Samyr Laine (born July 17, 1984 in Nyack, New York) is a Haitian-American triple jumper who competed for Haiti at the 2012 Summer Olympics and other international competitions since the 2007 Pan American Games.
Laine's parents were born in Haiti. He began participating in sports in the 7th grade, where he was relegated to the distance events because of his size.[clarification needed] Laine joined the team for the sprints, but ended up running the mile, 2-mile and steeplechase that year. The following year he picked up tennis for three years, even playing for his high school tennis team at Newburgh Free Academy.
During the 2000 Sydney Olympics Laine watched and recorded every athletics event. The Games served as his inspiration and he began to train in anticipation of the 2000–2001 season. He trained and was able to negotiate his way into the 200m/400m group, with some horizontal jumping sprinkled in to help the team with points. He stepped away from the track again to focus on his schooling and debating, having been a member of the debate team since the 8th grade. Laine continued to train and competed at New York's Empire State Games during the summer.
During his senior year of high school was when he was able to get a full year of athletics. He made substantial gains that year in what would quickly become his best event, the triple jump, improving from the 42 feet (12.80m) the year before to 45 feet (13.70m) indoors and then 46 feet (14m) outdoors, good enough for 3rd place at the State Championships. After being recruited by nearly all the Ivy League Schools, Laine chose to attend Harvard University.
In his four years at Harvard University his jump improved over 7 feet (2.15m). After two second-place finishes at the conference championships in his freshman year, he placed first in indoors and outdoors for the next two years. In his junior year, although battling with some injuries, he was able to achieve the status of All-American at the NCAA Championships. At that meet, he set what was the Ivy League record at the time and is still the Harvard University triple jump record of 51 feet, 11 1/4 inches and Harvard's outdoor triple jump record of 53 feet, 7 1/2 inches. The following year he struggled with more injuries and was forced to “red shirt” his final outdoor season and watch the team of which he had been voted captain from the sidelines. Laine was a university roommate of Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg and was the 14th person to register for the site. His injury enabled him to use his final season of collegiate eligibility at the University of Texas at Austin, where he finished his graduate program in 2007. He was able to return to his 2005 form, and achieved the Pan American Games standard. He later graduated from the Georgetown University Law Center in 2010.
It was in 2007 that he first competed under the Haitian flag. Although he was born in the United States, both of his parents and the majority of his extended family had emigrated from Haiti, which allowed him to represent the nation at the Pan American Games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil and beyond.
|2007||Pan American Games||Rio de Janeiro, Brazil||10th||Triple jump||15.45 m (wind: +1.3 m/s)|
|2009||World Championships||Berlin, Germany||29th (q)||Triple jump||16.34 m (wind: 0.0 m/s)|
|2010||World Indoor Championships||Doha, Qatar||16th (q)||Triple jump||16.30 m|
|Central American and Caribbean Games||Mayagüez, Puerto Rico||3rd||Triple jump||17.01 (wind: +0.3 m/s)|
|2011||Central American and Caribbean Championships||Mayagüez, Puerto Rico||1st||Triple jump||17.09 m (wind: -0.5 m/s)|
|World Championships||Daegu, South Korea||19th (q)||Triple jump||16.38 m (wind: +0.1 m/s)|
|Pan American Games||Guadalajara, México||5th||Triple jump||16.39 m (wind: +1.4 m/s)|
|2012||World Indoor Championships||Istanbul, Turkey||13th (q)||Triple jump||16.06|
|Olympic Games||London, United Kingdom||11th||Triple jump||16.65 m (wind: +0.8 m/s)|
|2013||World Championships||Moscow, Russia||11th||Triple jump||16.09 m (wind: -0.8 m/s)|
|Jeux de la Francophonie||Nice, France||5th||Triple jump||16.43 m (wind: -0.5 m/s)|
|2014||World Indoor Championships||Sopot, Poland||10th (q)||Triple jump||16.13 m|
|Pan American Sports Festival||Ciudad de México, México||2nd||Triple jump||17.10 m A (wind: +0.2 m/s)|
|Central American and Caribbean Games||Xalapa, México||6th||Triple jump||16.08 m A (wind: -0.8 m/s)|
|2015||Pan American Games||Toronto, Canada||6th||Triple jump||16.43 m (wind: +0.8 m/s)|
|2015 NACAC Championships in Athletics||San José, Costa Rica||4th||Triple jump||16.38 m (w)|
|World Championships||Beijing, China||22nd (q)||Triple jump||16.23 m|
|Long jump||7.07 m (wind: +0.2 m/s)||Raleigh, North Carolina||28 Mar 2008|
|Triple jump||17.39 m A (wind: +1.3 m/s)||Bogotá||24 Jul 2009|
|Long jump||7.18 m||Hanover, New Hampshire||25 Feb 2006|
|Triple jump||16.91 m||Fairfax, Virginia||27 Feb 2011|
Laine currently[when?] trains and resides in the Washington, D.C. area and speaks fluent French. Laine is working on his Jump for Haiti Foundation, which will focus on mentoring Haitian children and developing more Haitian athletes.