Broadbell - third sub-13 Jamaican
When Rasheed Broadbell beat two-time world 100 metres hurdles champion Grant Holloway in Lausanne, Switzerland, last week, he did more than just set a personal best with his winning time of 12.99 seconds. He joined Olympic gold medallists Omar...
When Rasheed Broadbell beat two-time world 100 metres hurdles champion Grant Holloway in Lausanne, Switzerland, last week, he did more than just set a personal best with his winning time of 12.99 seconds. He joined Olympic gold medallists Omar McLeod and Hansle Parchment as the only Jamaicans under the 13-second barrier. They both are champions, and Broadbell may be next.
Eliminated in the semi-finals at the World Championships in Eugene, Oregon, this past July, the tall 22 year-old bounced back by winning at the Commonwealth Games and then with victories at the István Gyulai Memorial in Hungary and in Lausanne. At the Games, he lowered his personal best from 13.10 to 13.08, and in Lausanne he broke through the 13-second barrier.
Last year, the former St Jago High School standout presented his credentials to the world with times of 13.15 and 13.10 seconds. He looked set to challenge for a place on the Jamaican team to Tokyo when a leg injury left him applying for a medical waiver from the Nationals. When he recovered, he could only manage 13.58 seconds.
These dizzy heights may have seemed distant on April 23, when Broadbell opened his season with a time of 13.31 seconds, behind Parchment at the National Stadium.
“It feels great to be competing again since my injury just a week before Trials. I haven’t been doing so well since then, but now, we should have a good season, hopefully,” he said then.
The ‘we’ he speaks of is Reynaldo Walcott, coach of the Elite Performance club he joined after leaving the MVP Track Club.
Asked to assess his fitness after the race, he enthused, “Great shape, great. We just continue and just build, and just get better and better.” His hopes were realised as he finished second to Parchment at the National Championships, and has been the best Jamaican in the event since Eugene.
Broadbell’s ascent wouldn’t have surprised MVP president Bruce James, who noted the nation’s growing power last December.
“Jamaica has an abundance of riches in the men’s 110-metre hurdles. It is historic, in my opinion, to have the six fastest Jamaican men ever in the event all still actively competing,” James said last December.
Listed by personal-best times last year - Omar McLeod, Parchment, Ronald Levy, Broadbell, Damion Thomas and Andrew Riley, with benchmark clockings of 12.90, 12.94, 13.05, 13.10, 13.11 and 13.14 seconds, respectively.
Riley, who preceded Levy and Broadbell as Commonwealth champion, retired after the 2021 season.
“In 2021, we saw that it was the only event that the Jamaican men were able to earn a medal in at the Olympic Games and actually ended up earning two medals in it, which is also significant,” James noted of the one-three Olympic finish by Parchment and Levy in Tokyo this year.
At the time, James pinpointed Broadbell, the youngest in that group of six, as one with “great upside”.