Athletics: Coleman world record highlights U.S. indoor champs
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[February 19, 2018]
(Reuters) - Christian Coleman
made sure the world record was his this time.
After being denied ratification last month for the fastest ever 60
meters when he clocked 6.37 seconds in a race that did not use
electronic starting blocks, the world outdoor silver medalist ran
even faster on Sunday.
Turning on the afterburners following his trademark fast start,
Coleman breezed home in 6.34 seconds at the U.S. indoor track and
field championships in Albuquerque, New Mexico.
The time wiped out Maurice Greene's 20-year-old record of 6.39
seconds, a mark almost matched by runner-up Ronnie Baker, who
crossed the line in 6.40 seconds.
"It feels like a blur," the 21-year-old Coleman told reporters when
asked to describe what it felt like to run that fast.
"My start was decent. When I transitioned, I stood up, and I felt as
good as I've ever felt. I just kept running to the tape. For it to
be the world record was pretty special."
The fastest man in the world last year time-wise, he took silver in
the 100m at last year's world championships in London, finishing
ahead of world record holder Usain Bolt.
Coleman will lead a talented American team to next month's world
indoor championships with the top-two finishers in each event in New
Mexico securing berths for Birmingham, England.
"I just love racing in the big races, when everybody's watching,"
Coleman said. "I just flourish in those moments. It's not really in
my personality, but when the lights are on, it just comes out."
Along with his world record, five other season-best performances
were established in the rarefied air of Albuquerque, which aids
sprinters but slows distance runners.
Chief among them was Sharika Nelvis's U.S. record 60m hurdles time
of 7.70 seconds as she defeated world outdoor record holder Kendra
Harrison by two-hundredths of a second.
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Christian Coleman (USA) poses after winning the 60m in 6.46 during
the New Balance Indoor Grand Prix at Reggie Lewis Center. Mandatory
Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports
Olympic and world long jump Brittney Reese gave the Americans
another big hope for gold in Birmingham, twice leaping 6.68m, the
best mark in the world this year.
Up-and-coming Katie Nageotte added another season-best in the pole
vault, soaring 4.91m to defeat world silver medalist Sandi Morris
(4.86m). Nageotte then made three unsuccessful attempts at a world
The women's 60m and 400m also produced the leading times of 2018.
Courtney Okolo (51.16) edged out Shakima Wimbley by one hundredth of
a second in the 400m and Javianne Oliver won the 60m in 7.02
Shelby Houlihan and Paul Chelimo added their second titles of the
meeting, winning the 1,500m in 4:13.07 and 3:42.91 respectively.
World indoor high jump champion Vashti Cunningham also qualified for
the team, with the daughter of former NFL quarterback Randall
Cunningham clearing 1.97m.
(Reporting by Gene Cherry in Salvo, North Carolina; Editing by John
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