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Gold goes to favourite Brown

Gold goes to favourite Brown

David Martin (PA) for the IAAF

 

17th July 2002 - Living up to the high expectations placed upon his teenage shoulders, Darrel Brown proved a convincing winner of the World Junior Championships 100 metres title tonight in Kingston.

 

Running a perfectly controlled sprint race, Brown the odds-on pre-event favourite, was fastest from his blocks winning in a new championship record time of 10.09.

 

Making it a magnificent double for Trindad, Marc Burns blew away the challenge of Willie Hordge. Again matching the personal best of 10.18 he ran in his semi final he had 0.18 to spare ahead of the American at the finishing line.

 

But the night belonged to 17-year-old Brown. Ten years after fellow countryman Ato Boldon took the title in Seoul, Brown gave a preview that in the future, he himself also possesses the raw talent to improve on the outstanding record of his mentor.

 

It was a victory Brown had been planning since finishing fourth on his Championship debut in Santiago de Chile in 2000. In the build-up, last year the precocious talent finished runner-up in the Pan-American Juniors when beaten by teammate Burns.

 

However also in 2001 at the World Youth Championships, Brown had a first taste of gold at international level. In Debrecen he made a massive impression when relegating Hordge to the runner-up position.   

 

Since then Brown has just got better and better. In this year's Carifta Games he smashed Boldon's national junior record and constantly improved as the season progressed.

 

Brown refused to admit his domination from gun-to-tape, He said: "My start wasn't one of my best," even though it left all of his rivals at an immediate disadvantage.

 

When putting his foot fully on the throttle with 30 metres remaining, there was only going to be one gold medallist.

 

The winner added: "At one stage I realised we were all locked up in the last five metres. I had to work real hard for the victory."

 

Although there was talk of Brown smashing the 10 seconds barrier if the conditions were perfect, there was a slight headwind of 0.06 metres-per-second.

 

But lowering his own Trinidad record he also took 0.03 off the 10.12 championship mark the Briton Christian Malcolm, set in Annecy in 1998. 

 

"My main aim coming here was to win the race," said Brown. "Breaking records can wait until next year when I will still be a junior. I've time on my hands."

 

Brown who plans to follow runner-up Burns into Auburn University in the USA next January, admits they are great friends and rivals. He insisted: "Between us it didn't matter which one of us won tonight."

 

There was drama even before the women's 100m final got underway. Olga Fyodorova one of the favourites, started the race with her left thigh heavily bandaged.

 

After 60m the Russian champion's luck ran out when she shot into the air when suffering a hamstring tear from the injury.

 

Even without her, the final promised to be a corker. Six of the starters produced their fastest ever times in their semi finals. But when it mattered most, Lauryn Williams produced the best race of her life.

 

Despite being last to come out of blocks, the US champion had taken charge of the race at the halfway stage. Maintaining her form she edged away to win in a personal best  11.33.

 

Runner-up Simone Facey matched the silver medal she captured in last year's World Youth Championships. The Jamaican's personal best time of 11.43 separated Williams from her fellow American Marshevette Hooker who ran 10.48.

 

There was an upset in the hammer, a surprise victory going to Werner Smit. A mighty 76.43m effort from the South African - he was already leading with an opening throw of 74.63m - earned him an easy win.

 

Of the pre-event favourites, only runner-up Ali Mohamed Al-Zinkawi justified his billing with a best of 73.69m. The bronze medal behind the Kuwaiti went to Aliaksandr Kazulka of Belarusia with a throw of 72.72m.

 

Vladimir Kanaykin the fastest performer in the world this year, won the 10K Walk in 41:41:40. The Russian kept his nerve to outpace the Chinese pair of Xu Xingde (41:44:00) and Lu Ronghua (41:46.07).

 

Cuba showed its in-depth triple jump strength. Victory went to Mabel Gay, leader out the end of each round. She lifted herself out to 14.09m with her final attempt. Team mate Arianna Martinez was runner-up clearing 13.74m. Third place went to Brazil's Kella da Silva Costa who jumped 13.70.

 

There was a close finish to the decathlon. Only 16 points seperated gold medallist Leonid Andreyev. The Uzbekistan star held off the challenge of France's Nadir El Fassi with a core of 7693 points. Third was Finland's Mikko Halvari who over the two days competition accumulated 7587 points.