Notes From Zurich Diamond League: Yohan Blake & Kirani James Impress

Daegu was no fluke for Yohan Blake (Reuters/Ruben Sprich)

Weltklasse Zurich, the meet known to attract the world’s best post-major championships, delivered once again on Thursday.  Some thoughts from the day’s events:

  • Yohan Blake proved to be a worthy world champion with his win in personal best time of 9.82 seconds.  False start not withstanding, Blake may be the only sprinter in the world capable of challenging Usain Bolt at the Olympic Games next summer.
  • Carmelita Jeter once again defeated fellow Angeleno Allyson Felix over 200 meters.  This time the duo went one-two with Jeter winning in 22.27 seconds and Felix runner-up in 22.40 seconds.  After her tough double in Daegu, Felix is already speculating about her plans for next year.  Speaking to Philip Hersh of the Chicago Tribune, Felix says the 200-400 double is still on the table but so is a foray into the 100 meters to help her sharpen up for the 200.  It’s still a long way until she has to decide at the 2012 Trials so all discussion now is fairly meaningless.
  • Kirani James showed his Daegu performance wasn’t a fluke and cemented himself as the world’s number one quarter-miler by defeating Lashawn Merritt, Jermaine Gonzales and others in a PR of 44.36 seconds.  Ato Boldon pointed out no non-American has ever broken 44 seconds in the 400 meters but the 18 year old Grenadian could very well be the first.
  • Sally Pearson continued her utter dominance of the 100 meter hurdles, this time defeating a world-class field by nearly three-tenths of a second.  The Aussie stormed off from the gun and immediately established a lead against her opponents, a margin that only grew with her blistering top-end speed.
  • Long distance queen Vivian Cheruiyot had her closest call of the season as Texas Tech grad and Oregon Track Club athlete Sally Kipyego challenged the double world champ to the finish.  Ultimately Cheruiyot held on to win in 14:30.10, about three-tenths ahead of Kipyego’s 14:30.42, an eight second personal best for her.  Kipyego had previous talked about making the switch to U.S. citizenship but she has now run the times and earned the hardware to compete for any nation in the world.
  • First Asafa Powell missed Worlds due to a groin injury but quickly recovered in time big appearance fees at post-Daegu meets.  Now the pattern of Jamaicans’ mysterious injuries during Worlds followed by quick recoveries continues.  Kaliese Spencer performed poorly in Daegu due to a reported groin injury but bounced back to defeat world champ Lashinda Demus and Melaine Walker in Zurich.  Interesting to say the least.

For full results from Zurich, click here.

Just a few major competitions remain in the summer season.  Rieti and Berlin run back-to-back days on Saturday and Sunday (September 10 and 11) while Zagreb will take place on Tuesday, September 13.  The final Diamond League meeting will be in Brussels on Friday, September 16.

Topics: Diamond League, Zurich

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