Jamaica greats Lorraine Fenton and Shericka Williams praise Nikisha Pryce for record-breaking 400m run

By June 09, 2024
Nikisha Pryce leading the Arkansas quartet to a 'super sweep' in the finals of the 400m at the NCAA Division 1 Outdoor Track and Field Championships at Hayward Field in Eugene, Oregon on Saturday. Nikisha Pryce leading the Arkansas quartet to a 'super sweep' in the finals of the 400m at the NCAA Division 1 Outdoor Track and Field Championships at Hayward Field in Eugene, Oregon on Saturday.

Nikisha Pryce etched her name in history on Saturday by running an astounding 48.89 seconds in the 400m on the final day of the 2024 NCAA National Outdoor Championships at Hayward Field in Eugene, Oregon. In doing so, Pryce not only shattered the two-decade-old Jamaican national record held by Lorraine Fenton but also set a new collegiate record and the world-leading time for the year.

Pryce's performance was the highlight of an incredible day for the University of Arkansas, as she led a Razorback 'super sweep', with their athletes finishing in the top four positions to secure 29 critical points, propelling the team to the national women's title.

Fenton, the now former Jamaica national record holder whose 49.30 mark stood for over 20 years, expressed her joy at Pryce's achievement. "I’m happy for Nikisha. Twenty plus years is a long time for a record to stand. I wish her and other Jamaican 400m runners the very best,” Fenton said, acknowledging the monumental nature of Pryce's accomplishment.

Shericka Williams, who recently shared the second-fastest Jamaican 400m time with Pryce, was equally impressed. "Her performance was exceptional. She ran a well-distributed race; she was just floating down the track effortlessly. While watching the race I was watching the clock at 350m and she was still going strong, very impressive!" Williams noted.

Williams also offered advice to Pryce, emphasizing the importance of focus and hard work. "She just needs to focus on trials and then after just continue to train hard and get ready for the Olympics and remain focused on her goals," she advised.

Pryce attributed her record-breaking run to the meticulous guidance of her coach, Chris Johnson. "I did what my coach told me to do, execute the race properly and that's what I did," she said.

Coach Johnson, in his first year as Head Coach of the University of Arkansas Track Programme, has led the team to both NCAA Indoor and Outdoor national titles. He praised Pryce's exceptional talent and the collective effort of his team. "That's the goal. That's the Arkansas tradition so we're just trying to uphold the tradition. I was blessed with a great team and we have great coaches, great staff and everybody is invested so we just want to be able to represent the Hogs really well. Go out and compete to the best of our ability. Winning is the goal and we were able to get it done and obviously we have some special ladies and this young lady broke the Jamaican national record, the collegiate national record and is the fastest time in the world and we are just elated by it," Johnson said.

Pryce and her teammates capped off a phenomenal championship by obliterating the NCAA record in the 4x400m relay. The quartet of Pryce, Kaylyn Brown, Amber Anning, and Rosey Effiong ran an incredible 3:17.96, smashing their own record by almost four seconds and winning by a significant margin ahead of Tennessee (3:23.32) and Texas (3:23.68).

Nikisha Pryce's historic run marks a new era for Jamaican 400m runners, with her performance setting a new benchmark and inspiring the next generation of athletes to reach even greater heights.

 

 

Leighton Levy

Leighton Levy is a journalist with 28 years’ experience covering crime, entertainment, and sports. He joined the staff at SportsMax.TV as a content editor two years ago and is enjoying the experience of developing sports content and new ideas. At SportsMax.tv he is pursuing his true passion - sports.

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