Christian Coleman gave another display of sizzling pace as he won his 100 meter heat at the USA Track and Field (USATF) World Championship trials in Sacramento in 9.93sec on a day which saw Galen Rupp lost out in the men’s 10,000m.
Isiah Young, with 9.97, was the only other runner to clock a sub-10 time in the 100m on the day at the Hornet Stadium.
Former world and Olympic champion Justin Gatlin offered evidence of his intent by posting the third fastest time of the day, 10.00, with another relative veteran of the event, Mike Rodgers, finishing in the same time.
Coleman, head of year’s 100m world rankings after recording 9.82 earlier this season, noticeably slowed towards the finish and said he is up for taking anyone on the track, including Jamaica’s Usain Bolt, at this year’s International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) World Championships in London.
“Yeah, I have complete confidence in myself that I can beat anybody I get on the line with, whether it’s him [Usain Bolt] or anybody else,” the 21-year-old from Atlanta said.
Gatlin, returning to fitness after a string of injuries, said he was happy with his time.
“It’s a surreal time for me,” the 35-year-old Athens 2004 men’s 100m champion said.
“I am an older guy in a year that I’m probably the most injured I have ever been.”
But another sprint veteran, the 2007 world champion Tyson Gay, failed to progress to tomorrow’s semi-finals after stumbling at the start, eventually finishing in 10.17.
Ronnie Baker, a surprise winner of the IAAF Diamond League 200m in Shanghai clocking 19.90, moved through with a time of 10.02, the same as Christopher Belcher.
Cameron Burrell, son of former world record holder Leroy, also made it to the semi-finals, clocking 10.11.
Double Olympic medalist Rupp refused to talk to the media after failing to win a ninth 10,000m USATF title in what may have been his last track race on home soil before he concentrates on road running.
Rupp, fifth in 29min 04.61sec, exited despite being asked by USTAF officials to speak to journalists present.
In temperatures that had mercifully dropped by the evening, Hassan Mead took the title in 29:01.44, with two United States Army runners, Shadrack Kipchirchir and Leonard Korir, second and third in 29:01.68 and 29:02.64 respectively.
Three women broke 11 seconds in the first round of the 100m, with double Olympic medalist Torie Bowie qualifying fastest in 10.90.
Behind her were Morolake Akinosun, who clocked 10.98 to win a heat in which multiple world and Olympic champion Allyson Felix also qualified in 11.03, and Barbara Pierre with a time of 10.99.
Felix is running the 100m and 200m in Sacramento as speed work for the 400m in London, where she already has a wildcard as reigning champion.
Molly Huddle won a dramatic women’s 10,000m race in 31:19.86, ahead of Emily Infeld and Emily Sisson.
Ajee’ Wilson was back to racing after the US Anti-Doping Agency announcement that she would lose her indoor national 800m record of 1:58.27 on February 11 after her sample showed up positive for the anabolic agent zeranol, but would receive no ban after it was concluded she had eaten meat which contains this agent.
Wilson safely won her opening heat in 2:02.84.
Also through to the semi-finals were 2013 world bronze medalist Brenda Martinez, the fastest qualifier in 2:02.31, and Raevyn Rogers, who clocked 2:03.01.
Former national 800m champion Alysia Montano, wearing a Wonder Woman T-shirt, ran the championships for the second time in four years while pregnant.
Five months with child this time, she finished last in the preliminaries in 2:21.40.
Montano was eight months pregnant when she ran at the Championships in 2014.
“There is something about coming out to any venue not really expecting to win but going along with the journey and seeing what comes out of it,” she said.
“It is the most beautiful part about me being a track and field athlete.”
Fred Kerley, who set the world’s fastest 400m of the year, 43.70, for Texas A&M University in May, moving to seventh on the all-time list in the process, reached the semi-finals with a heat victory in 45.13.
Clayton Murphy, seeking the first part of an 800/1500m double, moved safely through to the semi-finals, winning his heat in 1:47.88.
Eric Sowinski was fastest qualifier in 1:46.55.
Murphy then negotiated the first round of the 1500m in 3:40.94, with Olympic champion Matt Centrowitz third fastest in 3:40.79.
Alex Young took the men’s hammer title with a sixth round effort of 73.75 metres.
Kara Winger took the women’s javelin title with a best of 62.80m, while the women’s triple jump title went to Keturah Orji, who reached 14.26m.
By Mike Rowbottom
Republished with permission from insidethegames.biz.