By the time of the final event, Team Europe had already bagged the IAAF / VTB Bank Continental Cup team trophy, but there was no lack of competitive spirit on Team Americas’ behalf as an all-star team cruised to a Competition Record.
Led off by Nery Brenes of Costa Rica, Team Americas were marginally ahead of Europe at the first changeover. Brenes handed over to Bershawn Jackson, as Michael Bingham handed the European baton to European 400m Champion Kevin Borlée.
The Belgian ran a strong leg to overtake Jackson and hand over to Russia’s Vladimir Krasnov in the lead. USA’s Greg Nixon took over for Team Americas and passed Krasnov at the 200m point. With Ricardo Chambers on the final leg, the Jamaican simply had to maintain the lead.
But Martyn Rooney, a 43.7 relay runner at his best, was on the final leg for Europe and stuck to Chambers the whole way around the lap. Chambers, however, was too strong and powered across the line in 2:59.00, breaking the Competition Record set 29 years ago by the USA. Europe were rewarded with a time of 2:59.84 in second place.
Team Africa, led off by Gary Kikaya and anchored by Rabah Yousif, were a distant third in 3:02.62 with Asia-Pacific clocking 3:03.66 for fourth.
Jon Mulkeen for the IAAF