba its only medal at the 2004 World Junior Championships in Grosseto, Italy, where he finished second in the 110m hurdles.

Robles finished his junior career on a high note in 2005, breaking the 33-year old Central American and Caribbean junior record twice as he ran 13.47 and 13.46, the latter to win the Pan American junior title in Windsor, Canada.  Earlier that month he had been runner-up to his countryman, Yoel Hernandez, at the CAC Senior Championships, in Nassau, and later reached the semi-finals at the IAAF World Championships, in Helsinki.

2006 saw his consecration on the international scene, and his start as a senior could not have been better. With no previous indoor experience, he claimed the silver medal at the World Indoor Championships, in Moscow. He went on to win his first national senior title at the 3rd National Olympics and improved his personal best to 13.32 in Havana before starting his European tour, where he burst into the elite in his event.

After three wins in Spain (13.28 in Alcalá de Henares), he posted a surprising 13.11 to finish second in Paris on his Golden League debut, ahead of France’s world champion Ladji Doucouré and China’s Olympic gold medallist Liu Xiang. He ran even faster with 13.04 to finish fourth in the historic Lausanne race on July 11, in which Liu Xiang broke the world record. “I did not have a good start in that race, but the day was magic,” Robles said. “Everyone ran so fast. I am young and I already reached the elite level. Now I have to stay there”.

Robles confirmed his new standing with a 13.08 win at the IAAF Grand Prix, in Madrid, before heading back to the other side of the Atlantic. There he clinched his first international senior title when winning at the Central American and Caribbean Games in Cartagena, Colombia, clocking 13.12 to break the Games record (13.27) of his countryman and 2000 Olympic champion, Anier Garcia.

With eight races this year clocking 13.20 or faster, Robles propelled himself from the 28th at the start of the season to the first place in the IAAF World Rankings for his event on 11 September 2006. Just a week before the World Cup, Robles equaled Garcia’s national record of 13.00 to finish second to Liu Xiang at the World Athletics Final, in Stuttgart, becoming the 13th fastest hurdler in history.

“I came to Stuttgart to do my best and I did,” Robles said. “If I had not hit the last hurdle, I could have dipped under 13 seconds. I will achieve that. It is just a matter of time.”  Being the youngest member of the Americas team for the World Cup, he ended his season on a high note with third place in Athens.

In 2007, Robles confirmed his progress and posted the fastest time over 60m hurdles in three years (7.38), just 0.01 short of Garcia’s CAC indoor record. Outdoors, he achieved his first Golden League win, in Paris, and went on to claim the Pan American gold, in Rio de Janeiro, the second senior title in his short but already successful career.

“It felt great to make my contribution to my country as we finished on top in the athletics competition and second in the overall medal table, behind the US and closely followed by Brazil“. The 20-year old also extended the winning streak of Cuban male sprint hurdlers at the Pan American Games as his compatriots, Garcia and Yuniel Hernandez, won in Winnipeg (1999) and Santo Domingo (2003).

After a successful campaign, Robles could not live up to expectations as he finished fourth at the World Championships, in Osaka. But he made up for the disappointment with the best race of his life, once again in Stuttgart, blazing to a superb 12.92 win at the World Athletics Final and erasing his compatriot and 2000 Olympic champion Anier Garcia’s seven-year old CAC record of 13.00. He ended his season with a convincing win over world and Olympic champion and world record holder Liu Xiang in the latter’s home town of Shanghai.

Indoors in 2008, Robles has been dominant over the barriers. Having clocked eight of the 10 fastest times this winter, he first broke the CAC record in Stuttgart on February 2, before improving it to 7.33, the second fastest of all-time, six days later in Düsseldorf.

That time is just 0.03 seconds off Colin Jackson’s world record of 7.30, which the Briton set in 1994. After such a superb campaign, he looks forward to winning his first global title at the World Indoor Championships in Valencia.

Two weeks before the championships, he visited the southern Spanish city. “I wanted to know the track first-hand before the event,” Robles said. “Obviously, after my runner-up place at the Moscow World Indoors two years ago my only target is the gold medal. I won’t be satisfied other than that. The title is more important than the world record which I feel capable of breaking.”

Robles also commented about China’s reigning Olympic and World 110m hurdles champion Liu Xiang.

“I only know that he’s competing in Valencia which means more rivalry and that’s good for me, no problem,” the Cuban said. “But I train every day to become the best athlete in the world so I don’t fear anyone, including Xiang.”

