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Tyrone claims podium finish in Tokyo

Bermuda’s Tyrone Smith grabbed a podium place in the men’s long jump at the IAAF Seiko Golden Grand Prix in Tokyo, Japan at the weekend.

Smith, vying to repeat his performance of 2011 when he set the record, posted a best leap of 7.61 metres, 38 centimetres short of the eventual winner to claim third.

The 28-year-old currently holds the record at the competition, leaping 8.09 metres two years ago.

Mauro Vinicius da Silva from Brazil won the event with a best leap of 7.99m, while Zack Visser from South Africa finished second (7.84m).

“I’ll take a top three given the elements,” he said on a recent Twitter post. “Not a great distance but what are you going to do with a -3mph headwind coming at you.”

The Seiko Golden Grand Prix has replaced the Osaka Grand Prix as the major athletics meet in Japan.

It was a promising result for the current Male Athlete of the Year after undergoing PRP injections for his knee earlier this year to speed up his recovery process from an injury-plagued 2012 season.

He is also working out a new approach and take-off this season that seems to be paying immediate dividends.

“Got my turnover on point, this new 22 stride approach is crazy fast!” he added on Twitter.

The surprise performance was Yoshihide Kiryu, a 17-year-old Japanese sprinter, who finished third in 10.40 seconds in the 100 metres.

Mike Rodgers of the United States won the race in 10.19 seconds to finish ahead of Derrick Atkins of the Bahamas, who finished in 10.24.

Elsewhere over the weekend, Bermuda’s Dage Minors and his St Johnsbury Academy team-mates finished third at a regional meet.

Minors, who won the 800 metres in a meet record 1:57.94, anchored the 4x400 relay team that also set a meet and school record (3:28.84).

“Dage continues to have a great season in his final year at St Johnsbury Academy,” said Bermuda National Athletics Association (BNAA) president Donna Watson. “Breaking any record always means the athlete has had a great meet, and I have no doubt Dage will continue to perform well right to the end of his time there.

“As he prepares to move to university I think he is positioning himself in a good position in preparation for what is ahead of him in September.

“With Tyrone starting off his season placing third with a leap of 7.61 metres, that is a good start for him.

“Tyrone's goal for this year is to qualify for the IAAF World Championships and will need to get to the 8.10 metres performance but I’m sure this gave him an indication of where he is and what he needs to do to reach that standard.”

Akeila Richardson also had a pleasing weekend, finishing second in the women’s triple jump for Kennesaw State University with a jump of 11.36 metres.

Richardson’ s leap saw her claim the silver medal behind team-mate Abby Lazard who leaped 11.67m.

Tyrone Smith has made a strong start to the season.

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Published May 08, 2013 at 3:02 pm (Updated May 08, 2013 at 3:02 pm)

Tyrone claims podium finish in Tokyo

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