Sanaa Rae Morris sprints to 400m personal best
Sanaa Rae Morris admits her successful debut competing for IMG Academy at the Bolles Last Chance Invite in Jacksonville, Florida, this month exceeded her expectations.
The sprinter broke away and then held off the chasing pack heading down the final stretch to claim the gold medal in the girls 400 metres in a personal-best time of 57.28sec.
“I am pleased with my win,” Morris told The Royal Gazette.
“It was a close finish, but I was able to maintain my position in first and hold it until the end. I would say I did exceed expectations as I got a personal best in the Open 400.
“So far I have only split 56.5 in the relays. But I’m really looking forward to 56 in the Open 400m.”
Morris’s previous fastest time in the 400 metres was 58.03.
“Solid [Morris] keeps finding PRs we have been working more and more towards the 400m as the season progress,” Jean Carlos Arroyo, Morris’s coach at IMG Academy, said. “I am confident that she will run 56 low in the upcoming weeks.”
IMG Academy finished third overall in both the boys’ and girls’ divisions among the eight varsity teams represented at the track meet held at The Bolles School on April 6 and 7.
“It was my first time competing at this meet,” Morris said. ”Their track is something to definitely get used to because the curves were very narrow and the lanes were quite small.”
The 16-year-old has enjoyed considerable success competing for her school this year having achieved multiple podium displays with her team-mates in the 4 x 200 metres and 4 x 400 metres relay and ran a personal best of 41.54 in the 300 metres at the Virginia Showcase Meet in January.