Athletics

Blake back in form

Yohan Blake (AFP)
Yohan Blake (AFP)

Bahamas - Olympic silver medallist Yohan Blake made it a perfect trip to the inaugural IAAF World Relays as he anchored Jamaica to a triumphant run in the 4x100 metres relay on Sunday.

A night after leading a Jamaican team to a world record in the 4x200 relay, Blake brought his countrymen home in 37.77 seconds to top Trinidad and Tobago in the final race of the two-day programme.

"After our world and Olympic gold (in the 4x100), we wanted to confirm our number one position today," said Blake, who missed the world championships and much of last season with a hamstring injury.

"It feels great getting into championship mode ... I am back on track."

The Jamaicans were missing world record holder Usain Bolt, who has yet to run this year, and key relay member Michael Frater, but veterans Nesta Carter and Nickel Ashmeade and young Julian Forte had Blake in position for another winning romp.

"We have to work on some of the exchanges, but overall it went well," said Carter, who helped Jamaica win the world title last year.

Trinidad and Tobago were a well-beaten second in 38.04 with Britain third in 38.19.

Kenya's men delivered the day's only world record, shattering the global mark in the infrequently run 4x1500 relay.

With double world champion Asbel Kiprop on anchor, the men clocked 14:22.22 to erase a previous Kenyan team's 2009 record of 14:36.23.

Collins Cheboi, Silas Kiplagat and James Magut gave Kenya a comfortable lead and Kiprop anchored the final 1 500 metres to earn the Africans $100 000, including $50 000 for the win and another $50 000 for the record.

The Kenyan women were just as convincing on Saturday in taking down the women's world record in the event.

The US women had a perfect Sunday, grabbing all three of the relays they contested.

Strong performances by Sanya Richards-Ross and Natasha Hastings helped power the Americans to victory in the 4x400 in 3:21.73 ahead of second-placed Jamaica.

The American women also collected wins in the 4x800 (8:01.58) and 4x200 (1:29.45), topping Kenya in the longer relay and Britain in the sprint.

Jamaica could only finish third in the 4x200 even with Olympic and world champion Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce on anchor.

The Americans also won the men's 4x400 metres relay with world champion LaShawn Merritt grabbing the lead in the final 20 metres as the US edged host Bahamas in 2:57.25.

But disaster struck in the men's 4x100 as the US team were disqualified after a poor exchange in the rounds.

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