US sprinter Trayvon Bromell
It was quite fitting that the meeting at which Trayvon Bromell ran his fastest 100m for more than four years – a 9.90 clocking in Clermont on Friday (24) – was called ‘Back To The Track’.
Although every athlete has had to overcome challenges this year, the 2016 world indoor 60m champion’s journey back to the track this year has been more difficult than most.
After setting a world U20 record of 9.94 in 2014 and earning world bronze in 2015, Bromell was touted as the next big thing in sprinting. He equalled his PB of 9.84 in 2016 and reached the Olympic final, despite running with an achilles that was aggravated by a bone spur in his heel. But after crossing the line in the 4x100m final a few days later, he had to be taken off the track in a wheelchair.
It was the beginning of a three-year injury spell, during which he raced just three times. He joined Rana Reider’s group in Florida last year and finally started to make progress, the first clear sign being his 10.04 season opener in Montverde earlier this month.
With the rust blown off, at yesterday’s Back To The Track meet in Clermont Bromell went even faster, winning his heat in 9.90 (1.4m/s), the fourth-fastest time of his career, to finish comfortably ahead of world 200m champion Noah Lyles (10.04). Triple Olympic medallist Andre De Grasse won the second heat in 9.97 (1.9m/s).
Bromell opted against running the final, which Lyles won in a wind-assisted 9.93 (2.3m/s) from De Grasse’s 9.97.
Both men returned to the track 24 hours later for the 200m. Lyles chased down Kenny Bednarek, the early leader, and pulled away to win his heat in 19.94 (0.8m/s). Bednarek was second in 20.19, finishing just ahead of Divine Oduduru (20.22) and De Grasse (20.24).
World 400m champion Steven Gardiner was a clear winner of the second heat in 19.96 (1.0m/s). Josephus Lyles, Noah's younger brother, set a PB of 20.24 to finish second.
Olympic 400m champion Shaunae Miller-Uibo produced the other highlight of the meeting. The Bahamian sprinter stepped down to the 100m and smashed her PB in the heats with 11.03 before going even quicker in the final, stopping the clock at 10.98 (1.4m/s). She now becomes just the fourth woman in history to run sub-11 for 100m, sub-22 for 200m and sub-49 for 400m.
Seventeen-year-old Tamari Davis was second in 11.15, just 0.02 shy of her PB, while Aleia Hobbs won the other final in 11.16.
Miller-Uibo was back in action in Clermont on Saturday (26) to contest the 200m. The world 400m silver medallist was level with 2018 NCAA 400m champion Lynna Irby and hurdles specialist Jasmine Camacho-Quinn at half way, but, as is her style, pulled away in the final 50 metres to cross the line a comfortable winner in 21.98 (2.0m/s). Camacho-Quinn was second in a PB of 22.45, just 0.02 ahead of Irby.
In other international sprint action, double NCAA sprint champion Sha'Carri Richardson clocked a wind-assisted 10.79 (2.7m/s) in the 100m at the AP Ranch High Performance Invitational in Fort Worth. Meanwhile over in Kingston, Jamaica, double Olympic champion Elaine Thompson-Herah ran a wind-aided 10.73 (3.0m/s) over 100m.
Joseph and Mageen set national records in Bern
Swiss sprint hurdler Jason Joseph and Irish middle-distance runner Ciara Mageean broke national records at the Citius Champs meeting in Bern on Friday (24).
Joseph, the European U23 champion, clocked 13.34 into a -1.0m/s headwind to win the men’s 110m hurdles, taking 0.05 off the national record he set in 2018 and equalled in 2019.
Mageean, meanwhile, unleashed an impressive kick over the final 200 metres of the women’s 800m by more than a second in 1:59.69, becoming the first Irish woman to break two minutes for the distance. Norway’s Hedda Hynne was second in 2:00.72 with Renelle Lamote (2:01.50) and Selina Buchel (2:01.79) taking third and fourth.
One week after breaking the Dutch 400m hurdles record, 20-year-old Femke Bol switched to the flat and clocked a PB of 51.13 with 21-year-old compatriot Lieke Klaver finishing second in 51.39, also a PB. They now move to third and fifth respectively on the Dutch all-time list.
Elsewhere in Bern, Ajla del Ponte backed up her recent strong form with an 11.15 (1.9m/s) victory over 100m.
More records for Finnish hammer duo
After breaking the Finnish senior and U20 hammer records last month, Krista Tervo and Silja Kosonen returned to Somero on Saturday (25) and improved their respective marks.
Tervo once again came out on top, winning with 72.12m to add 19 centimetres to her own Finnish record. 17-year-old Kosonen was close behind with 71.34m, moving to second on the Finnish senior list and third on the world U20 all-time list. The only 17-year-old ever to throw farther is Poland’s 2000 Olympic hammer champion Kamila Skolimowska.
Aaron Kangas won the men’s competition with 77.82m, the best throw by a Finnish man for 11 years.
In Schoenebeck on Friday, German champion and world finalist Kristin Pudenz threw a PB of 65.58m to win the women’s discus from Claudine Vita (62.69m). Julia Harting was third with 61.16m, her farthest throw since returning to action after giving birth to twins last year.
Jon Mulkeen for World Athletics