MONTEGO BAY, St James — Jamaica's Rusheen McDonald ran a world-leading and meeting record 31.97 seconds in the rarely-run 300m race at the final IAAF World Challenge meeting of the season, held in Rietti, Italy, yesterday, to highlight a good day for Jamaicans, who won four of the six events in which they participated.
McDonald, a member of the Jamaican silver medal-winning men's 4x400m relay team at the recent IAAF World Championships in Moscow, Russia, who was running the distance competitively for the first time, broke the 34-year-old record of 32.23 seconds set by Italian great Pietro Mennea, who died earlier this year.
The meet, in its 43rd staging, was held in honour of the late Mennea, who won the 200m gold medal at the 1980 Moscow Olympics, and held the 200m world record for nearly 20 years, also saw three other wins by Jamaicans, as Carrie Russell ran a personal best 22.62 seconds to win the women's 200m; Rasheed Dwyer won the men's 200m, and Stephenie-Ann McPherson won the 400m.
McDonald beat two Italians to the line, as Diego Marani was second in 32.85 seconds, and Lorenzo Valentini third in 33.18 seconds.
Russell, who was part of the Jamaican gold-medal winning 4x100m team that set a new national record 41.29 seconds at the World Championships in Moscow, Russia, continued her good second half of the season by winning in 22.62 seconds (-0.2m/s), beating her previous best of 23.93 seconds, as another Jamaican, Aleen Bailey, was fourth in 23.45 seconds. Great Britain's Margaret Adeoye (22.88 seconds) was second, and Ukraine's Viktorya Pyatachenko took third with 23.23 seconds.
Dwyer clocked 20.30 seconds (0.2m/s) to edge Ukraine's Serhiy Smelyk (20.39 seconds) and Great Britain's Christopher Clarke (20.44 seconds).
McPherson, who was fourth in the women's 400m at the World Championships, led a Jamaica first-and-second finish in the one-lap race, as she clocked 50.00 seconds, with Keliese Spencer running a personal best 50.19 seconds for second, and Christine Day finishing fourth in 51.78 seconds, behind France's Floria Guei's (51.70 seconds).
There were second-placed finishes for sprint hurdler Andrea Bliss and shot-putter O'Dayne Richards.
Bliss ran 12.93 seconds (0.5m/s wind) to finish behind Australia's Sally Pearson (12.64 seconds), both well clear of Russia's Yuliya Kondakova's 13.03 seconds.
Richards' 20.10m was good for second behind Poland's Tomasz Majewski's winning throw of 20.30m in the shot put.
Julian Forte did not show for the men's 100m that was won by American Walter Dix in 9.99 seconds (0.7m/s), followed by Dwain Chambers (10.09 seconds) and Ryan Bailey (10.10 seconds).