The world’s second-fastest man, America’s Tyson Gay, promises a men’s 100 meter competition at the London Olympics that will be “spectacular.”
After beating USA teammate Justin Gatlin, in the Diamond League meet in Paris over the weekend, Gay pointed to his 9.99 seconds victorious sprint on a wet track as confirmation that he is read to take on reigning Olympic double sprint champion Usain Bolt, who has showed is not unbeatable.
Bolt was taken down twice in the Jamaican trials by training partner and current world 100m champion Yohan Blake, and has now withdrawn from the July 20 meet in Monaco after picking up what his coach Glen Mills labelled a “slight” injury.
That intrigue can only add to what is building up to be one of the most competitive events in recent history.
“There are a lot of people now in the 100m, it is open for the Games,” said Gay, who claimed golds in the 100 and 200m at the 2007 worlds in Osaka.
“Bolt, Blake, Gatlin, my training partner (Keston) Bledman. It will be spectacular.”
Although Gay, whose 9.69 seconds is second only to Bolt’s world record of 9.58, recorded a good reaction time in Friday’s race, he wilted badly in the opening 15 meters to give Gatlin and France’s Christophe Lemaitre a headstart.
However, Gay proceeded to reel the duo in and flung himself at the finish line to nip Gatlin by four-hundredths of a second.
“I tried to be patient,” Gay acknowledged. “I’m strong mentally and ready for challenges. Trials was a faster race but here a better one for me technically.”
Gay said his confidence was growing after a slow return from a hip injury that required surgery.
“I feel pretty good, considering I came back and made the team. I was under a lot of stress, mentally and physically, early in the season, but I feel a lot better now,” he said.
Meanwhile, even after losing to Gay, Gatlin expressed no doubt about what he expects in the Games.
“I won the gold in Athens and the same thing should happen in London,” said the 30-year-old who came back from a four-year doping ban in May 2011.