The United States ended a successful campaign at the IAAF World Junior Championships, Oregon 2014 with a comfortable win in the 4x400m in 3:03.31, the fourth-fastest time in the history of the competition and the quickest since the world junior record-breaking 3:01.09 time posted by another US quartet in 2004.
Japan finished strong and set an Asian junior record of 3:04.11 for silver, ahead of Jamaica, third with 3:04.67.
Josephus Lyles put the US squad in the lead on the first leg. Tyler Brown was challenged by the Bahamian, Jamaican and Japanese teams, but managed to keep the US squad in front.
Rick Morgan ran the third leg with Japan and Jamaica in close company, until Michael Cherry anchored their team with an impressive 45.04 run.
Nobuya Kato, the 400m silver medallist, overtook Jamaica’s 400m hurdles champion Jaheel Hyde in the homestretch to secure the silver medal, Japan’s fifth 4x400m relay medal in the history of the championships and their best performance in the event since 1996.
Jamaica returned to the podium for the first time since their silver in 2002.
The relay victory provided some redemption to the host country, which was left out of the men’s individual 400m medals for the first time since 2000.
For the first time ever at the World Junior Championships, the same three teams in both the men’s 4x100m and 4x400m filled the top three spots in the same order.
Javier Clavelo Robinson for the IAAF