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Men’s 4×400 team resets day-old PH record, but misses medal

MANILA, Philippines, October 5 ------ It took the Philippine men’s 4×400m relay team just a day to reset the national record. Umajesty Williams, Michael del Prado, Joyme Sequita, and Frederick Ramirez ran a combined 3 minutes and 4.89 seconds in the 19th Asian Games final to smash the Philippine athletics record yet again. But the national mark was only good enough for fifth as India captured the 4x400m relay gold with a time of 3:01.58 at the Hangzhou Olympic Sports Centre Stadium in China. Qatar secured silver (3:02.05) and Sri Lanka (3:02.55) rounded out the podium finishers.

Just a day earlier, Williams, Del Prado, Sequita, and Ramirez shattered a 38-year-old national record by clocking 3:06.15 to top heat 2 and advance to the final round. The Philippine quartet erased the longstanding mark of 3:06.58 set in the 1985 Southeast Asian Games by Del Prado’s father and Philippine athletics icon Isidro del Prado, along with Marlon Pagalilavan, Romeo Gido, and Honesto Larce. Williams, the Filipino-American first runner, delivered the best performance for the reigning SEA Games champion with 43.21 seconds.

Final runner Del Prado registered the next best time (45.79), followed by Sequita (47.02) and Ramirez (48.87). While the Filipinos ruled the region last May, this time they placed behind SEA Games runner-up Thailand, which finished fourth with a time of 3:04.23. In the women’s side, the Philippine 4×400 team of Lauren Hoffman, Robyn Brown, Angel Frank and Maureen Maureen Schrijvers also finished fifth in the final with a 3:40.78 clocking. Bahrain, anchored by 400m hurdles champion Oluwakemi Mujidat Adekoya, bagged the gold (3:27.65), followed by India (3:27.85) and Sri Lanka (3:30.88).



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