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Invitational might have cost Brown shot at 400m final

  • Chris Brown.

Guardian Sports Editor

Published: Aug 14, 2013

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MOSCOW, Russia – Bahamian national record holder in the men’s 400 meters (m) Chris ‘The Fireman’ Brown missed a very fast final in the event last night, for just the second time since 2005.

Although he ran a season’s best time, there is no doubt among Bahamians here that he could have gone a bit faster if not for the staging of the Chris Brown Bahamas Invitational (CBBI), in April. Brown himself hinted toward that after running in the semi-finals on Monday.

“Doing what I was able to do early in the season, and then to come here and compete wasn’t easy. It took away about a month and a half out of my training,” said Brown. “What happened is that it set me back quite a bit. Hopefully, I wouldn’t make as many trips back and forth next year.

“I was happy with the turnout and the support I got from the Bahamian people for the event. I have to thank all who assisted as well, particularly Grafton Ifill and Associates and Capital City Marketing.”

As a result of the inaugural CBBI, which required a lot of traveling to and from his home base in Atlanta, Georgia, Brown missed a lot of training time and got his season started late. Barring that, it’s very likely that he would have been in the men’s 400m final at these 14th International Association of Athletic Federations’ (IAAF) World Championships last night. The meet was historic and turned out to be truly successful, and whereas the plan is to continue with it, Brown said that it is possible he could consider doing things differently in 2014.

“As the host, the meet required a lot of my attention, but even after all of that, I’m pretty satisfied with the season that I had,” he said. “A lot of the guys out there were running season best times, and with me coming into it late in the season, I was just coming into form. I was just getting to where I need to be. Now, having this under my belt lets me know how to prepare going into next season and beyond.”

In last night’s blazing final, seven of the eight athletes ran under 45 seconds. American LaShawn Merritt reclaimed his world title from Kirani James, of Grenada, as he ran a new world-leading time of 43.74 seconds. That stunning time also tied a personal best for Merritt.

James faded down the stretch, finishing seventh, in 44.99 seconds. It was a 1-2 finish for the U.S. as Tony McQuay claimed the silver medal in a personal best time of 44.40 seconds, and last year’s Olympic silver medalist, Luguelin Santos of the Dominican Republic, settled for the bronze this time, in a season’s best time of 44.52 seconds.

As for Brown, he and the other quarter-milers on the team are now getting ready for the men’s 4x400m relay. The heats of the relay will be held on Thursday at 7:05 p.m. here in Moscow, 11:05 a.m. back in The Bahamas, and the final is set for 9:30 p.m. on Friday, 1:30 p.m. in The Bahamas.


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