School — Harvard (2006)
Country — Haiti
Hometown — Newburgh, N.Y.
Event — Triple Jump (NBC Preview)
Event Qualification — Tues., August 7, 5:45 am Eastern
Event Finals — Thurs., August 9, 2:20 pm Eastern
Samyr Laine was a four-time Ivy League champion (2004 & 2005), outdoor All-American (2005) and former Ivy League record holder (53-7 1/2) in the triple jump when he wore the Crimson uniform. The son of Haitian immigrants, Laine discovered his jumping talents as a high school senior in Newburgh, N.Y. He’d previously dabbled in track and field on-and-off for a number of years.
While studying government at Harvard, Laine’s dedication and work ethic resulted in a seven-foot improvement during his undergraduate career. Injuries forced him to the sideline as a senior, but he’d cash in that time at the University of Texas, where he competed as a Longhorn for a year, fine-tuning his technique.
He qualified for the 2007 Pan American Games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, and finished 10th in his first appearance under the Haitian flag. Laine continued to compete on the international scale, including four straight IAAF World Championships (outdoor in 2009 and 2011; indoor in 2010 and 2012). He set the Haitian national record in the triple jump (57-0 1/2) in 2009.
Laine was able to train and compete at this level while studying at the Georgetown Law School. He passed the bar exam in 2010.
SamyrLaine.com: Personal website
New York Daily News: Laine Is Jumping For Joy
Bloomberg: Zuckerberg Freshman Roommate Goes From Harvard to Haiti
Harvard Magazine: Up Three Times
Caribbean Journal: London Olympics Blog