EUGENE, Ore. (AP) - Tyson Gay got quite a fright in his first
race Saturday. He set a record in his second.
Gay broke Maurice Greene's American mark in the 100 meters by
running 9.77 seconds in his quarterfinal at the U.S. Olympic track
and field trials.
That ties for the fourth-fastest time in the history of the
event, even though Gay clearly eased up a bit over his final few
strides. Still, that was nothing compared what he did in his
opening heat earlier in the day, when Gay came awfully close to a
After building a big lead, the reigning world champion eased up
a lot with about 30 meters left - so much that the rest of the
field began to catch him. Gay was forced to accelerate again and he
lunged across the finish line in fourth place, good enough to
"The first round I was scared. I almost started crying. I
didn't know if I made it," Gay said after bettering the record
Greene set in 1999. "This round I felt good."
As well he should. This performance had to be a big boost of
confidence for Gay, who was a distant second - a spectator, really
- in New York on May 31, when Jamaica's Usain Bolt broke the world
record by clocking 9.72.
(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)