Rai Benjamin (born July 27, 1997) is an American professional hurdler and sprinter specializing in the 400 m and 400 m hurdles. He is the joint third fastest man in history in the 400 m hurdles with a personal best time of 46.98 s, one of only four times in history under 47.00 s. He won a silver medal at his first World Championships in 2019 in the men's 400 m hurdles, and a gold medal in the 4 × 400 m relay at the same competition.
Rai Benjamin at the 2018 NCAA Division I Championships
|Born||July 27, 1997|
Mount Vernon, New York
|Residence||Los Angeles, California|
|Height||1.90 m (6 ft 3 in)|
|Sport||Track and field|
|College team||USC Trojans (2018)|
UCLA Bruins (2016, 2017)
|Coached by||Joanna Hayes|
Caryl Smith Gilbert
|Achievements and titles|
In college Benjamin ran for the UCLA Bruins and then the USC Trojans, where in early 2018 he was part of the team that set the world best time in the indoor 4 × 400 m relay with a time of 3:00.77. At the time, his relay split time of 44.35 s was the fastest ever recorded in an indoor race. In June of the same year he also helped set the NCAA record in the same event but outdoors, and ran what was at the time the second fastest 400 m hurdles race of all-time in 47.02 s.
In 2017, the IAAF suspended all transfers of allegiance, meaning Benjamin could not represent the United States until transfers were reinstated in summer 2018. In October 2018, Benjamin's transfer request was approved, allowing him to represent the United States abroad and compete in USATF Championship events.
Benjamin is a 3-time NCAA Division I track champion; Benjamin earned 8 NCAA Division I All-America honors , 3 Pac-12 Conference titles and 1 Mountain Pacific Sports Federation title as a college student-athlete.
Benjamin earned two NCAA Division I All-America honors after his 2018 NCAA Division I Outdoor Track and Field Championships where he placed 1st in the 400 meters hurdles in a college record time of 47.02 while being a part of a team that ran 2:59.00 to win the 4x400 m. The 47.02, at the time, equalled Edwin Moses for the #2 time in history.
Benjamin earned two NCAA Division I All-America honors after his 2018 NCAA Division I Indoor Track and Field Championships where he placed 3rd in the 200 m in a time of 20.34 while being a part of a team that ran 3:00.77 to win the 4x400 m in a college indoor track record time.
Benjamin earned two NCAA Division I All-America honors after his 2017 NCAA Division I Outdoor Track and Field Championships where he placed 2nd in the 400 m hurdles in a time of 48.33 while being a part of a team that ran 39.89 in the 4x100 m.
Benjamin earned one NCAA Division I All-America honor after his 2016 NCAA Division I Outdoor Track and Field Championships where he placed 6th in the 400 meters hurdles in a time of 49.82.
Benjamin earned one NCAA Division I All-America honor after his 2016 NCAA Division I Indoor Track and Field Championships where the team placed 7th that ran 9:34.39 in the Distance medley relay.
|Representing University of Southern California|
|Year||Mountain Pacific Sports Federation
Indoor track and field
|NCAA Division I|
Outdoor track and field
|2018||200 m 3rd
|400 m hurdles 1st
|400 m hurdles 1st|
|400 m 1st
|4x400 m 1st
|4x100 m 1st
|4x400 m 1st|
|Representing University of California Los Angeles|
|2017||4x400 m 5th
|400 m hurdles 1st
|400 m hurdles 2nd|
|200 m 3rd
|2016||400 m 7th
|400 m hurdles
|400 m hurdles 6th|
|4x100 m 4th
Prep and Personal lifeEdit
Benjamin from Mount Vernon High School (New York) was the fastest 2015 prep time in the United States in the 400m hurdles with a time of 49.97, fastest 400 m indoor time in the country with a 46.59 and the third fastest outdoor time 46.19.
Benjamin won the 2015 New York Indoor State meet with a national leading time of 33.17 in the 300 meters. He was a three-time New York State Public High School Athletic Association champion in the 400m hurdles.
Just after completing his second year, he represented Antigua and Barbuda at the 2013 World Youth Championships. Just after graduating, he won a silver medal in the 400 meters at the 2015 CARIFTA Games.
