Miami runner Cha’iel Johnson, 12, daughter of former NFL wide receiver Chad Johnson, eclipsed her national record for the girls’ 800-meter race (12-year-olds division) Wednesday morning with a time of 2:14.80 to win the AAU National Club Championship at ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex at Walt Disney World Resort. Johnson – a member of The Miami Gardens Xpress Track Club and the nation’s No. 1-ranked 800m runner in her age group – beat her previous record of 2:16.35.
In addition to the 800m, Johnson will compete in the 1500m for the first time in her career on Thursday. She is expected to challenge the national record in her age group for that event (4:56.99). Later this summer, Johnson will compete in the AAU Junior Olympic Games in Detroit, Mi., where she will attempt to defend her 2016 800m title (2:19.16). She also won an AAU Junior Olympic title in 2015 in the 400m (1:01.57).
More than 5,000 track and field athletes are competing for top honors in the AAU National Club Championships at ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex July 10 – 15. The event features the best sprinters, distance runners and field competitors from across the country, Barbados and Puerto Rico. The AAU National Club Championships are the final qualifying event before the AAU Junior Olympic Games.