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Bershawn Jackson: Hurdling the Competition


Bershawn Jackson: Hurdling the Competition

Bershawn Jackson

Matthew Stockman/Getty Images
Jackson’s 2008 U.S. Olympic Trials victory in the 400-meter hurdles over defending World Outdoor Champion Kerron Clement was one of the Trials’ more interesting surprises. There was a bigger surprise to come in Beijing, however, when a third American, Angelo Taylor, won the 400 hurdles gold, with Clement taking silver and Jackson bronze. Jackson repeated his performance by taking third at the 2009 World Championships. A talented indoor performer as well, Jackson won his second U.S. Indoor title in the straight 400 meters in 2010.


Jackson says he was called "Batman" as a boy because he had big ears. The nickname stuck, but it came to represent his grace when "flying" over the hurdles at high speed.

Quick rise:

Jackson literally shot up the world rankings in 2005 and finished the season ranked No. 1. He won the World Outdoor Championship that year with a personal best 47.30, was second in the U.S. Outdoors, earned his second consecutive World Athletic Finals title and won the straight 400-meter run at the U.S. Indoors. Jackson’s rating slipped to No. 2 in 2006 and No. 5 in 2007.

Quality coach:

Jackson may not have made the 2004 Olympic team but he trains with that team’s head coach. Jackson now lives and trains in Raleigh, N.C. where he’s coached by George Williams.

The stats:

  • Height: 5-8
  • Weight: 158
  • Birth date: May 8, 1983
  • Hometown: Miami, Florida
  • World Championships: One (2005, outdoor)
  • Personal best: 47.30 (400 hurdles); 45.06 (straight 400)


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