Bolt runs 9.77, Jelimo wins $1 million
Triple Olympic gold medallist Usain Bolt of Jamaica ran 9.77 seconds on Friday to take the 100-metre sprint at the Van Damme Memorial in Brussels, Belgium.
Bolt beat countryman Asafa Powell, who ran 9.83 seconds. Jamaica's Nesta Carter and Michael Frater finished third and fourth, respectively, ahead of the likes of Travis Padgett of the United States, Kim Collins of St. Kitts and Nevis, and Churandy Martina of the Netherlands Antilles.
The winner got off to a poor start, allowing Powell to burst out ahead, until catching his rival in the last 20 metres. The sprinters competed into a headwind on a cool evening.
"Asafa is a really fast guy. I'm getting used to chasing him," said Bolt.
CBC Sports will be televising action from the Van Damme and streaming online at CBCSports.ca on Saturday at 12 p.m. ET.
Bolt has twice set the 100-metre world record this year, astonishing the crowd at the Beijing Olympics with a 9.69 in the Aug. 16 final, in which Powell finished a disappointing fifth.
Bolt ran 9.72 in New York City in May, shaving 2/100ths of a second from Powell's previous world mark.
American Tyson Gay, the 2007 world champion, pulled out on the eve of the Van Damme due to the hamstring injury he first suffered at the U.S. Olympic trials in July.
The Brussels meet is part of the Golden League series.
Heading in, high jumper Blanka Vlasic of Croatia and Kenyan runner Pamela Jelimo were both still eligible for a $1-million jackpot that gets divided among athletes who win all six of their Golden League competitions during the season.
Jelimo, just 18, beat her nearest rival by more than three seconds in the women's 800-metre race. Jelimo clocked one minute 55.16 seconds.
World champion Vlasic was not able to do her part, giving Jelimo the entire cash prize. On the basis of a countback (fewer jumps), Arianne Friedrich of Germany was declared the winner in women's high jump.
Friedrich, Vlasic and surprise Beijing gold winner Tia Hellebaut of Belgium each cleared two metres but could not go any higher.
Canadian Priscilla Lopes-Schliep, who won bronze in Beijing, was fifth in her 100-metre hurdles race. Jamaican Delloreen Ennis-London came in at 12.65 seconds to edge American LoLo Jones for the win.
Kim Gevaert of Belgium on Friday ran 11.25 seconds to take the women's 100 over Debbie Ferguson of Bahamas and American Me'Lisa Barber. Gevaert helped lead her country to a silver medal in the 4x100 relay at the Beijing Games.
Kenyans run away with it
Jeremy Wariner of the United States won the men's 400, finishing ahead of Martyn Rooney of Great Britain. Olympic gold medallist LaShawn Merritt did not compete.
Yelena Isibayeva was again unrivalled in the women's pole vault. Isibayeva, who has set world records on 23 occasions, reached 4.72 metres. The height was 0.16 metres greater than her nearest rival.
Kenyan-born runners won several races.
Paul Kipsiele Koech won the men's 3,000-metre steeplechase in eight minutes 4.99 seconds, while Vivian Cheruiyot was the winner of the women's 5,000 in a time of 14:25.43.
Eliud Kipchoge won the men's 5,000 in 13:06.12. Kipchoge won silver at Beijing behind the great Kenenisa Bekele, who did not race on Friday. Kipchoge also won bronze in the distance at the 2004 Athens Games.
Youssef Saad Kamel of Bahrain edged Olympic bronze winner Alfred Yego of Kenya in the 800 metres. Kamel, who was born in Kenya, was a disappointing fifth in Beijing.
In other results:
- Marshevet Hooker of the United States took the 200 in 22.62 seconds, beating Jamaica's Kerron Stewart.
- American Kerron Clement won the 400-metre hurdles, clocking 48.29 seconds.
- Belal Mansoor Ali of Bahrain ran 3:35.94, the best in the men's 1,500.
- Finland's Tero Pitkamaki heaved the javelin 85.82 metres for the win.
- Miguel Pate of the U.S. leapt 8.02 metres to take the men's long jump.