He considers Santiago Antúnez, his coach, as a father and his teammates in the athletics squad are like brothers. “Anier Garcia is like a school for me,” Robles said. “He has been my reference since I got to the national team. I admire him both as an athlete as a person. We are good friends. Yoel and Yuniel Hernandez have also maintained Cuban hurdling on top. We are heirs of a successful tradition, coming from the times of Alejandro Casañas, Emilio Valle, Erick Batte and before.”

One of his best friends in the team is 2007 triple jump world champion Yargelis Savigne. They both come from the same roots in the easternmost province of Guantanamo.

Off the track, Robles loves to party, listen to music and dance. He has a special preference for reggae and rap. After taking a physical conditioning course, he started his sport and physical education studies at the Manuel Fajardo University of Sports and Physical Education.


Personal Bests

110m hurdles: 12.92 (2006), 60m hurdles: 7.33 (2008)


Yearly Progression

2002 - 15.01; 2003 - 14.28; 2004 - 13.75; 2005 - 13.46; 2006 - 13.00; 2007 - 12.92.
Indoors
2006 - 7.46; 2007 - 7.38; 2008 - 7.33


Career Highlights

2003 6th  World Youth Championships
2004  2nd  World Junior Championships
2005 2nd  Central American and Caribbean Championships
2005 1st  Pan American Junior Championships
2006  2nd  World Indoor Championships
2006  1st  Central American and Caribbean Games
2006 2nd World Athletics Final
2006 3rd World Cup
2007  1st  Pan American Games
2007 4th World Championships
2007 1st World Athletics Final


Prepared by Javier Clavelo for the IAAF ‘Focus on Athletes’ project. Copyright IAAF 2008.

Personal Best - Outdoor
Performance Wind Place Date
110 Metres Hurdles 12.87 +0.9 Ostrava 12 JUN 2008
110m Hurdles (91.4cm) 13.85 +1.7 Sherbrooke 10 JUL 2003
Personal Best - Indoor
Performance Wind Place Date
50 Metres Hurdles 6.39 Stockholm 21 FEB 2008
60 Metres Hurdles 7.33 Düsseldorf 08 FEB 2008
Progression - Outdoor showShow All Graphs
110 Metres Hurdles Show Graphshow
Performance Wind Place Date
2014 13.38 0.0 Warszawa (Stadion Narodowy) 23 AUG
2013 13.18 +1.8 Sotteville-lès-Rouen 08 JUL
2012 13.10 +0.1 London (OP) 08 AUG
2011 13.00 -0.2 Zagreb 13 SEP
2010 13.01 +0.3 Lausanne 08 JUL
2009 13.04 +2.0 Ostrava 17 JUN
2008 12.87 +0.9 Ostrava 12 JUN
2007 12.92 0.0 Stuttgart 23 SEP
2006 13.00 -0.6 Stuttgart 09 SEP
2005 13.46 -1.6 Windsor, CAN 29 JUL
2004 13.75 La Habana 24 JUN
110m Hurdles (91.4cm) Show Graphshow
Performance Wind Place Date
2003 13.85 +1.7 Sherbrooke 10 JUL
Progression - Indoor showShow All Graphs
50 Metres Hurdles Show Graphshow
Performance Place Date
2010 6.40 Liévin 05 MAR
2008 6.39 Stockholm 21 FEB
60 Metres Hurdles Show Graphshow
Performance Place Date
2014 7.51 Praha (O2 Arena) 25 FEB
2012 7.50 Birmingham, GBR 18 FEB
2011 7.51 Stuttgart 05 FEB
2010 7.34 Doha 14 MAR
2009 9.94 Liévin 10 FEB
2008 7.33 Düsseldorf 08 FEB
2007 7.38 Stuttgart 03 FEB
2006 7.46 Moskva (Olimpiyskiy Stadion) 11 MAR
Honours - 60 Metres Hurdles
Rank Mark Wind Place Date
13th IAAF World Indoor Championships 1 7.34 Doha 14 MAR 2010
12th IAAF World Indoor Championships 7h2 8.53 Valencia, ESP 08 MAR 2008
11th IAAF World Indoor Championships 2 7.46 Moskva (Olimpiyskiy Stadion) 11 MAR 2006
Honours - 110 Metres Hurdles
Rank Mark Wind Place Date
The XXX Olympic Games f DQ -0.3 London (OP) 08 AUG 2012
13th IAAF World Championships in Athletics f DQ -1.1 Daegu 29 AUG 2011
12th IAAF World Championships in Athletics sf3 DNF +0.1 Berlin 20 AUG 2009
The XXIX Olympic Games 1 12.93 +0.1 Beijing (National Stadium) 21 AUG 2008
5th IAAF World Athletics Final 1 12.92 0.0 Stuttgart 23 SEP 2007
11th IAAF World Championships in Athletics 4 13.15 +1.7 Osaka (Nagai Stadium) 31 AUG 2007
10th IAAF World Cup 3 13.06 +0.4 Athína (Olympic Stadium) 17 SEP 2006
4th IAAF World Athletics Final 2 13.00 -0.6 Stuttgart 09 SEP 2006
10th IAAF World Championships in Athletics 8sf3 14.16 -1.9 Helsinki 11 AUG 2005
10th IAAF World Junior Championships 2 13.77 -0.6 Grosseto 18 JUL 2004
Honours - 110m Hurdles (91.4cm)
Rank Mark Wind Place Date
3rd IAAF World Youth Championships 6 13.91 +1.9 Sherbrooke 11 JUL 2003


