Kerley throws down World Championship challenge in 100m win at US trials
In order to win the 100m in the US trials on Friday and solidify his position as a favourite for the World Championships next month, Fred Kerley ran a world-beating 9.76sec in the semi-finals, then followed it up with a 9.77.
A day after posting the 2022 season’s best 9.83 in the heats, Kerley ran in the semi-finals with a legal wind speed of 1.4m/sec.
The silver medalist from the Olympics in Tokyo set the tone for the competition and didn’t let down.
Despite not having a solid start, he surged in the middle of the race to take the lead and finish in front of Trayvon Bromell and Marvin Bracy Williams.
Williams set a career-best time of 9.85 seconds, and Bromell qualified for the World Championships in 9.88.
The championship match lacked Christian Coleman, the current world champion. After posting the fourth-fastest time in the semi-finals, he was a last-minute scratch.
“Just patience and training,” said Kerley, who finished second to Italian Lamont Marcell Jacobs in the Tokyo Olympics.
With Bromell and Coleman, his semi-final time tied him for sixth quickest overall in the 100m.
Only Tyson Gay and Justin Gatlin among Americans have ran faster, but not on US soil.
Coleman will have a bye into the Global Championships in July, which will take place on the same Hayward Field track as the 2019 world championship.
After serving an 18-month suspension for skipping drug test visits, he had previously stated that he intended to run every round as he worked his way back into peak condition.
But he failed to show up at the final starting line an hour and a half after the semi-finals.
Sha’Carri Richardson’s unexpected departure from the heats on Thursday left the women’s 100m final without another anticipated star.
Aleia Hobbs came in second in 10.72 seconds, while Twanisha Terry came in third in 10.74 seconds as the unexpected winner with a stunning career-best time of 10.69 seconds.
The third-year college student, who earlier this month placed eighth in the 100m at the NCAA collegiate championships after winning the 60m at the NCAA Indoor championships in March, had a strong comeback effort.
The top three finishers secured their first-ever individual spots on a World Championships team.