While Jamaica crashed out of the race for the 4x4 relay crown in London, the Caribbean is still poised to take two of the three medals on offer, at least, or at most break the dominance of the traditionally mighty USA, when nine counties take to the track for the final today.
With a severely weakened American team in contrast to other years in the lineup, the Bahamas and Trinidad & Tobago could make it one-two, and Cuba could also sneak in for the third spot.
Yesterday, the Bahamas ran into the final with a stalwart performance. The team of Ramon Miller, Michael Mathieu, Demetrius Pinder and veteran Chris Brown finished first in 2:58.87 – the fastest qualifying time – in a photo finish with the USA.
For the first time in 20 years, Trinidad and Tobago will compete in the 4x4 final, and the squad of Lalonde Gordon, Jarrin Solomon, Ade Alleyne-Forte and Deon Lendore are not satisfied with just participation; they believe they can win. Yesterday, the four men won the first heat in 3:00.38, a new national record, ahead of Great Britain (3:00.38) and Cuba (3:00.55). As quoted in the Trinidad Express newspaper, Alleyne-Forte noted that "They [USA] are most definitely vulnerable. We're like sharks in the water. We're smelling the blood and we're trying to go get it, trying to get our food. We need to eat too."
However, the USA should not be ruled out for gold as they are not known to go down without a fight. While the team’s top man has been out injured, one member of the US team was reported as running with “a broken leg” yesterday to get into the final. Today, the experienced Angelo Taylor will run in the final, and he is expected to make a big difference.
The full lineup is South Africa, Russia, Venezuela, Trinidad and Tobago, Great Britain, Bahamas, USA, Belgium and Cuba.