Bershawn Jackson life and biography

Bershawn Jackson picture, image, poster

Bershawn Jackson biography

Date of birth : 1983-05-08
Date of death : -
Birthplace : Dade County, Florida, U.S.
Nationality : American
Category : Sports
Last modified : 2010-07-06
Credited as : Olympic athlete, ,

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Bershawn "Batman" Jackson (born May 8, 1983 in Dade County, Florida) is an American athlete, competing mainly in 400 m hurdles but also 400 m.

Bershawn Jackson's dream of making the U.S. track and field Olympics team crashed, literally, in 2004 when he collided with a hurdle during the U.S. trials. Four yeas later, Jackson had hopes of qualifying for the Summer Games in Beijing, China. He rebounded from an injury-plagued 2007 with victories early in 2008, including the Adidas Track Classic.

Standout in High School, College

Jackson was born in Miami, Florida. He starred in track at Miami Central High School, where he graduated in 2002. He was the 400-meter hurdles national scholastic champion, and in several marquee youth track and field events. He joined the roster of St. Augustine College in Raleigh, North Carolina, in 2004.

Also in 2004, Jackson appeared headed for a spot on the U.S. Olympic team for the Summer Games in Athens, Greece. But in July of that year, at the U.S. trials in Sacramento, California, Jackson, who was leading at the time, caught his trailing leg on the tenth hurdle and fell from first to fourth place--only the top three qualify. "I was devastated. It was heartbreaking," Jackson told Dick Patrick in USA Today.

Jackson ended the year ranked first in the United States in the 400 hurdles, but "those distinctions were scant consolation for not being in Athens," Patrick wrote in another USA Today. article. Jackson told Patrick: "It was hard, real hard. It was hard watching the Olympics knowing I should have been a medalist. I think about last year and use the fire for this year. Every time I train and compete, I think about missing the Olympic team. That will never happen again."

Won World Outdoor Title

Jackson rebounded to capture the world outdoor championship in 2005. Other major victories that year, all in the 400 meters, were the U.S. indoor, the Nike Prefontaine Classic, and the Adidas Track Classic. The trade publication Track & Field News ranked him first worldwide that year.

At the world outdoor meet in Helsinki, Finland, Jackson won with a personal record of 47.30 seconds amid rain and wind. "I wasn't going to let nothing stop me at all, either rain or snow or anything," he said, as quoted by Patrick. Jackson, who stands just five-foot, eight inches tall and weighs 158 pounds, added: "Age, size has nothing to do with it. It's all about the heart you have. I have a big heart." Redemption also motivated runner-up and fellow American James Carter, who had finished fourth and just missed a medal in the previous two Olympics.

After struggling through much of 2007, which he attributed to hamstring and groin injuries, Jackson rebounded in early 2008 with victories in the DKB-ISTAF meet in Berlin, Germany, the Adidas Track Classic, and the Kansas Relays. While running, he wore a headband dedicated to the memory of his uncle, Richard Jackson, who encouraged his sporting pursuits. He also wears the name of his daughter, Shawnti, on his shoes. "She is my biggest motivation," he said.

...Naysayers also motivated him. "Everyone doubted me," he said, according to an article on the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) Web site. "People said I couldn't do it. It hurts me to know that, if you have one bad year, you're totally forgotten."

Jackson, who runs for the Nike team when not representing the United States, lives in Raleigh. His coach is George Williams. His agent is Peter Stubbs.

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