DAEGU, Korea - Six-time NJCAA champion and 400-meter school record holder Rondell Bartholomew finished sixth place in the 400-meter dash final this morning at the IAAF World Championships in Korea.
According to SPC associate head track and field coach Blaine Wiley, who is also in Korea, Bartholomew is disappointed to have finished outside the medals.
"He pressed early and locked up," said Wiley. "However, it has been an extremely long season and sixth in a World Championship final is nothing to hang your head about. He has gained valuable experience and has a bright career to look forward to. I am very proud, as he has represented his country and South Plains College with dignity."
Bartholomew dug himself an early hole as he was very slow out of the blocks. His reaction time of .314 seconds was by far the slowest of the field. He quickly regained his composure and began making up the stagger on Jermaine Gonzales, who was running out of lane three, as the field made their way down the backstretch.
Bartholomew appeared to shift into another gear about midway around the final curve and was slightly behind eventual Silver medalist LaShawn Merritt as the athletes entered the final straightaway.
But as Wiley alluded to, Bartholomew visibly tightened up over the final meters and he settled for sixth place with a finishing time of 45.45 seconds.
Bartholomew is scheduled to race again September 8 in Zurich, Switzerland and possibly again on September 16 in Brussels to wrap up the year.In earlier action, former SPC Texan Isa Phillips failed to advance to the finals of the 400 meter hurdles when he finished fourth in the second-of-three sections with a time of 49.16 seconds for the tenth fastest time of the field.
South Plains is still well represented at the IAAF World Championships, which continues until September 4. Jura Levy, who advanced to the semi-final of the women's 100 meters, will likely run as a member of Jamaica's 4x100 meter relay. Janelle Redhead (Grenada) will run the women's 200 M heats. Calvin Dascent (Virgin Islands) will compete in the men's 200, while Latoy Williams and Andrae Williams will be members of the Bahamiam 4x400 meter relay team.