|400 m hurdles||46.98||Weltklasse Zürich||Zürich, Switzerland||August 29, 2019|
|400 m||44.31||Mt. SAC Relays||Torrance, California, U.S.||April 20, 2019|
|300 m indoor||32.55||New Balance Indoor Grand Prix||Boston, Massachusetts, U.S.||January 26, 2019|
|200 m||19.99||Meeting de Paris||Paris, France||June 30, 2018||−0.6 m/s wind|
|200 m indoor||20.34||NCAA Division I Indoor Championships||College Station, Texas, U.S.||March 10, 2018|
|4×400 m relay||2:56.69||World Championships||Doha, Qatar||October 6, 2019||WL|
|4×400 m relay indoor||3:00.77||NCAA Division I Indoor Championships||College Station, Texas, U.S.||March 10, 2018||WB[note 1]|
|Year||400 m hurdles||400 m||200 m|
International championship resultsEdit
|Representing Antigua and Barbuda|
|2013||World Youth Championships||Donetsk, Ukraine||5th (semi 3)||400 m hurdles||52.36||PB|
|2015||CARIFTA Games (U20)||Basseterre, Saint Kitts and Nevis||2nd||400 m||46.19||PB|
|World Relays||Nassau, Bahamas||DNF (semi 1)||4×200 m relay||–|
|Representing the United States|
|2019||World Championships||Doha, Qatar||2nd||400 m hurdles||47.66|
|1st||4×400 m relay||2:56.69||WL, PB|
National championship resultsEdit
|Representing the UCLA Bruins|
|2016||NCAA Division I Championships||Eugene, Oregon||6th||400 m hurdles||49.82||PB|
|2017||NCAA Division I Championships||Eugene, Oregon||2nd||400 m hurdles||48.33||PB|
|7th (semi 1)||4×100 m relay||39.89|
|Representing the USC Trojans|
|2018||NCAA Division I Indoor Championships||College Station, Texas||3rd||200 m||20.34||PB|
|1st||4×400 m relay||3:00.77||WB[note 1]|
|NCAA Division I Championships||Eugene, Oregon||1st||400 m hurdles||47.02||WL, NCAAR, PB|
|1st||4×400 m relay||2:59.00||NCAAR, PB|
|2019||USA Championships||Des Moines, Iowa||1st||400 m hurdles||47.23|
400 m hurdlesEdit
- Sully, Kevin (October 4, 2018). "Rai Benjamin Cleared To Tompete for the US". milesplit.com. FloSports, Inc. Retrieved January 23, 2019.
- Lindstrom, Sieg (January 19, 2019). "New Flag, New Beginning for Rai Benjamin". trackandfieldnews.com. Track & Field News. Retrieved January 20, 2019.
- Sully, Kevin (June 14, 2018). "Rai Benjamin is Now a Nike Athlete". flotrack.org. FloSports, Inc. Retrieved January 24, 2019.
- Rowbottom, Mike (July 1, 2018). "Norman and Benjamin the latest starts to shine in the IAAF Diamond League". iaaf.org. IAAF. Retrieved January 23, 2019.
- Zaccardi, Nick (June 30, 2018). "Abderrahman Samba runs second-fastest 400m hurdles ever (video)". nbcsports.com. NBC. Retrieved January 23, 2019.
- Wharton, David (April 20, 2019). "Mt. SAC Relays' road show ends with some top marks, including Michael Norman's 400 win". latimes.com. Los Angeles Times. Retrieved April 21, 2019.
- Burke, Timothy (June 8, 2018). "Rai Benjamin Runs 47.02 400m Hurdles, Tied For Second-Fastest in Human History". deadspin.com. Deadspin. Retrieved January 24, 2019.
- "400m hurdles (84.0 cm) Boys semi-final results".
- "Transfer of Allegiance".
- 2018 Paris Diamond League 200 m
- Rai Benjamin UCLA track results TFRRS. June 30, 2018
- Rai Benjamin USC track results TFRRS. June 30, 2018
- Rai Benjamin USC profile University of Southern California. June 30, 2018
- Rai Benjamin UCLA profile University of California Los Angeles. June 30, 2018
- track ucla mount vernon rai benjamin
- Levy, Leighton (October 4, 2018). "Antiguan star athlete Rai Benjamin switches allegiance to USA". sportsmax.tv. SportsMaxTV. Retrieved January 23, 2019.
- "RAI BENJAMIN ATHLETE PROFILE". iaaf.org. IAAF. Retrieved October 7, 2019.
- "RAI BENJAMIN UCLA". tfrrs.org. Track & Field Results Reporting System. Retrieved February 20, 2019.
- "RAI BENJAMIN USC". tfrrs.org. Track & Field Results Reporting System. Retrieved February 20, 2019.
- Joe Fleming (March 12, 2018). "World, collegiate records highlight NCAA indoor track and field championships". usatoday.com. USA Today. Retrieved October 9, 2019.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Rai Benjamin.|
- Rai Benjamin on Twitter
- Rai Benjamin at IAAF
- Rai Benjamin profile at TFRRS (USC)
- Rai Benjamin profile at TFRRS (UCLA)
- Rai Benjamin bio at USC Trojans
- Rai Benjamin bio at UCLA Bruins
- Michael Norman and Rai Benjamin at Mt SAC Relays 2019 via MyStyle Records on YouTube
- Michael Norman 19.84 Wins Men's 200m – IAAF Diamond League Paris 2018 via IAAF Diamond League on YouTube (Rai Benjamin 2nd in 19.99)