The IAAF World Athletic Championships are almost upon us. Last time out in Berlin in 2009 Usain Bolt and company lit up the championships making them the most memorable in Jamaica’s track and field history. As a result expectations are high for this renewal in Daegu, South Korea where the weather has not been the best in the last week or so.

Despite the expectations, however, there are some realities we have to face with regards to what was accomplished in 2009 and what will be accomplished over the 10 days of the championships in 2011. Injuries and change of form will affect Jamaica’s output at these games and my predictions will reflect those realities.

So let’s begin.

These are my selected results.

MEN’S 100-metre dash – Usain Bolt, Asafa Powell, Yohan Blake. Bolt’s form has been in question all season. This has been due primarily to the fact that he has not been as dominant this season as we have seen him over the past two and a half seasons when he recorded the fastest times in history over the short sprints. But while Bolt is not at his best, he still knows how to win and that is why he will prevail over Powell who is perhaps in the form of his life and the talented and fast-rising Blake.

MEN’S 200 metres – ¬†Usain Bolt, Walter Dix, Christophe LeMaitre. The 200 metres has been poor this year with Bolt’s 19.86s being the fastest time in the world by far. As far as I am concerned Bolt has a lock on this event with the American Walter Dix and the Frenchman battling for the other two medals.

MEN’S 400 metres – Leshawn Merritt, Kirani James, Jermaine Gonzales. Merritt will defend his title simply because he is the only man in the field who has gone under 44 seconds and he has had 21 months to prepare. He will hit form after the rounds and win a close one over James and Gonzales who may have run out of time to prepare for those rounds following knee surgery that caused his early season preparation to be delayed by about four months.

MEN’S 110-metre hurdles – Dayron Robles, Liu Xiang, David Oliver. This race features the three fastest sprint hurdlers in history but Robles’ sublime hurdling skills and Xiang’s fluid style will overcome the powerful Oliver who has been fastest over last season. Dwight Thomas could get in if the big three mess up but only if he puts his perfect race together and gets close to 13-seconds flat.

MEN’s 400-metre hurdles – Angelo Taylor, Bershawn Jackson, Javier Culson. Taylor and Jackson always bring their ‘A’ game to championships and will out-work Culson in the finals. Jamaican prospects Leford Green and Isa Phillips should be in the finals with Green the most likely to medal given deliberate progression this season under the guidance of Lennox Graham who is hoping his young charge will be in the shape of his life for these championships. The lack of races since the national championships though could work against Green.

MEN’S 4×100 metre relay – Jamaica, USA, Trinidad. Once Jamaica gets the baton round the gold is theirs. Too much talent as compared to too little for the USA without Tyson Gay and Mike Rodgers for these championships.

MEN’S 4×400 – USA, Bahamas, Belgium. Jamaica does not have sufficient depth to medal in this event, especially with the talented Ricardo Chambers out with yet another injury. The team of Gonzales, Green and Hylton are a man short.

WOMEN’s 100 metres – Veronica Campbell Brown, Carmelita Jeter, Kelli-Ann Baptiste. Defending champion Shelly Ann Fraser Pryce could end up among the medals but as of now there are still too many questions about her conditioning for me to include her in the medals. However, if she comes out in good shape she will be contending for gold.

WOMEN’S 200 metres – Veronica Campbell Brown, Carmelita Jeter, Allyson Felix. The 400 metres will sap some of Felix’s leg power and it will cost her in the 200 metre finals where she will be up against two women who are much faster and who she will have to catch down the stretch.

WOMEN’s 400 metres – Amantle Montsho, Sanya Richards, Allyson Felix. Montsho is the woman to beat this season and her improved strength will be too much for the Americans down the stretch. Rosemarie Whyte (49.84 pb) will have to bring her ‘A’ game to be among the medals but I believe the quality of the top three will be too much to overcome. Shericka Williams has not shown the form that would give her supporters any confidence and she would have to come with her personal best 49.32 if she hopes she challenge for a medal.

WOMEN’S 100-metre hurdles – Sally Pearson, Kelly Wells, Danielle Carruthers. No defending champion Brigette Foster Hylton and no Deloreen Ennis London means no shot at a medal for Jamaica’s women.

WOMEN’S 400-metre hurdles - Kaliese Spencer, Lashinda Demus, Melaine Walker. No woman has ever defended her world title in this event and I expect this trend to continue. If there is any change in the order it would be Walker coming away with the silver because she is as tough as nails and if it comes down to guts she will get the better of Demus. After her impressive 52.79s in London, the fastest time in the world this year by more than half a second, the gold is Spencer’s to lose.

WOMEN’S 800 metres - Mariya Savinova, Jenny Meadows, Yuliya Rusanova. Kenia Sinclair will have to find a time close to 1:57.00 to come within sniffing distance. She would hope that her 1500 metre runs this season will allow her to get there. Caster Semenya, contrary to popular belief, is not playing possum and may not even make the finals.

WOMEN’S 4×100 - USA, Jamaica, Bahamas. USA is too strong for a Jamaican team that has too many questions surrounding Shelly Ann Fraser Pryce, Kerron Stewart and Sherone Simpson.

WOMEN’S 4x400m – USA, Jamaica, Russia. This will be a dog fight for the top three places but the Americans with Felix and Richards will be a little too strong for the Jamaicans and the Russians.

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  1. Billy Me says:

    These predictions are clearly not made by someone who follows track & field with a thorough understanding of the sport, it seems these predictions are headline track & field baased especially on popularity of athletes versus their true expectations. Otherwise is a rum smoker prediction especially when you see Van Zyl left out of the 400H predictions and really believing Felix will ever be beat by Jeter in a Worlds this is not a patty shop event, study the athletes and leave media opinionated popularity out when making predictions.

  2. Lorenzo says:

    I believe that Jermaine Gonzalez needs to find a new camp. With great respect for the Bertland CAmeron, I don’t think he is a good coach, because when he lost his 400m world championship tilte to the Americans his training regiment became very undiscipline, which resulted in many injuries.

    If Jermaine continue in that camp he will be saddled with injuries. “Mark My words fellas”


  3. Settler says:

    Well done and to Jamaica we will be better in London next year.Look out for Jura Levy in the 100 and 200 meters she will be a Star.

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3 comments so far
levyl Posted by: levyl August 24, 2011 at 8:31 am