Costa Rican sprinter Nery Brenes continued his recent run of international track success last weekend, taking gold in the 4×400 meter relay at the Continental Cup in Split, Croatia. Brenes has won four gold medals in the last six weeks.
On Sunday, Brenes ran the first leg of the relay for the Americas team, which included U.S. runners Bershawn Jackson and Greg Nixon, as well as Jamaican Ricardo Chambers. Running against teams from Africa, Asia and the Pacific, and Europe, Brenes was pitted in the first leg of the relay against British runner Michael Bingham, who has the fastest recorded 400-meter time in Europe this year. After falling behind Bingham during the first 200 meters, Brenes caught and passed Bingham in the final 200 meters, handing the baton off to Jackson in first place. Brenes’ 400-meter leg was clocked at 45.30 seconds.
In the second leg, Jackson fell behind Belgian runner Kevin Borlée, but Nixon regained the lead in the third leg and Chambers sealed the win with a blurring final lap. The Americas’ time of 2 minutes, 59 seconds broke the competition’s previous record in the 4×400 relay of 2:59:12.
Since winning Costa Rica’s only gold medal at the Central American and Caribbean Games in the 400-meter run in July, Brenes went on to win gold in the 400-meter run at the Diamond League competition in Brussels, Belgium in August, and at an international competition in Zagreb, Croatia on Sept. 1. Brenes also won silver in the same race at an event in Berlin, Germany on Aug. 22.
Brenes, who competed in the 400-meter race at the 2008 Olympics in Beijing, China, will run again in a competition in Milan, Italy on Sept. 9 and in Kawasaki, Japan on Sept. 17.