The United States dominated the 3rd Telus NACAC Under 23 Championships, held last weekend in this Canadian city, which successfully hosted the 3rd IAAF World Youth Championships last year.
With a team of over 70 competitors, the USA collected 57 medals (28 gold, 19 silver and 9 bronze) and only twelve of its athletes did not reach podium positions in the individual events!
Jamaica was second in the tally with 20 medals (4-8-8), ahead of Canada (4-4-11), Mexico (4-3-4), Netherland Antilles (1-1-0) and Saint Kits and Nevis (1-0-0).
Eleven of the 28 participating countries won at least one medal. Only four member nations of the North, Central American and Caribbean Athletics Confederation (NACAC) did not show up, with Cuba the most notable absentee. The championships drew more than 400 athletes in total.
Although the USA was a convincing overall winner, Caribbean athletes produced outstanding performances and dominated the shortest sprint events.
Netherlands Antilles' Churandy Martina, the 2003 Pan American Junior champion, clocked 10.21 - a championships record - to claim the 100m title, after posting 10.30 in the heats. Martina, who has run a 10.13 PB this year, added the 200m silver with 20.75, behind USA's Wallace Spearmon (20.59). Martina, who qualified for the Olympic Games in Athens, gave his country their first two medals in the history of the NACAC champs.
Saint Kits and Nevis' Tiandra Ponteen ran very close to her personal best (51.19 to 51.00) to surprisingly win the women's 400m final, followed home by the stronger favourites Dee Dee Trotter (51.46) and Monique Henderson (51.67), who were third and fifth in the USA Olympic Trials. Both have run much faster this season, with respective times of 50.28 and 50.53.
Ponteen's success was actually her Island's first medal won by a woman in NACAC champs history.
Trotter and Henderson found compensation in the 4x400 metres Relay. Accompanied by Charlette Griggs and Cassandra Reed, they posted 3:29.10 to break one of the 16 records set in the three-day athletics festival.
NCAA champion Chelsea Johnson (4.30) was the clear favourite in the Pole Vault, but no heighted, and victory went to Mexico's Cecilia Villar with just 3.60.
USA champion and Olympian Laura Gerraughty (Shot Put) and NCAA gold medallists Dan Taylor (Shot Put), Joshua Walker (110m hurdles) and Rebecca Breisch (Discus) also contributed to the US team’s haul, as well as Laron Bennett (400m Hurdles), Eric Brown (Javelin), Amber Ferner (3000m Steeple), Chioma Aduba (Triple Jump) and Jamie Krzyminski (5000m), who also smashed the competition records.
Canadian success was led by Tyler Christopher, who posted a convincing 45.25 to win the men’s 400m gold in a new championships standard. James Steacy also bettered the previous mark in the Hammer with a 69.82m toss. Graeme Wells and Darolyn Trembath, both in the 1.500m, were the host country's two other gold medallists.
Jamaica based its performance on it’s women’s performances by which the Island clinched four titles: Nadine Palmer in the 100m (11.39) and Shevon Stoddart (400m Hurdles) and the 4x100m team. They all improved the championships record.
Palmer, sprint medallists Kerron Steward and Shernette Hyatt-Davis plus Alecia Sewell anchored in the quartet. Carlene Robinson took the 800m gold.
Mexico once again depended on its long distance runners and race walkers to place fourth overall in the medal tally. More titles could have been won, but the men's and women's 10.000 metres were not contested.
Saint Lucia (0-1-1) won its first medals in the history of the event. The Dominican Republic (0-2-0), Barbados (0-1-5), Bahamas (0-1-2) and Grenada (0-0-1) were also present in the medal tally.
Javier Clavelo Robinson for the IAAF
The list of 2004 NACAC champions in Sherbrooke follows:
100m: Nadine Palmer JAM 11.39 (0.0) CR
200m: Lakadron Ivery USA 24.42 (-4.0)
400m Tiandra Ponteen SKN 51.19 CR
800m: Carlene Robinson JAM 2:04.04
1.500m: Darolyn Trembath CAN 4:29.20
5.000m: Jamie Krzyminski USA 16:26.51 CR
3.000m ST: Amber Ferner USA 10:33.03 CR
100m H: Lori Jones USA 13.05 (+0.0)
400m H: Shevon Stoddart JAM 56.86 CR
HJ: Kaylene Wagner USA 1.87
PV: Cecilia Villar MEX 3.60
LJ: April Holiness USA 6.28w (+3.3)
TJ: Chioma Aduba USA 13.32 (+0.5) CR
SP: Laura Gerraughty USA 17.32 CR
DT: Rebecca Breisch USA 53.26 CR
HT: Loree Smith USA 63.83
JT: Dana Pounds USA 53.15
Heptathlon: Jacquelyn Johnson USA 5485 (13.81-1.72-10.74-25.52/5.77-41.06-2:28.27)
10.000m W: Anne Favolice USA 52:12.00
4x100m: Jamaica 43.62 CR
(Kerron Steward, Nadine Palmer, Shernette Hyatt-Davis, Alecia Sewell) 4x400m: United States 3:29.10 CR
(Deh ashia Trottier, Charlette Griggs, Cassandra Reed, Monique Henderson)
100m Churandy Martina AHO 10.21 (+0.1) CR
200m: Wallace Spearmon USA 20.59 (0.0)
400m: Tyler Christopher CAN 45.25 CR
800m: Marc Sylvestre USA 1:48.60
1.500m: Graeme Wells CAN 3:49.30
5.000m: Edher Cortez MEX 14:47.32
3.000m ST: Noe Durado-Ruelas MEX 8:52.42
110m H: Joshua Walker USA 13.78 (-0.8)
400m H: Laron Bennett USA 49.40 CR
HJ: Keith Moffat USA 2.15
PV: Jonathan Takahashi USA 5.20
LJ: Juane Armon USA 7.52 (+1.1)
TJ: Arik Wilson USA 16.69 (-0.6)
SP: Jeff Chakouian USA 18.74
DT: Michael Robertson USA 58.57
HT: James Steacy CAN 69.82 CR
JT: Eric Brown USA 73.11 CR
Decathlon: James Hardee USA 7218 (10.94-6.72-12.56-1.96-49.12/14.41-41.63-4.30-46.39-5:15.00)
20.000m W: Horacio Nava Reza MEX 1:33:29.00
4x100m: United States 39.03 CR
(Paul Felix, Wallace Spearmon, Kyle Farmer, Ernest Wiggins)
4x400m: Uni ted States 3:02.36
(Craig Everhart, Benjamin Wiggins, Laron Bennett, Andrew Rock)
CR- Championships Record
The NACAC Championships was held for the first time in Monterrey, Mexico (2000) and two years later in San Antonio, Texas (USA). The first two editions drew athletes aged under 25 years old.
Past champions include Saint Kits and Nevis' 2003 world champion Kim Collins, Bahamas' 2004 World indoor gold medallist Dominic Demeritte, and World Triple Jump bronze medallist Leevan Sands, USA's Terrence Trammell, the 110-m hurdles runner-up in 2000 Olympics, Canada's Achraf Tadili (800m) and Dominican Republic's Juana Arrendel (High Jump), both 2003 Pan American champions.