Connaughton, Canadian relay team qualify for worlds

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Jared Connaughton

NASSAU, Bahamas — Canada’s men’s 4x100-metres team finished sixth at the first annual International Association of Athletics Federation World Relays on Sunday to qualify for the 2015 IAAF World Championships in Beijing.

The team of Gavin Smellie of Toronto, Dontae Richard-Kwok of Mississauga, Ont., Jared Connaughton of New Haven, P.E.I., and Justyn Warner of Markham, Ont., crossed the line in 38.55 seconds. They finished second in their heat in 38.70 to qualify for the final earlier in the day.

The top eight teams in the 4x100 and 4x400 events automatically qualify for next year’s championship.

“The main objective was to come out here and finish Top 8 and we achieved that which is great,” said Smellie. “A bit disappointed that we didn’t get on the podium, but it’s always a learning curve and we will perform a lot better at the Commonwealth Games.”

Added Richards-Kwok: “This event was a great experience. We came to secure our spot into Worlds next year and we were successful in doing so. We played it really safe, so I think as a result we didn’t do as well as we wanted to or could have.”

The women’s 4x100 relay team missed qualification but won Final B for ninth place overall. The team of Khamica Bingham of Caledon, Ont., Kimberly Hyacinthe of Lachenaie, Que., Toronto’s Crystal Emmanuel  and Shai-Anne Davis bettered their time from 43.69 in the heats to 43.33 for the win.

Both the men’s and women’s 4x400 relay teams advanced from Day 1 heats to the B Finals. The women’s team finished third, while the men placed sixth.

Organizations: International Association of Athletics Federation World Relays, Commonwealth Games, B Finals

Geographic location: Toronto, NASSAU, Bahamas Canada Mississauga New Haven Markham Caledon Lachenaie

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