April 22nd, 2024

Canada’s Morales Williams denied world record in indoor 400 due to technicality

By The Canadian Press on February 28, 2024.

Canadian Christopher Morales Williams poses for a photo next to his result during the NCAA Southeastern Conference indoor championships, in Fayetteville, Ark., in a Sunday, Feb. 25, 2024, handout photo. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO-University of Georgia, Wesley Hitt, *MANDATORY CREDIT*

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – Canadian sprinter Christopher Morales Williams is the all-time fastest runner in the indoor men’s 400 metres – but not an official world record-holder – due to a technicality beyond his control.

The 19-year-old University of Georgia sophomore ran a time of 44.49 seconds at the Randal Tyson Track Center on Saturday to win the NCAA Southeastern Conference indoor championships.

However, the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association, in a post on social media, said the mark can’t be ratified due to an issue with the starting blocks.

According to a report on the university’s website, World Athletics advised the school’s track and field director that the time will not be considered a world record because a false start detection system was not used at the competition.

Messages left with World Athletics and Athletics Canada were not immediately returned.

The previous world record of 44.57 from American Kerron Clement – set on the same track in 2005 – will stand.

“It doesn’t change the fact that I still ran the time,” Morales Williams told the school’s website. “It’s still the fastest time in the world, so it really doesn’t bother me at all. It’s not ratified, but it’s still there.

“It really doesn’t make too much of a difference. It doesn’t bother me.”

Morales Williams, a native of Vaughan, Ont., already owned the Canadian indoor 400 record with a time of 45.39 on Feb. 9 at the Clemson Tiger Paw Invitational.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Feb. 28, 2024.

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