Focus on Athletes biographies are produced by the IAAF Communications Dept, and not by the IAAF Statistics and Documentation Division. If you have any enquiries concerning the information, please use the Contact IAAF page, selecting ‘Focus on Athletes Biographies’ in the drop down menu of contact area options.


Updated 28 February 2008


Dayron ROBLES, Cuba (110m hurdles)

Born 19 November 1986 Guantánamo, Cuba 1.92m 80kg

Coach: Santiago Antúnez


Dayron Robles comes from an athletics background. His uncle, Eulogio Robles, was a member of the Cuba national team in the 1970s and ran 51.76 for the 400m hurdles. Also involved in sports was his mother, Regla Mercy, a housewife, who played volleyball. His father Gualberto, who passed away in 1998, was a musician and he and a cousin, Henry Murray, who died in 2006, are the main motivation for him every time he steps on a track.

Robles took up athletics at the age of 10 and, as is usual in Cuba, he competed in various disciplines. Trainers had realised his potential for the hurdles, but he preferred the high jump, and did not start to focus on the hurdles until the age of 14, making great progress since.

After winning at the National Youth Games, Robles was promoted to the national junior team in 2002. He made his international debut when he was sixth at the 2003 World Youth Championships in Sherbrooke, Canada. He kept improving and gave Cuba its only medal at the 2004 World Junior Championships in Grosseto, Italy, where he finished second in the 110m hurdles.

Robles finished his junior career on a high note in 2005, breaking the 33-year old Central American and Caribbean junior record twice as he ran 13.47 and 13.46, the latter to win the Pan American junior title in Windsor, Canada.  Earlier that month he had been runner-up to his countryman, Yoel Hernandez, at the CAC Senior Championships, in Nassau, and later reached the semi-finals at the IAAF World Championships, in Helsinki.

2006 saw his consecration on the international scene, and his start as a senior could not have been better. With no previous indoor experience, he claimed the silver medal at the World Indoor Championships, in Moscow. He went on to win his first national senior title at the 3rd National Olympics and improved his personal best to 13.32 in Havana before starting his European tour, where he burst into the elite in his event.

After three wins in Spain (13.28 in Alcalá de Henares), he posted a surprising 13.11 to finish second in Paris on his Golden League debut, ahead of France’s world champion Ladji Doucouré and China’s Olympic gold medallist Liu Xiang. He ran even faster with 13.04 to finish fourth in the historic Lausanne race on July 11, in which Liu Xiang broke the world record. “I did not have a good start in that race, but the day was magic,” Robles said. “Everyone ran so fast. I am young and I already reached the elite level. Now I have to stay there”.

Robles confirmed his new standing with a 13.08 win at the IAAF Grand Prix, in Madrid, before heading back to the other side of the Atlantic. There he clinched his first international senior title when winning at the Central American and Caribbean Games in Cartagena, Colombia, clocking 13.12 to break the Games record (13.27) of his countryman and 2000 Olympic champion, Anier Garcia.

