My, what an impressive baton you have there. Shawn Crawford on the left and Darvis Patton on the right, both looking mighty fit, at the Penn Relays. Many of the nation's—and the world's—best track and field athletes were at the 115the Penn Relays at the University of Pennsylvania over the weekend.
USA swept the men’s and women’s 4 x 100m and 4 x 400m relays, going a long ways toward erasing the embarrassment and disappointment of the Beijing Olympics where both teams dropped the baton.
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The USA teams swept the men’s and women’s 4 x 100m and 4 x 400m relays in the featured USA vs. The World competitions. Leading the way was LaShawn Merritt, the Virginian sprinter who won two gold medals in Beijing. Merritt (44.26) helped the USA Red Team of Olympians Kerron Clement (44.70), Angelo Taylor (44.60) and David Neville (45.27) easily win the men’s 4x400m in 2:59.78. Jamaica finished fourth almost three seconds behind.
Merritt is seen above when he crossed the finish line ahead of the Bahamas' Christopher Brown, left, and USA's Darold Williamson. Some 49,000 people were at Franklin Field to witness history and Merritt told the Philadelphia Inquirer: "The crowd is amazing, especially the people that are yelling at you just as you're about to start. The atmosphere is crazy."
In the men’s 4 x 100m, USA notched a 1-2 finish with a Blue team of Rod 2.0 faves Walter Dix, Travis Padgett, Shawn Crawford and Darvis Patton. Blue beat the Red team of Terrence Trammell, Mark Jelks, Ivory Williams and Mike Rodgers, 37.92 to 38.36 sec. The IAAF reports Patton "gestured to the USA letters across the chest with his right hand" after crossing the line.
That would be Darvis Patton below.
NBC Sports reports: "When the American’s stepped onto the track at Franklin Field for the USA vs. the World 4x100m races at the 115th Penn Relay Carnival and were greeted by a crowd of 47,904 clad mostly in yellow and green and feverishly waving Jamaican flags, it was more motivation than this group needed. 'This is American soil," Crawford, above, said. 'I felt like it was war. We can't let anybody come in here and take the victory from us. It's not a revenge thing, but you’ve gotta win on your home turf.' "
All in all, a good weekend for Team USA and the men and women of track and field.