Florida prep Jamal Walton -- a rising 18-year-old senior at Miramar High and athlete for the Cayman Islands -- ran well in his first appearance at the IAAF World Championships, though missed the finals of the 400m after finishing fourth in London on Tuesday in the semifinals in 45.16 seconds, which was just outside the qualifying standards.
His quarterfinal time of 45.05 seconds, however, was the second fastest performance of his career -- it came off the heels of his Pan American Junior Championship win and PR of 44.99, which was also a junior class record -- and was the 10th fastest in an overall field of 49.
"It is a great experience, but there's not too much that can prepare you for this environment if you've never ran at this level," Walton said. "I just kept my emotions together and focused on running well."
Walton, who won the Brooks PR Invitational in a meet record time of 46.04, now holds the junior class record (44.99) and three of the top eight high school 400m efforts of all-time -- all accomplished over a 15-day span. He ran sub-46 just twice this spring, but still earned his first Florida High School Athletic Association championship at the distance in 46.11.
Walton qualified for the semifinals on Tuesday, where he just missed the cut of 44.74 seconds. Americans Lashawn Merritt (45.52), Wil London (45.12), and Gil Roberts (44.84) also missed the final.
The finals of IAAF World Championships 400m final will take place on Tuesday.
World Championships Section 5 Prelims
|1||708||Isaac MAKWALA||BOT||44.55 Q||0.232|
|2||1426||LaShawn MERRITT||USA||45.00 Q||0.219|
|3||766||Jamal WALTON||CAY||45.05 Q||0.153|
|4||871||Óscar HUSILLOS||ESP||45.22 q PB||0.167|
World Championships Section 3 Semifinals
|1||708||Isaac MAKWALA||BOT||44.30 Q||0.248|
|2||1084||Demish GAYE||JAM||44.55 Q PB||0.157|
World Championships 400m Final Startlist
|ORDER / LANE||BIB||ATHLETE||COUNTRY||SB 2017||PB|
|6||1282||Wayde VAN NIEKERK||RSA||43.62||43.03|