Tyson Gay put on another strong but not unchallenged display of speed as the inaugural Samsung League Diamond League series came to an end at the Belgacom Memorial Van Damme in Brussels tonight (27).
Gay holds off Carter to take 100m Trophy
Despite the unseasonable chill and wet track, another sell-out crowd of 47,000 fans at King Baudouin Stadium were treated to the season’s second fastest 100m run courtesy of Gay who for the second consecutive meeting simply defied the conditions. In London 14 days ago, the former double World champion beat the rain and cold with a world-leading 9.78 performances. The conditions weren’t much better in the Belgian capital but the result was nearly the same, a 9.79 clocking which secured the Diamond Race Trophy for the American.
“I was pleased with my time but not with my race,” said Gay, whose next 100m outing is set for Wednesday’s IAAF World Challenge meeting in Zagreb. “I didn’t execute my start well. I was very please with my last 30 metres.”
There was a bit of drama just before the start, when the runners were called back by an apparent false start. The culprit was actually a slipped starting block.
“Everyone was pulled up, I think somebody’s block slipped,” Gay said. “The camera stayed on me which made me a bit nervous but I knew I hadn’t false started.”
Gay was clearly a half step ahead of the field by 60 metres en route to his sixth career sub-9.80, but was chased to the line by Jamaican Nesta Carter who improved his personal best by a notch to 9.85.
“At about 50 or 60 metres I was still ahead of Gay, that gave me wings,” said Carter, who clocked 9.86 19 days ago.
Yohan Blake also dipped under 10 seconds, clocking 9.91 for third.
Gay was one of 16 athletes to collect the remaining Diamond Race Trophies and $40,000 cash prizes at this second of two Samsung Diamond League finals. A steady rain early in the evening, and cool conditions throughout affected some of the action on the track and in the infield, but with more than half a dozen series titles on the line, action across the programme was as dramatic as it was intense. Particularly in the meeting’s most anticipated face-off, the second of the season between David Rudisha and Abubaker Kaki the men’s 800m.