Filipino-American Eric Shauwn Cray set another Philippine record in the 400-meter hurdles after finishing second place in the IAAF Madrid World Challenge Cup held in Madrid, Spain.
Cray, who will be seeing action in the 2016 Olympic Games in Brazil, submitted 48.98 seconds to break the national mark of 49.07 seconds he also set in Kawasaki, Japan on in May.
Cray was just .02 second behind gold medalist American Jeshua Anderson, who had a 48.96-second showing.
Sergio Fernandez of Spain, meanwhile, landed in third place with 49.02 seconds.
“I am very happy. I hope he would keep some improvements so that he can make it to the finals of the Olympics and ultimately to the podium,” Philippine Athletics Track and Field Association (PATAFA) president Philip Ella Juico told The Manila Times in an interview.
The 27-year old Cray is still awaiting the official confirmation from the International Association of Athletics Federation of his participation in the Rio Games.
Cray actually raced two weeks ago in Europe and placed fourth with a time of 49.89 seconds.
His time of 49.07 in Japan had already placed him at No. 26 in the list of qualifiers for Rio Games.
Cray is targeting 48.50 to be at least a finalist in the Olympics. He can achieve the 48.10-second mark to win the coveted gold medal in Rio, according to Juico.
“He will train in United States all the way to Rio,” Juico said.
Cray was the first Filipino to qualify for the Rio Olympics after surpassing the 49.40 Olympic qualifying standard time when he clocked 49.12 seconds in May in 2015 during a meet in Los Angeles.