Usain Bolt (left) cruises across the finish line to win the men's 100m dash at Saturday's Jamaica's Olympic Trials. Asafa Powell (second right) was second ahead of Michael Frater (Sporting Eagle) © Copyright
General News Kingston, Jamaica

Cruising! Bolt's 9.85 tops Powell's 9.97 in Kingston – Jamaican Champs, Day 2

Usain Bolt defeated Asafa Powell, but while both qualified for the men's 100m at the Beijing Olympic Games, Veronica Campbell-Brown missed out an automatic spot on the second day of the Jamaica's National Championships (28).

In the battle of the world's fastest men, Bolt had no problem in dismantling the field to take victory in 9.85 seconds.

Powell cruised home behind Bolt in 9.97, while Michael Frater was third in 10.04.

‘Just playing it safe’

After the race (-.01m/s wind), Bolt reiterated that the aim of the championships for him was not to see who the fastest man is. "We just went out there to qualify," Bolt said of Powell and his intentions.

"We got out because we had to run the first part of the race and this was the interesting part of it, but the aim was just to qualify," added Bolt, who ran 9.72 seconds in New York last month for the World record*.

"I think that Asafa (Powell) stop running from about 80m out," he said of his rival.

Powell, who made eyes contact with Bolt close towards the finish, said he achieved his aim.

"I just went out there to execute the first 50 metres and I did that, so I am pleased with the end result," Powell, whose personal best is 9.74.

"Bolt is running very well, 9.72 and 9.76 this season, and the fact is that I am just coming off injury, so I just had to play it safe," Powell added.

Stewart, 10.80, as four go sub-10.90!

Meanwhile, in the women's 100m battle Kerron Stewart ran a personal best, 10.80 seconds, as World champion Veronica Campbell-Brown was relegated to fourth spot (10.88). This means Campbell-Brown, base on the JAAA's rule, which states the first two automatically qualify and the third place is discretionary, could find herself out of the Beijing women's 100m, which she was one of the favourites to win.

Shelly-Ann Fraser, who broke 11 seconds for the first time with her 10.85 seconds, and Sherone Simpson (10.87) were second and third respectively.

Stewart, whose winning time made her the second fastest Jamaican woman ever, only behind Merlene Ottey (10.74), was pleased with her day's work.

"I am feeling good," Stewart said, but was quick to make it clear that she targets Ottey's national record.

"Second is good, but I am going for the number one spot," she added when asked how she feel to be the second fastest Jamaican woman ever. "My aim was to first make the team, it wasn't about time, but I ended up winning … and the time, I can not be sad about that," Stewart said with a smile.

Walker and McFarlane take hurdles

In the women's 400m Hurdles, Melaine Walker (54.58) defeated Nickeisha Wilson (54.74) and Shevon Stoddart (54.88), while Danny McFarlane, silver medallist at the last Olympic, won the men's one lap hurdles in 48.68, ahead of Isa Phillips (49.08) and Markino Buckley (49.14).

"Yesterday (Friday) I was a little concern because it had seems as Isa (Phillips) was ready for this (race), but maybe I overlooked it a little bit," he said of Phillips' 48.7.

"I decided I was going to come out and run a hard race and if they catch me, so be it, though I am not easy to be caught from behind," he added.

In the 1500m finals, Mardrea Hyman and Kevin Campbell won the male and female titles, with 4:21.00 and 3:56.97 respectively.

2005 World champion Trecia Smith won the women's Triple Jump with 13.61 metres.

In the 400m semis, Novlene Williams-Mills (50.62), the bronze medallist from Osaka, and Shericka Williams (50.67) made their way to the women’s final, while names making the men’s final include Ricardo Champbers (45.33), Sanjay Ayre (46.22) and Lansford Spence (45.73).

These one lap finals along with the two 200m races will provide some of the highlights of the final day of the championships, Sunday 29 June.

Anthony Foster for the IAAF

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