Three Nigerian athletes were in action at the American Track League I, the first leg of the World Indoor Tour in Fayetteville (AR), all churning out very impressive performances in their events.
Blessing Okagbare who hadn’t competed indoors since she last won the NCAA 60m title in 2010, opened up her season, racing to a Personal Best (PB) of 7.17s to win the race.
She got a rebound over Jamaica’s Christania Williams who had edged her out in qualification, with the latter returning 7.18s, same as she did in the heats for 2nd place overall.
Meanwhile, Kayla White pipped Morolake Akinosun over the finish for 3rd as they both were timed 7.20s, a PB for the latter.
On to the men’s 60m, Divine Oduduru after winning his heat in 6.70s, clocked a Season’s Best (SB) of 6.65s to finish 2nd to Trayvon Bromell who powered to a blistering World Lead (WL) of 6.48s for a thorough win. Andre Ewers also in his opener, got 3rd in 6.67s.
Chukwuebuka Enekwechi also got his 2021 campaign going as he hurled an SB of 20.65m to finish 2nd in the men’s Shot Put.
The event was won by Ryan Crouser who pulled an astonishing indoor World Record (WR) of 22.82m, breaking the previous record of 22.60m that had been set by Randy Barnes since 1989. Payton Otterdahl was 3rd with 20.60m.
Some Nigerian athletes also competed on the collegiate scene, starting off with Cloud County Sophomore, Mercy Ntia-Obong who raced to a Season’s Best of 7.49s to win the women’s 60m at the All Kansas Invite.
She also dominated the 200m in similar manner as she clocked 24.14s (SB) for a thorough win over the rest of the field.
At the Samford January Open in Birmingham (AL), Oritsemeyiwa Ineh took to the track for the first time in the men’s 60m, racing to an impressive PB of 6.79s to take the win. In one of his trademark events, the Long Jump, he also took the win with an SB of 7.49m from R’Lazon Brumfield (7.38) and Morgan Dashaun (7.35).
Also competing at that meet was Aniekeme Etim who kicked off her season, clutching the women’s 60m in an SB of 7.52s.
Isaac Odugbesan won the men’s Shot Put at the Carolina Challenge in Columbia, throwing a last round 18.46m.