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Previews18 May 2023

Sprints, hurdles and jumps clashes galore at Bermuda Grand Prix


Noah Lyles races at the Wanda Diamond League meeting in Monaco (© Getty Images)

Many of the world’s best sprinters, hurdlers and jumpers will be in action at the USATF Bermuda Grand Prix as Devonshire hosts the World Athletics Continental Tour Gold meeting on 21 May.

Global champions Noah Lyles, Steven Gardiner, Jasmine Camacho-Quinn and Andre De Grasse are among the stand-out names, and all of them will face strong opposition this Sunday.

Two-time world 200m champion Lyles steps down to the 100m and will line up against Olympic 200m champion De Grasse. Lyles has three 100m races under his belt so far this year, all of them inside 10 seconds (albeit two wind-assisted). De Grasse, meanwhile, hasn’t broken 10 seconds since September 2021, but usually gets it right when it matters most.

USA’s 2019 world champion Christian Coleman and Lyles’ brother Josephus will also be in the line-up. Coleman is yet to race over 100m this year, but his 2023 performances at 60m (6.47) and 200m (20.00) suggests he’ll be in good form.

De Grasse will double up in Devonshire and will contest his preferred distance, the 200m. He’ll be keen to do better than his 20.35 sixth-place finish from the recent Wanda Diamond League meeting in Doha, and the likes of Terrance Laird and Elijah Morrow are the ideal opponents to work off.

Gardiner, the Olympic and 2019 world champion, will contest his first 400m of the year. Aside from a few unfortunate DNFs, the Bahamian sprinter hasn’t lost at that distance since the 2017 World Championships. His 2022 season was cut short through injury, but he has started this year in good form, clocking 20.14 for 200m and 31.59 for 300m.

He will be up against Olympic 4x400m champion Trevor Stewart and US teammate Wil London.

The women’s 100m hurdles boasts one of the most competitive fields of the meeting.

Olympic champion Jasmine Camacho-Quinn takes on 2015 world champion Danielle Williams, Olympic bronze medallist Megan Tapper, and USA’s Tonea Marshall.

Camacho-Quinn opened her season with a windy 12.29 and followed it with a 12.48 victory in Doha. Jamaican duo Williams and Tapper have identical season’s bests of 12.74, while Marshall ran 12.61 last month.

The men’s 110m hurdles, meanwhile, looks to be a showdown between NACAC champion Freddie Crittenden, who improved to 13.00 last year, and 2021 NCAA champion Robert Dunning, who recently clocked a PB of 13.09.

Jumps rivalries

Social media lit up in recent weeks with US long jumpers Tara Davis and Quanesha Burks both talking up their chances in a showdown.

They last squared off in Baton Rouge at the end of April in a competition with Davis won with a wind-assisted 7.05m, though Burks had the superior wind-legal jump (6.95m). One week later, Davis improved to a wind-legal 7.07m.

The duo will be in action in Devonshire and both will be highly motivated to perform well.

There will be a friendlier duel in the men’s triple jump between long-time rivals Christian Taylor and Will Claye. Global champions and 18-metre performers at their best, Taylor and Claye have had to contend with injury struggles in recent years, but the former collegiate teammates are both still competitive on the international stage.

Taylor opened his season with 16.89m – his best jump since 2020. Claye finished just one centimetre ahead of Taylor in that competition, then went on to jump a wind-assisted 17.13m in Jacksonville two weeks later.

There are strong match-ups in all of the women’s sprints.

In the 100m, Tamari Davis takes on world indoor medallists Mikiah Brisco and Marybeth Sant-Price, as well as European champion Gina Luckenkemper of Germany.

World 4x100m and 4x400m champion Abby Steiner goes in the 200m, having won her first two races this year at that distance. Anthonique Strachan of The Bahamas will be among her rivals.

And in the 400m, 2019 world 400m hurdles champion Dalilah Muhammad will drop the barriers in favour of the flat, where she’ll take on Charokee Young and Candice McLeod.