Four former Hawks competing for Bahamas in BerlinOnce again, former Dickinson State track athletes from the Bahamas are preparing to compete on their grandest stage in their sport.
By: Dustin Monke, The Dickinson Press
Once again, former Dickinson State track athletes from the Bahamas are preparing to compete on their grandest stage in their sport.
Four former Blue Hawks are competing at the IAAF World Athletics Championships, which begin Saturday at Olympic Stadium in Berlin and lasts nine days before wrapping up on Sunday, Aug. 23.
Former DSU standouts Derrick Atkins, Trevor Barry and Adrian Griffith, Ramon Miller are competing at the biennial meet that brings together the world’s top athletes.
It’s enough to make DSU track and field coach Pete Stanton smile.
“What an exciting thing for us to have four of our former athletes compete in the World Championships,” Stanton exclaimed.
Stanton said he’s extremely excited to watch Miller, a nine-time NAIA national champion who is still a DSU student and will return to training at the university when he is through competing. Miller still plans to graduate from DSU next spring.
“For me, it’s a special thing with Ramon because I’m still coaching him,” Stanton said. “We’ve been going over our workouts all summer. We’ve been corresponding weekly to make sure he’s ready for Berlin.”
Miller, one year removed from winning an Olympic silver medal as a member of the Bahamas 1,600-meter relay team, is competing in both the relay and the open 400. He has the third-fastest time in the event amongst his countrymen and isn’t expected to be an alternate like he was in Beijing, where he ran in the semifinals.
It is the 22-year-old Miller’s first turn at the World Championships while Atkins is making his third trip.
Atkins broke into the international spotlight two years ago at the World Championships in Osaka, Japan, after a surprising silver-medal finish in the 100 meters where he ran a career-best time of 9.91 seconds. He took second to American Tyson Gay.
This season, Atkins’ best finish was a 10.17 at Berkeley, Calif. The 25-year-old is also running the 200, where he clocked a career-best 20.35-second finish this season.
Running with Atkins in the 100 is Griffith, the DSU school record holder in the event. Griffith, 24, has a 10.27 entry time and finished second to Atkins at the Bahamas National Games.
Barry, a 26-year-old who won seven NAIA national titles and was a six-time runner-up, is competing in the high jump after winning the Bahamas national championships with a leap of 7 feet, 3 inches.
Stanton said he’s never disappointed with how well the athletes do on the World Championship stage.
He’s just pleased to seem them have the experience.
“It’s just an honor to have been around those guys and to see our athletes from Dickinson State at the world level, and having a chance to represent their country is just a really neat thing,” Stanton said.
All four athletes are in Berlin and were not available for comment.