Skip to content

Justin Gatlin wins; David Rudisha fades at Pre Classic

May 31, 2014, 6:02 PM EDT

Justin Gatlin AP

The Prefontaine Classic was headlined by Olympic champions Allyson FelixShelly-Ann Fraser-PryceAshton EatonDavid Rudisha and Sanya Richards-Ross. None of them won Saturday, but several world leads were set among eye-catching performances at Hayward Field in Eugene, Ore.

Justin Gatlin remained undefeated this season by taking the 100m in a wind-aided 9.76 seconds. Gatlin is the reigning Olympic bronze medalist and world silver medalist behind Usain Bolt, who is set to make his 2014 debut in the Czech Republic on June 17. Gatlin’s world lead this year is 9.87.

“My start wasn’t the best, like it’s been this year, but my second half I came on strong,” Gatlin told Lewis Johnson on NBC. “If I piece both [halves] of my races together, I think I can go 9.6.”

Neither Olympic champion Allyson Felix nor world champion Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce won a loaded 200m. Rather, it was Tori Bowie, a long jumper at the World Indoor Championships in March. Bowie knocked nearly four tenths off her personal best, winning out of lane one in 22.18, the fastest time in the world this year.

“I’m almost speechless right now, to be honest,” Bowie said.

Felix, who was carried off the track with a torn hamstring at last year’s World Championships, was third in 22.44.

“The last time I was running a 200m, I was on the ground,” Felix said. “I’m working myself back.”

Fraser-Pryce, who won triple gold at worlds, was shockingly last in 23.06. The Jamaican has dealt with a foot injury this year.

David Rudisha faded from the lead to seventh in the final 200m of the 800m in the world record holder’s first race in more than one year due to a knee injury. Olympic silver medalist Nijel Amos won in 1:43.63. Rudisha clocked 1:44.87.

“A couple of races, I’ll be ready,” Rudisha said afterward.

Olympic champions Kirani James and LaShawn Merritt continued their 400m rivalry with identical 43.97 times. James outleaned Merritt for the victory, taking a 6-5 edge in their career duels. They’re the only men to go sub-44 this year, or any of the last five years for that matter.

“We’ll go at it many more times,” Merritt said.

Olympic champion Sanya Richards-Ross was sixth in the 400m as she continues to come back from a toe injury. Jamaican Novlene Williams-Mills, a breast cancer survivor, prevailed in 50.4, .13 ahead of World Indoor champion Francena McCorory.

Olympic and world decathlon champion Ashton Eaton equaled his 110m hurdles personal best of 13.35 to finish sixth. He beat 2011 world 110m hurdles champion Jason Richardson.

France’s Pascal Martinot-Lagarde crossed first in 13.13, upsetting Olympic bronze medalist Hansle Parchment (13.2) and world champion David Oliver (13.21). Olympic champion Aries Merritt withdrew with a hamstring injury.

In the closing Bowerman Mile, Djibouti’s Ayanleh Souleiman ran the fastest mile since 2007 and the fastest ever on U.S. soil, winning in 3:47.32.

In field events, backwards hat-wearing Will Claye (17.66m) topped Christian Taylor (17.42) in a reversal of the Olympic triple jump final. Olympic champion and world record holder Renaud Lavillenie won the pole vault with a 5.8m clearance.

Olympic champion Anna Chicherova took the high jump, and world champion Vitezslav Vesely won the javelin.

Ethiopian-born Swede Abeba Aregawi lost a Diamond League 1500m for the first time since Aug. 17, 2012, snapping an eight-race win streak. Kenyan Hellen Obiri forced Aregawi to second, 3:57.05 to 3:57.57. American Jenny Simpson, the 2011 world champion, ran a personal best 3:58.28 for fourth.

Kenyan Caleb Ndiku won the 5000m in 13:01.71. Decorated American Bernard Lagat was a non-factor in 14th, 30 seconds behind.

Olympic 1500m silver medalist Leo Manzano won the non-Diamond League one mile race in 3:52.41. Kenyan Mercy Cherono, the world 5000m silver medalist, won the women’s two-mile in 9:13.27. Two-time Olympian Shannon Rowbury finished fourth and broke the American record in 9:20.25.

Jamaican Kaliese Spencer captured the 400m hurdles in 54.29, the fastest time in the world this year. Olympic bronze medalist Sofia Assefa took the 3000m steeplechase in 9:11.41, also a world-leading time (by eight seconds).

The Diamond League continues with a meet in Rome on Thursday.

