Thursday, August 20, 2009

Blame it on Usain--19.19 in Berlin!

BERLIN, Germany--Once again, Usain Bolt of Jamaica (left/photo by Paul Merca) shocked the world with 19.19 seconds that may define his status as one of the world's greatest athletes, with his dash to history, and skipping the 19.2 barrier in the process.

With nearly every seat at the Olympiastadion taken, the Jamaican sensation set his second world record of these world championships, taking the title over 200 meters.

While speaking to track-side interviewers after his victory lap, he said: "It wasn't a good race, but it was a fast one."

Indeed it boiled down to a race between Bolt and the clock, and his winning margin of 0.62 seconds is by far the biggest in World Championships history.

In the non-Usain Bolt portion of the meet, Washington State graduate Bernard Lagat opened his title defense at the IAAF World Track & Field Championships at the Olympiastadion in Berlin over 5000 meters with a solid fourth place finish, running 13:23.73.

Lagat's finish, one day removed from a third place finish in the 1500 meters, earned him a spot in the finals, which will be held Sunday, the final day of the nine-day competition at 4:25 pm, local time (7:25 am, Seattle time).

Afterwards, Lagat did not speak to members of the media waiting in the mixed zone, opting to consult with members of the USA Track & Field medical staff.

In Friday's competition, former Renton High School and University of Washington standout Aretha Thurmond throws in the finals of the women's discus at 8:20 pm Berlin time (11:20 am in Seattle).

For more information on the IAAF World Track & Field Championships, please visit

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