Immediately following his second place finish in the men’s 400 meter, Christian Taylor made his way across the blue track at James G. Pressly Stadium and found coach Mike Holloway.
The UF alumnus greeted his former coach with a handshake and a hug before leaving the track on which he once spent most of his time running.
Taylor was one of several former Gators track and field athletes who returned to Percy Beard track on Thursday for Day 1 of the Pepsi Florida Relays.
Just a few current UF track and field distance runners made appearances in the final event of the day, which was the 5000-meter race.
A pair of former Gators sprinters highlighted the women's 400-meter dash. Robin Reynolds (2013-2016) and Kyra Jefferson (2013-2017) finished first and second, respectively, in the event.
Reynolds, who finished Thursday’s race with a time of 52.38, was a 10-time outdoor All-American at UF, and she ended her career with the No. 2-ranked 200-meter time (23.10) on Florida’s All-Time Indoor Top 10 and the fourth-ranked 400-meter time (51.36) on the program’s All-Time Outdoor Top Ten.
Jefferson clocked a time of 53.58. She was a six-time outdoor All-American at UF and won a 2017 NCAA Outdoor title in the 200-meter. She ended her career at UF with the school record in the indoor 200-meter.
In a competitive men’s 400-meter field, Taylor (2009-2011) finished second overall with a time of 45.48.
In three years at Florida, Taylor was a 10-time NCAA All-American, won three NCAA Championships and eight SEC Championships. He is also the reigning Olympic Champion and current World Champion.
Two other Gator alumni were TJ Holmes (2015-2017) and Calvin Smith (2007-2010), who finished third and seventh, respectively.
Meanwhile, freshmen Amanda Froeynes and Nikki Stephens wrapped up Day 2 at the Clyde Littlefield Texas Relays.
Froeynes finished third overall in the heptathlon with a total score of 5,546 points. That result puts her at the No. 5 spot in the NCAA and No. 3 on the Gators All-Time Top Ten.
Stephens finished 14th with a score of 5,080 points, good for No. 6 on the All-Time-Top Ten.
The Gators return today for Day 2 of the Florida Relays, which will feature sophomore Grant Holloway in the men’s 110-meter hurdles, junior Sharrika Barnett in the women’s 400 and senior Darrielle McQueen in the women’s long jump.
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Former Gator and two-time Olympic gold medalist Christian Taylor competed Thursday in Day 1 of the Pepsi Florida Relays.