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Felix clipped final hurdle and loses gold medal in Rio

28 July 2007

Dominican Republic’s 2004 Athens Olympic champion Felix Sanchez missed out on defending his 400-meter hurdles gold medal title at the Pan American Games on Friday after tripping over the final barrier and fell out of the medal placings.

Sanchez, defending the title he won in front of his home crowd in Santo Domingo in 2003, went into the final hurdle in front of Canada’s Adam Charles Kunkel, but clipped it and stumbled and finished fourth in 49.28.

Kunkel went on to win the race in 48.24 seconds, with Panama’s Bayano Kamani winning the silver in 48.70 and Laron Bennett of the United States taking the bronze in 49.07.

Sanchez, who became the Dominican Republic’s first Olympic gold medalist when he won in Athens, is one of the few world class athletes at the Pan American Games track and field event.

Meanwhile, Caribbean athletes dominated the 200m as former World Junior silver medallist Brendan Christian of Antigua won the men’s half-lap in 20.37 ahead of Jamaica’s Marvin Anderson (20.38) with American Rubin Williams taking third in 20.67.

In the women’s race Jamaica’s Sheri-Ann Brooks was chased down by Cuba’s Roxana Diaz, who clocked 22.90 to beat the Jamaican who posted 22.92.

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