Report16 Apr 2022

US quartet breaks distance medley relay world record in Boston


Elle Purrier St Pierre in action in Boston (© Kevin Morris)

Heather MacLean, Kendall Ellis, Roisin Willis, and Elle Purrier St Pierre teamed up at an indoor meeting in Boston to break the distance medley relay world record* with 10:33.85.

The distance medley relay – which comprises legs of 1200m, 400m, 800m and 1600m – is only a world record discipline outdoors, but as their time bettered the outdoor mark of 10:36.50, then it becomes an outright world record.

MacLean, the US indoor 1500m champion, got the team off to a strong start with a 3:14.92 leg, more than a second up on the pace needed to break the world indoor best. Ellis – a last-minute replacement for Olympic 400m hurdles champion Sydney McLaughlin – then produced a 52.04 split to keep the team on track.

Willis, who is still just 17 years of age, covered the 800m section in 2:03.29 before handing over to world indoor 3000m silver medallist Purrier St Pierre, who produced a stunning final leg of 4:23.60 to bring the team home in 10:33.85.

*Subject to the usual ratification procedure


Camacho-Quinn and Ofili set world-leading marks in Gainesville

Olympic 100m hurdles champion Jasmine Camacho-Quinn and world U20 200m bronze medallist Favour Ofili were among several athletes to set world-leading marks at the Tom Jones Invitational in Gainesville, Florida, on Friday (15) and Saturday (16).

Camacho-Quinn, who last week won at the World Athletics Continental Tour Gold meeting in Bermuda, was this time met with much kinder conditions. Pushed by world champion Nia Ali, Camacho-Quinn won in 12.39 (-0.1m/s) as Ali finished second in 12.59, the equal eighth-fastest time of her career – notable, as this was just her second race since returning from a maternity break.

NCAA indoor champion Grace Stark, still just 20 years old, won the collegiate race in a PB of 12.58 (1.9m/s).

Nineteen-year-old Ofili, who last week set a 100m PB of 11.00, smashed her 200m best when winning in Gainesville with 21.96 (1.3m/s). Her time also broke the Nigerian record.

One week after smashing her 400m PB with 50.00, 21-year-old Jamaican Charokee Young reduced it further in Gainesville with a world-leading 49.87. In the invitational race just moments later, two-time Olympic champion Shaunae Miller-Uibo got her outdoor campaign underway with a 49.91 victory.

All-round sprints and jumps talent Matthew Boling broke the 10-second barrier for the first time in his career, winning the collegiate 100m race in 9.98 (1.6m/s).

The fastest of the invitational races was held into a -0.1m/s headwind, but it did little to slow down Erriyon Knighton as the 18-year-old won in a PB of 10.04 from world 200m champion Noah Lyles (10.05) and Britain’s Nethaneel Mitchell-Blake (10.19). One of the other heats was won by world 110m hurdles champion Grant Holloway in a PB of 10.21.

Shania Collins (10.98) and NCAA indoor 60m champion Melissa Jefferson (11.00) won the women’s invitational and collegiate races respectively. Collins’ mark was an equal PB, while Jefferson set a big lifetime best.

World indoor 400m champion Jereem Richards won the 200m in 20.12 (1.5m/s). 2018 world U20 silver medallist Charlie Dobson won the other heat in a big PB of 20.19.

Elsewhere, Trey Cunningham dominated the 110m hurdles, winning his heat in 13.22 and the final in 13.38. Matt Hudson-Smith took the men’s 400m in 44.82, and Quincy Hall won the 400m hurdles in 48.55.

Ayden Owens produced the standout performance on the opening days of the Mt SAC Relays in Walnut, smashing his own Puerto Rican decathlon record with a score of 8528.

The 21-year-old set PBs of 10.27 in the 100m, 14.89m in the shot put and 46.12 in the 400m, before ending his competition with a sensational 4:13.17 run in the 1500m. His winning score of 8528 added 63 points to the US collegiate record that was previously owned by two-time world champion Trey Hardee.