Jamaica's Fedrick Dacres mined gold and created history yesterday inside Spain's Montjuic Olympic Stadium as he won the country's first-ever discus gold medal at an IAAF World Junior Championships and first gold medal of this, the 14th staging.
Going into the championships, Dacres predicted that he would need to better his previous personal best of 61.55 metres to win a medal, and he did just that. He hurled the discus 62.80 metres on his second attempt - a distance good enough to beat Poland's Wojciech Praczyk, who threw 62.75 metres for silver with his final attempt. The bronze medal was captured by South Africa's Gerhard de Beer (61.57m).
The 18-year-old Dacres already held the distinction of being the first Jamaican to win a discus gold medal at an IAAF athletics championship following his victory at last year's IAAF World Youth Championships held in Lille, France.
"I feel really great ... . I came here kind of off, but I pulled off a big PB (personal best), and everything just worked out in my favour," Dacres said. "It feels great to know I have two in a row - World Youth and now World Juniors," he added.At the end of yesterday's third day, Jamaica was sixth on the medal table with one gold and one bronze medal following Odean Skeen's third in the 100m final on Wednesday.
Javon Francis, who was a surprise winner of his 400m semi-final, could not reproduce his heroics in the final and finished ninth. World number two ranked junior Julian Forte enters today's 200m final set for 2:30 p.m. (Jamaica time) with the fastest qualifying time of 20.83 seconds (-2.8 m/s) which he did to win the opening semi-final heat.
Jamaica's juniors, who will be represented in five finals on today's fourth day, could again hear the country's national anthem in this large stadium.