Elaine Thompson produced her best effort of 2017 to win the women’s 200m dash on Saturday night at the Jamaica Invitational.
Thompson, the Rio Olympic Games sprint double champion, ran 22.09 seconds, the joint fastest time in the world this year. She now shares the mark with Americans Deajah Stevens and Tori Bowie.
“My race plan was to get off the corner as early as possible and then control my race and take it from there,” the 24-year-old Thompson said.
“It’s all about winning and perfecting the technique and execution.
Trailing Thompson across the line was Shericka Jackson, the World and Olympic 400m bronze medallist, in 22.61
After close to four years of virtual inactivity at the highest level, Yohan Blake, the 2011 world champion, was also at his best for this seasons. He got a very good start and led them all across the finish line in 9.93secs.
“I am feeling great,” said the 27-year-old Blake, who was a late entry.
“This is my first 100m of the season and to run 9.93 is great.”
Americans Ronnie Baker, 9.98secs and Mike Rodgers, 10.02, were second and third respectively.
Morolake Akinosun of the United States edged out Trinidad and Tobago’s Michelle-Lee Ahye as both were credited with the same time – 11.06.
Allyson Felix, in her first race of 2017, finished third in 11.07.
Canadian Andre De Grasse topped the men’s 200m in 20.14secs ahead of United States’ LaShawn Merritt, 20.28secs and Great Britain’s Zharnel Hughes, 20.29secs.
“I went out there and executed the first 150 metres then held on. It was a tough run. I wanted to check my fitness,” he said.
“Now I have to get back to training because this was tough.”
Novlene Williams-Mills, who fought gallantly in the homestretch, set a new meet record, 50.54secs, to win the women’s 400m, just ahead of American Phyllis Francis, 50.66secs. Jamaicans Stephenie Ann McPherson, 51.20 and Anneisha McLaughlin-Whilby, 51.45, were fourth and fifth respectively.
Demish Gaye, who looked as if he was out of it entering the straight, found extra gear and powered home in 45.08secs for the men’s equivalent win. Belgium’s Kevin Borlee, who was among the leading pack, faded in 45.72 while American Tony McQuay got third in 45.73.
Martin Manley, who led the field up to the last 70 metres, ended fifth in 46.09.
Aleec Harris cleared his hurdles cleanly to take the top spot in the men’s 110m obstacle race in 13.22, just ahead of fellow American Devon Allen 13.28.
The women’s 100m hurdles lived up to expectations, and in the end, Sharika Nelvis was the first to cross the line in 12.64 ahead of meet record holder and fellow American Jasmin Stowers, 12.68.
Jamaica’s World champion Danielle Williams, 12.78 took the other podium position.
Columbian Catherine Iberguen Mena, 14.43m won the women’s triple jump over Shanieka Ricketts (JAM), 13.69m.
Lavern Spencer of St. Lucia won her second high jump in four days, clearing 1.90m for the top spot here over Canadian Alyxandr Treasure, who achieved the same height.
Sam Kendricks moved the men’s pole vault record from 5.60m to 5.80m.