Athletics

'I am proud of myself!'

Javon Francis happy with performance at Senior National Championships

Saturday, June 29, 2019

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Former National 400m champion Javon Francis achieved his main objective of making the team to the World Championships in Doha, Qatar, later this year when he finished third in the 400m at the Jamaica Administrative Athletics Association (JAAA)/Supreme Ventures Limited National Championships on Sunday.

While finishing in the top three gives him a provisional space on the team, Francis has not yet met the qualification standard of 45.30s, but still has time to work on getting that particular mark.

Plagued with injuries over the last few years, which has seen him fail to progress in the event as many expected, the 24-year-old switched camps last year from the Akan Track Club to join the Texas-based outfit, Training Ground Elite Group.

Based on where he is at this stage of the season, the former Calabar standout was quite pleased with his performance at the championships.

“My performance tonight (Sunday) was great. I am proud of myself because last year was a lot of injuries and I went to the US to train, so it's going to be a great season for me.”

Running at “Trials” has helped him put a marker on his season and will help him plan and prepare for the next few months.

“This year I haven't run as many races, this is my third 400m for the season and now I see where I am at so I have to go back home, work on some more things and get in some races,” he disclosed to reporters on Sunday.

Francis seems to have a renewed sense of purpose and spoke glowingly about his new coach and type of support he is receiving in the US and though nowhere near his personal best of 44.50, the time run on Sunday was quite pleasing for the athlete.

“This 45.60 means a lot for me. My coach, Daryl Woodson, he is always pushing me in training and make sure I do the programme correctly, he is always there by my side and he always tells me that Javon one day you are gonna be a great quarter miler. So I am looking forward to lower my time.”

With things now seemingly falling into place, it was a case of job done for the optimistic Francis.

“I just came here to qualify for the team and go back home to train,” Francis concluded.

Meanwhile, the former Greater Portmore High School athlete Terry Thomas of Racers Track Club, who is a virtual unknown, finished second in the race in a new personal best of 45.47s, and he too will have to do some more work to make the qualifying mark for the World Championships.

The race winner Demish Gaye made the qualifying standard with a season's best 44.83s.

- Dwayne Richards


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