Sports

Gay breaks 200m straight-track record

U.S. sprinter Tyson Gay broke a 44-year-old world mark for the 200 metres on a straight track, an unofficial record since athletics' governing body only recognizes 200m races run around a curve.

American sprinter Tyson Gay broke a 44-year-old world mark for the 200 metres on a straight track.

Gay ran 19.41 seconds into a slight headwind on a specially constructed track in Manchester, England, shaving 0.09 off Tommie Smith's straight-track mark set in May 1966 at San Jose, Calif. 

Smith was at the Great City Games to watch the 27-year-old Gay beat his time, which isn't an official world record because athletics' governing body only recognizes 200-metre races run around a curve. 

"Going into the race I knew it was going to be tough to beat the record," Gay said. "It was pretty hard for the first 100 metres or so and I was extremely tired.   

"Kim Collins had an excellent start and I think that motivated me to get down the street. It was truly amazing and it was tough record to break." 

Gay, a former 100 and 200 world champion, is working toward challenging three-time Olympic champ Usain Bolt's supremacy. Bolt is the world's current 200 world record holder, a 19.19-second mark he set at the 2009 World Championships.

"He's going to be tough to beat," Gay said. "Honestly, he's in another class right now but I'm working hard to get there. The challenge is for me to work hard to get to where he is at."

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