Galen Rupp breaks American record at Pre Classic

Latest Posts
  1. France, Australia win first Youth Olympic rugby titles

    Aug 20, 2014, 9:23 AM EDT

    Rugby Getty Images

    First medals awarded on an Olympic stage in rugby since 1924.

  2. London Olympian wins historic bronze at Youth Olympics

    Aug 20, 2014, 8:46 AM EDT

    Lily Zhang Getty Images

    Lily Zhang scored a breakthrough for U.S. table tennis.

  3. U.S. Youth Olympic swimmers teammates now, college roommates later (video)

    Aug 20, 2014, 8:28 AM EDT

    Hannah Moore Getty Images

    Gold medalists Hannah Moore and Clara Smiddy will go from Nanjing to Ann Arbor.

  4. Pan Pacific Championships men’s events preview

    Aug 20, 2014, 8:04 AM EDT

    Nathan Adrian, James Magnussen Getty Images

    U.S. vs. Australia in sprint head to head; outlook for Phelps and Lochte.

  5. Michael Phelps scratches first two events of Pan Pacs

    Aug 20, 2014, 5:34 AM EDT

    Michael Phelps Getty Images

    Phelps’ debut in Australia pushed back to Friday.

  6. Missy Franklin (back) in doubt for Pan Pacific Championships

    Aug 20, 2014, 5:08 AM EDT

    Missy Franklin Getty Images

    Video of Franklin being gingerly helped away from the pool.

  7. Michael Phelps takes on vocal leader role in Australia

    Aug 19, 2014, 3:06 PM EDT

    Michael Phelps Getty Images

    Phelps also reflects on his first Olympics, also in Australia.

  8. U.S. gymnast Alec Yoder wins all-around bronze at Youth Olympics

    Aug 19, 2014, 11:36 AM EDT

    Alec Yoder Getty Images

    More medals could be in Indy native’s future in Nanjing.

  9. Can David Wilson, ex-NFL RB, make the 2016 U.S. Olympic Team?

    Aug 19, 2014, 10:40 AM EDT

    David Wilson AP

    Former Giant must shoot for a specific distance in the triple jump.

  10. Lolo Jones ends track and field season early

    Aug 19, 2014, 9:55 AM EDT

    Lolo Jones AP

    Summer and Winter Olympian said she has taken no breaks more than two days in the last two years.

  11. Golf debuts at Youth Olympics with hole-in-one (video)

    Aug 19, 2014, 9:39 AM EDT

    Youth Olympics Golf

    Canadian makes Olympic history with first career hole-in-one.

  12. Yogging a hit at Youth Olympic Games (video)

    Aug 19, 2014, 9:04 AM EDT

    Yogging

    Athletes gaining social media friends via interesting device in Nanjing.

  13. Step right up: the Nanjing 2014 Video Booth

    Aug 18, 2014, 10:21 PM EDT

    Youth Olympics - Opening Ceremony Getty Images

    Watch what happens when the world’s best teenage athletes interview themselves.

  14. Usain Bolt wins his first 100m of 2014

    Aug 18, 2014, 7:45 AM EDT

    Usain Bolt Usain Bolt

    The Jamaican sprinter finishes in 10.06 on Copcabana beach, nearly half a second off his world-record pace.

  15. American Sabrina Massialas wins fencing gold at Youth Olympics

    Aug 17, 2014, 10:21 PM EDT

    IAAF World Junior Championships - Day 3 Getty Images

    Team USA won its first three medals at the Youth Olympics in Nanjing Sunday.

  16. Ruta Meilutyte adds Olympic star power to Nanjing Games

    Aug 16, 2014, 6:11 PM EDT

    Ruta Meilutyte Getty Images

    London Olympic champion begins quest for Nanjing gold Sunday.

  17. Youth Olympics begin with festive Opening Ceremony in Nanjing (photos)

    Aug 16, 2014, 10:31 AM EDT

    Youth Olympics

    IOC president calls on youth athletes to “set a record for selfies.”

  18. Michael Phelps enters 5 events at Pan Pacific Championships

    Aug 15, 2014, 12:53 PM EDT

    Michael Phelps, Ryan Lochte Getty Images

    Stars missing from Brazil, China, Japan and South Africa.

  19. Some athletes from Ebola-hit nations barred from competing at Youth Olympics

    Aug 15, 2014, 11:46 AM EDT

    Youth Olympics Getty Images

    Other athletes from those nations subject to regular temperature and physical assessment.