Tyson Gay started this season the same way he started last season, with a 400 PR at the Tom Jones Memorial Classic at the University of Florida. Running in his “training” event Gay went toe to toe with US Olympic relay team member Calvin Smith and World 400 finalist Renny Quow with stellar results as he and Smith set new PR’s. Calvin Smith took the win in a world leading 44.81. Smith’s PR was also a collegiate leader giving Florida another collegiate sprint leader (Teammate Jeff Demps leads the 100 at 10.11).
Right with Smith at the wire, however, was former 100/200 World Champion (Osaka “07) Tyson Gay with his own PR of 44.89 – making him #4 on this year’s current 400 list! Last year Gay opened at 46.34 before setting his previous best of 45.57. Gay then opened over 200 meters in 19.58 before opening in the 100 at 9.75w. Tyson suffered from groin issues through most of last year, however, though he improved his 100 AR to 9.71 and 9.69 and won silver in the event in Berlin. Gay had the groin repaired during the off season and today’s race sends a message to the world that Tyson may be more fit than ever. And if last year is any indication we should see new bests this season in the 100 and 200.
Also sending a message today was host Florida. Along with Smith’s world and collegiate leader they ran two 4x1 squads winning in 39.06 over their own “B” squad’s 39.31 with Kentucky a well back 39.82. Florida is the defending National Champion in the event and clearly have the horses to go for another title. They also had wins all over including the 100 (Demps 10.22), long jump (Taylor 24’ 7.75”),
Meanwhile on the other side of the country Oregon was making short work of UCLA with an easy 92 – 71 victory. Lead by super decathlete Ashton Eaton’s 10.52/21.03 sprint double Oregon notched wins all over the track and field for the win. Ironically former Bruin hurdle recruit David Klech, won today’s high jump for the Ducks with a PR 7’ 0.5”. At any rate, Oregon and Florida seem to be on a collision course for NCAA supremacy. They will be interesting to watch as the season progresses.
Likewise Tyson Gay seems to be on a collision course with spiriting history and Usain Bolt. For the record Tyson’s race today makes him the first sprinter in history to run sub 9.70, sub 19.60 and sub 45.00!
Still a lot of track and field going on all over the country. Should be more to talk about by morning.