14 AUG 2005 Report

Event Report s Men 4x400m Relay Final

Wariner whizzes round to

It is six years since that sultry night in Seville when the Bahamas' women's sprint relay quartet delivered one of the shock results in World Championships history.

But their male 4x400 metres counterparts nearly came up with a bigger surprise tonight, as they took on the mighty United States and pushed them all the way in the final event of these 10th IAAF World Championships.

It took a last-leg split of 43.55 according to the official Seiko timing by Jeremy Wariner, the individual 400m champion, to finally breakaway from the dogged pursuit of the Bahamians, as he brought the Americans home in 2min 56.91sec, to 2:57.32, a Bahamas national record, bettering the time set in Edmonton in 2001, when they also took silver to the United States.

Jamaica, another geographically relatively small nation, was also in the mix, taking on the big guys for all but the final lap, and comfortably holding off Great Britain for bronze, 2:58.07 to 2:58.82.

Nathaniel McKinney had given the Bahamas a dream start on the first leg, possibly edging the run of Andrew Rock, the individual silver medallist. But at the break, Derrick Brew tok command of pole position from Avard Moncur, and Jamaica's Brandon Simpson, as teenager Martyn Rooney slotted the British in behind the three leaders, but ahead of Trinidad and Tobago.

The pattern of the race was set. Darold Williamson kept his cool in the lead on the third leg, as Andrae Williams pushed him all the way. But once Wariner got the stick in his hand, there was little question of where the gold medal was destined - extraordinarily the Americans' only medal of the final day.