Ageless Justin Gatlin beats the youngsters in US 100m final
Olympic Games silver medallist clocks 9.95 seconds at US Track and Field Championships to join Christian Coleman Chris Belcher on team for August’s World Championships in London
Olympic Games silver medallist Justin Gatlin stormed to the lead in the final 20 metres and defeated favoured youngster Christian Coleman in the 100 metres final at the US Track and Field Championships on Friday.
Gatlin, 35, claimed the victory in 9.95 seconds in his best performance of an injury-plagued season.
Coleman, 21, clocked 9.98 for second with another newcomer Chris Belcher, 23, running 10.06 to complete the US team for August’s World Championships in London.
“It was a fighting moment,” Gatlin said. “It wasn’t the spectacular times that you have seen me run in the last couple of years but it was a time where I needed to fight.”
The victory earned Gatlin a chance to compete against rival and world record holder Usain Bolt one more time with Jamaican retiring after the 100 metres at the World Championships.
Coleman, who has the year’s fastest time of 9.82 seconds, said his reaching for the finish line caused him to lose momentum in the side-by-side race with Gatlin, his mentor.
“Up until the lean it could have gone either way,” said Coleman.
Double Olympic medallist Tori Bowie won the women’s 100 in 10.94 seconds and she was joined on the team for London by two Oregon collegians, Deajah Stevens and Ariana Washington.
World 400 metres champion Allyson Felix, who was running the 100 for speed work, finished last in 11.28.
Two-time Olympic triple jump champion Christian Taylor, who needed only to appear at the championships to collect a wild card spot for the World Championship, intentionally fouled on his only attempt.
Taylor, who trains in Europe, said he had sought to be excused from competing after delivering the best jump of the year, 18.11 metres, last month in Oregon, but was denied.
Why beating Justin Gatlin at the athletics world championships could turn out to be Usain Bolt’s most important victory
“It is unfortunate,” said Taylor of not giving a full performance. “Every time I come out to the track I want to put on a show. but this time I have to be smart.”
Olympic silver medallist Will Claye won the event at 17.91 metres.
Trey Hardee, the world champion in 2009 and 2011, won the decathlon with 8,225 points and the 5,000 metres titles went to Olympic silver medallist Paul Chelimo and Shelby Houlihan.