Thompson, Bledman, Cedenio sizzle in US

Richard “Torpedo” Thompson, Keston Bledman and Machel Cedenio recorded fast openers at meets in the United States, on Saturday.
Competing in the 100 metres dash for the first time this season, Thompson stopped the clock at 10.04 seconds for victory in section one at the Alumni Gold meet, in Louisiana.

With that clocking, Thompson shot into second spot on the 2015 world performance list, behind American Trayvon Bromell (10.02). Another Trinidad and Tobago athlete, Texas State University student Aaron George was seventh in section two and 14th overall in the Alumni Gold men’s 100m in a wind-assisted 10.64.

Thompson had a busy day at the Alumni Gold meet, finishing fifth in the 200m in a windy 21.01 seconds, and running the second leg for third-placed Tiger Olympians in the 4x100m relay. Thompson’s team clocked 40.03.

Steve Waithe was also in winners’ row in Louisiana. Appropriately, the T&T/Pennsylvania State University athlete struck gold in the LeJuan Simon men’s triple jump event with a wind-aided 15.73m effort. Waithe’s best legal jump in the competition was 15.45m.

Simon was a T&T athlete, the highpoint of his career coming in 2004 when he represented the country at the Athens Olympics. The former Louisiana State University (LSU) student died in 2008 at the age of 27 as a result of complications from primary pulmonary hypertension.

At the National Training Center (NTC) Pure Athletics Sprint Elite Meet 1, in Florida, Bledman bolted to victory in the men’s 100m dash in a windy 9.94 seconds. In the preliminary round, the T&T sprinter clocked a windy 9.97 in his first 100m race for 2015. He won the heat, advancing to the final as the fastest qualifier.

Cedenio was on fire in his 400m season-opener, the 2014 world junior champion winning the men’s one-lap race in a personal best 45.09 seconds—good enough for sixth spot on the 2015 world performance list.

Kelly-Ann Baptiste got home in a wind-assisted 22.91 seconds to bag bronze in the women’s 200m. And Wayne Davis II topped the men’s 110m hurdles “B” race in 13.66.

In Texas, Deon Lendore clocked 45.14 seconds to grab gold in the Michael Johnson Classic men’s 400m event. The Texas A&M University quartermiler is seventh on this year’s world performance list.

Another T&T athlete, Janeil Bellille finished eighth in the women’s 400m in 55.08.

At the Georgia Tech Invitational, Emanuel Mayers won the men’s 400m hurdles in 50.39 seconds, and Ade Alleyne-Forte was second in the men’s 400m “B” race in 47.59.