American sprint legend Michael Johnson feels sorry for 'talented' compatriot who failed to fulfil potential

Costas Goulas

American sprint legend Michael Johnson feels sorry for 'talented' compatriot who failed to fulfil potential

Abigael Wafula 17:45 - 12.04.2024

Michael Johnson has opened up about how his retired compatriot, Xavier Carter, did not make good use of his talent.

American legend Michael Johnson has made his remarks concerning the career of retired track and field American athlete Xavier Carter.

Johnson termed his compatriot as an athlete who had the talent in running but unfortunately, he was unable to propel his talent to the pro level. During his time in high school, Carter became a star track athlete and football player but did not extend his winning ways to the senior level.

The 38-year-old’s high school track career included nine Florida state titles, ten regional, district, and county crowns, and nine Cape Coast Conference titles. Carter did not stop at anything when he won the 100 meters, 200 meters, and 400 meters in 2003 and 2004 to become the only athlete in Florida history to do so.

Commenting on a photo that portrayed all his achievements before he turned pro, Johnson said: “One of the most talented athletes ever! But sadly, wasn’t able to parlay it into success at the pro level.”

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After having a successful run in high school and a part of college where he bagged the NCAA championships titles, the American announced that he would forgo his remaining two years of college to join the professional track and field circuit.

In 2006, at the Grand Prix in Lausanne, Switzerland, Carter ran what was then the second-fastest 200m race ever, recording a time of 19.63.

Carter's 2007 season was marred by a knee injury and it was not until the beginning of the 2008 athletics season that he fully recovered and competed in his first 400m race of the season and posting a time of 44.70 at the Reebok Grand Prix and he shifted focus to the 2008 Olympic Trials.

He competed in the 100m and 200m at the national trials, setting a new 100m personal best time but failed to get a slot to the Olympics. He also qualified for the final of the 200 meters trials but did not start, missing out on the opportunity to run at the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing. He last competed professionally in 2011 before quitting the sport completely.