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  • Spotlight on Sprinters in Lima


    (ATR) The men's and women's finals of one of the signature events of any athletics meet highlighted day two at the VIDENA in Lima on Wednesday.

    Michael Rodgers celebrates winning 100m (Lima 2019)
    Elaine Thompson of Jamaica and Michael Rodgers of the USA took home the gold in their respective 100m races in the afternoon.

    For Rodgers, it was his first outdoor individual gold medal and the sixth time his country has won the 100m in the Pan Ams, tying Cuba for that honor.

    “Fortunately I won the race very comfortably, got my first Pan Am medal at my first Pan Ams and it was gold. It was very sweet and I'm very, very happy," describes Rodgers.

    Rodgers' time of 10.09 did not come close to the Pan Am record of 10.00. The Brazilian Paulo Camilo de Oliveira won silver and Cejhae Greene of Antigua and Barbuda the bronze. 

    “I’m happy about the result, it was a good race. When you start from behind it's difficult to catch up, but I’m happy with the result,” said de Oliveira.

    Thompson, the Rio 2016 champion in the 100m, won the gold in her Pan Am debut with a time of 11.18. Trinidad and Tobago’s Michelle-Lee Ahye took silver while the podium was completed by Vitoria Silva of Brazil.

    Darlan Romani of Brazil sets Pan Am record in shot put. (Lima 2019)
    Shelly Ann Fraser-Pryce of Jamaica will run the 200m semifinal on Thursday. Or at least that's the plan.

    The highlight of the evening was the Pan Am record set by Darlan Romani in the men's shot put. The Brazilian's mark of 22.07 meters broke the record of 21.69 meters set by O’Dayne Richards of Jamaica in Toronto four years ago.

    Jordan Geist (USA) and Uziel Muñoz (Mexico) completed the podium, but their best efforts were almost two meters less than the new champion. 

    For the long jump men’s final, the Cuban Juan Manuel Echevarria Laflé won the gold medal with a jump of 8.27 meters with Tajay Gayle (Jamaica) and Emiliano Lasa Sánchez (Uruguay) completing the podium.
    Natoya Goule (Jamaica) won her country's first gold medal in the 800m with a time of 2.01.26, 3 seconds above the Pan Am record.  She was followed by Rose Almanza (Cuba) and Deborah Rodríguez (Uruguay), who contributed with the 8th medal for her country in athletics at Pan Ams.

    “It wasn't the best time but I'm still rejoicing because I'm the first Jamaican to win a gold medal at the Pan Am Games, so I'm really excited about that”, said Goule.
    Finally, Damian Warner of Canada defended his title in the decathlon. He won with a total of 8513 points, well clear of Lindon Victor of Grenada (8240) and Pierce Lepage of Canada (8161). Warner, who also won bronze at Rio 2016 and silver at last year's World Indoor Championships,  was second in the 1500m behind Leonel Suárez of Cuba in the last event of the night.

    Written and reported by Olivia Diaz Ugalde in Lima.

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