X-Man for Birmingham

LONDON, Dec 28, 2006 - Xavier Carter - the second fastest 200 metres runner in history - will compete at the Grand Prix indoor event in Birmingham, central England, on February 17.
Carter shot to global prominence earlier this year after running 19.63 seconds for the distance in Lausanne, Switzerland a time only bettered by Michael Johnson’s 10-year-old world record of 19.32secs.
The American earned that first invitation to the European Grand Prix circuit after clinching four titles at the prestigious US college championships, equalling the feat of the legendary Jesse Owens.
Carter will race over 400 metres at the National Indoor Arena as his speciality event is no longer part of the international indoor circuit because the tightness of bends rules out fair competition.
However, Carter is also successful at the longer distance. The 21-year-old Floridian topped the 2006 IAAF world indoor rankings with a mark of 45.28secs in Fayettville in March.
Carter was persuaded to make his first indoor appearance on British soil after relishing his inaugural outdoor race at the London Grand Prix in July.
I really enjoyed my first run in the UK at Crystal Palace this year,'' said Carter, who narrowly lost a thriller to fellow American Tyson Gay who set a UK all-comers' 200m record of 19.84secs. Carter added: So I was keen to come back and do the Norwich Union Grand Prix in Birmingham, which has the reputation as one of the best meetings on the indoor circuit.
The people in Britain seemed to take well to me when I was over here and to enjoy the fact that I'm putting a bit of fun back into the sport hopefully I can put on a show for them in Birmingham. This will be my only run in Europe this indoor season, so I want to make the most of it.’’