Benjamin: World Record Not My Immediate Focus

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By Neto Baptiste

USA’s Rai Benjamin says he wants to be the best 400 meters hurdler in the world, but breaking the long-standing record of 46.78 by American Kevin young is currently not at the top of his agenda.

Speaking on the Good Morning Jojo Sports Show on Thursday, Benjamin said his focus right now is to just win medals.

“I want to be one of the best there is in the world so it does definitely motivate me, but like I have been saying all week to the media, when it comes to these championships, I am not too caught up with breaking records. No one will remember what time I ran in the final on Monday, but they remember who won, so it doesn’t really matter in these types of settings if you break a world record or not, it’s just about getting a gold,” he said.

Benjamin, who is the son of former national and West Indies fast bowler, Winston Benjamin and Gale Mason, captured silver at the ongoing IAAF World Championships in Doha, when he clocked 47.66 seconds.

The athlete, who had represented Antigua and Barbuda at a World Youth Championships in 2013, said he needs to perfect his technique going forward.

“I think technically, I am not very sound because I am not much of a hurdler, but I am more of a flat runner so although I bring that flat speed dynamic, I think I suffer a lot technically although I’ve gotten a lot better over the past few years, I think I still do suffer a lot technically in the race and that is something I have to work on this off-season,” he said. Benjamin, in 2018, opted to represent the USA, requesting a transfer of allegiance from Antigua and Barbuda. The athlete has always maintained his desire to represent the USA.

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