His 10.02 clocking in the heats on Friday whetted the appetite for something special, and in the 100m final on Saturday (29) at the Texas Relays, USA’s Trayvon Bromell did not disappoint, equalling the world junior record* of 10.01.
The 18-year-old Baylor University student has run faster before, having clocked 9.99 last year at altitude and with the significant assistance of a 4.0m/s tailwind.
But this time his world-leading 10.01 clocking was achieved with the perfectly legal wind reading of 1.5m/s.
It was also his first 100m competition of the year and improved his pre-2014 wind-legal PB by more than a quarter of a second, having clocked 10.02 (0.9m/s) in yesterday’s heats.
Bromell, the reigning US junior 100m champion, has also impressed this year over the longer sprint, clocking a wind-assisted 20.23 last week at the TCU Invitational in Fort Worth, Texas.
But this latest performance has now catapulted him into the spotlight ahead of this year’s IAAF World Junior Championships, which is being held on home soil.
Three other junior athletes have previously clocked 10.01, although only one of those marks – Darrel Brown’s performance in 2003 – have been ratified as an official world junior record.
USA’s Jeffery Demps registered the same mark in 2008 but it couldn’t be ratified as a record as there was no ‘zero control’ test at the start of the competition. Japan’s Yoshihide Kiryu also tied the same mark last year, but wasn’t ratified as a mechanical wind gauge was used.
Nevertheless, both of those marks are still valid performances and still appear on the world junior all-time list.
In Bromell’s race today in Austin, on a day when many other races were wind-assisted, the top five athletes set lifetime bests. Reggie Lewis finished a distant second in 10.15, just one hundredth ahead of Tevin Hester.
World leads in the throws by Crouser and Dacres
There were several other good marks across the four days of competition at the Texas Relays. Ryan Crouser, the 2009 world youth champion, set a lifetime best of 21.27m to win the shot put.
The reigning NCAA champion indoors and out opened with 19.53m, then improved to 20.84m in the second round. But he saved his best for his last effort as he sent the shot flying out to 21.27m, adding 18cm to his previous PB.
Another former world youth champion, Jamaica’s Fedrick Dacres, also jumped to the top of the early-season 2014 world lists. The 2011 world youth and 2012 world junior discus champion continued his great transition to the senior weight implement in his first year as a senior athlete.
The 20-year-old led from the outset, opening with 63.30m, and then produced the three best marks of his life in the final three rounds, throwing 65.12m, 66.75m and 65.94m.
Dacres’ winning mark is just 40cm shy of the Jamaican record set two years ago by Jason Morgan. His three best marks were also superior to Julian Wruck’s best throw of the competition as the two-time NCAA champion managed 65.01m in a competition where six men surpassed the 60-metre line.
One day after setting a PB in the shot, Crouser did likewise in the discus; his 60.76m being good enough for fifth place.
Kendra Harrison, a finalist in both the 100m hurdles and 400m hurdles at last year’s NCAA Championships, got her 2014 outdoor campaign off to a great start. After a wind-legal 12.94 in the heats of the 100m hurdles, the 21-year-old was denied a potential huge lifetime best of 12.68 in the final as the wind reading was an agonising 2.1m/s, just over the legal limit.
In one of the few other wind-legal races of the final day, NCAA champion Ameer Webb won the 200m in a close finish from 2005 world silver medallist Wallace Spearmon, 20.38 to 20.39. For Webb it was his fastest ever season opener over his specialist distance.
World junior bronze medallist Shelbi Vaughan won the discus with 60.61m, finally breaking the lifetime best she set two years ago to win the 2012 national junior title.
The 60-metre line was also surpassed in the javelin by US record-holder Kara Patterson. Competing in her first competition of 2014, the 27-year-old won comfortably with her first-round effort of 60.45m, her best mark since the 2012 US Olympic Trials.
World University Games champion Sam Kendricks cleared the second-best height of his career in the pole vault, winning with a world-leading 5.70m. He cleared all of his heights at the first time of asking, but ended the competition with three failures at a would-be PB of 5.82m.
Logan Cunningham also cleared 5.70m to win the ‘Olympic Development’ pole vault competition, a 17-centimetre improvement on his previous best.
World youth pole vault finalist Desiree Freier continued where she left off from the indoor season, setting a PB of 4.35m to go to second on the US junior all-time list. Like Bromell, she too could be a contender at this year’s World Junior Championships.
Jon Mulkeen for the IAAF
*subject to the usual ratification procedures.