Andre De Grasse was in action for the first time since Rio on Saturday.
The triple Olympic medallist ran legs of both the 4x100m and 4x200m as part of Athletics Canada’s teams at the Florida Relays in Gainesville, Fla. The Canadian quartet of Akeem Haynes, Aaron Brown, Brendon Rodney and De Grasse ran a world-leading 38.15 to win the 4x100m. Gavin Smellie (listed as Bolade Ajomale in the results, per Athletics Canada) subbed in for Haynes in the 4x200m, an event which the Canadians also won running 1:19.91.
The team is preparing for the 2017 IAAF World Relays in Nassau, Bahamas on April 22-23. De Grasse, who currently trains out of Scottsdale, Ariz. with ALTIS, is expected to race as part of Canada’s team at the world relays. The men’s 4x100m team won bronze at the 2016 Rio Olympics; De Grasse, who won silver in the 200m and bronze in the 100m, anchored Canada in the Olympic 4x100m final. The Canadian record in the 4x100m is 37.64, set by the same quartet who ran the one-lap relay in Florida.
Justin Gatlin, the 2004 Olympic 100m champion and a silver medallist in Rio, ran as part of the Star Athletics squad at the Florida Relays and they placed fourth in the men’s 4x100m relay. There were a mix of post-collegiates teams and university squads at the annual early-spring event in north Florida.
Video of 4x100m exchange between Rodney and De Grasse
The event to watch this summer will be the IAAF World Championships in London where the Markham, Ont. native will go up against Usain Bolt for possibly the final time as Bolt plans to retire after the 2017 championships. De Grasse is expected to race his first individual outdoor event of 2017 at the Mt. SAC Relays on April 13-15 in California.