With eight races this year clocking 13.20 or faster, Robles propelled himself from the 28th at the start of the season to the first place in the IAAF World Rankings for his event on 11 September 2006. Just a week before the World Cup, Robles equaled Garcia’s national record of 13.00 to finish second to Liu Xiang at the World Athletics Final, in Stuttgart, becoming the 13th fastest hurdler in history.

“I came to Stuttgart to do my best and I did,” Robles said. “If I had not hit the last hurdle, I could have dipped under 13 seconds. I will achieve that. It is just a matter of time.”  Being the youngest member of the Americas team for the World Cup, he ended his season on a high note with third place in Athens.

In 2007, Robles confirmed his progress and posted the fastest time over 60m hurdles in three years (7.38), just 0.01 short of Garcia’s CAC indoor record. Outdoors, he achieved his first Golden League win, in Paris, and went on to claim the Pan American gold, in Rio de Janeiro, the second senior title in his short but already successful career.

“It felt great to make my contribution to my country as we finished on top in the athletics competition and second in the overall medal table, behind the US and closely followed by Brazil“. The 20-year old also extended the winning streak of Cuban male sprint hurdlers at the Pan American Games as his compatriots, Garcia and Yuniel Hernandez, won in Winnipeg (1999) and Santo Domingo (2003).

After a successful campaign, Robles could not live up to expectations as he finished fourth at the World Championships, in Osaka. But he made up for the disappointment with the best race of his life, once again in Stuttgart, blazing to a superb 12.92 win at the World Athletics Final and erasing his compatriot and 2000 Olympic champion Anier Garcia’s seven-year old CAC record of 13.00. He ended his season with a convincing win over world and Olympic champion and world record holder Liu Xiang in the latter’s home town of Shanghai.

Indoors in 2008, Robles has been dominant over the barriers. Having clocked eight of the 10 fastest times this winter, he first broke the CAC record in Stuttgart on February 2, before improving it to 7.33, the second fastest of all-time, six days later in Düsseldorf.

That time is just 0.03 seconds off Colin Jackson’s world record of 7.30, which the Briton set in 1994. After such a superb campaign, he looks forward to winning his first global title at the World Indoor Championships in Valencia.

Two weeks before the championships, he visited the southern Spanish city. “I wanted to know the track first-hand before the event,” Robles said. “Obviously, after my runner-up place at the Moscow World Indoors two years ago my only target is the gold medal. I won’t be satisfied other than that. The title is more important than the world record which I feel capable of breaking.”

Robles also commented about China’s reigning Olympic and World 110m hurdles champion Liu Xiang.

“I only know that he’s competing in Valencia which means more rivalry and that’s good for me, no problem,” the Cuban said. “But I train every day to become the best athlete in the world so I don’t fear anyone, including Xiang.”

He considers Santiago Antúnez, his coach, as a father and his teammates in the athletics squad are like brothers. “Anier Garcia is like a school for me,” Robles said. “He has been my reference since I got to the national team. I admire him both as an athlete as a person. We are good friends. Yoel and Yuniel Hernandez have also maintained Cuban hurdling on top. We are heirs of a successful tradition, coming from the times of Alejandro Casañas, Emilio Valle, Erick Batte and before.”

One of his best friends in the team is 2007 triple jump world champion Yargelis Savigne. They both come from the same roots in the easternmost province of Guantanamo.

Off the track, Robles loves to party, listen to music and dance. He has a special preference for reggae and rap. After taking a physical conditioning course, he started his sport and physical education studies at the Manuel Fajardo University of Sports and Physical Education.


Personal Bests

110m hurdles: 12.92 (2006), 60m hurdles: 7.33 (2008)


Yearly Progression

2002 - 15.01; 2003 - 14.28; 2004 - 13.75; 2005 - 13.46; 2006 - 13.00; 2007 - 12.92.
Indoors
2006 - 7.46; 2007 - 7.38; 2008 - 7.33


Career Highlights

2003 6th  World Youth Championships
2004  2nd  World Junior Championships
2005 2nd  Central American and Caribbean Championships
2005 1st  Pan American Junior Championships
2006  2nd  World Indoor Championships
2006  1st  Central American and Caribbean Games
2006 2nd World Athletics Final
2006 3rd World Cup
2007  1st  Pan American Games
2007 4th World Championships
2007 1st World Athletics Final


Prepared by Javier Clavelo for the IAAF ‘Focus on Athletes’ project. Copyright IAAF 2008.