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News14 Jun 2023

Top sprint clashes set for NYC Grand Prix


Noah Lyles and Fred Kerley (© Kevin Morris and SEIKO Golden Grand Prix)

World champions Fred Kerley and Noah Lyles will go head-to-head in the men’s 200m, Aleia Hobbs and Gabby Thomas will seek more sprint success, and the men’s 100m will offer a clash of world medallists when the World Athletics Continental Tour Gold heads to New York on 24 June.

Returning to the USATF NYC Grand Prix at the Icahn Stadium on Randall’s Island, Lyles will headline the men’s 200m. The 25-year-old has been a dominant figure in the discipline in recent years, having won world gold medals in both 2019 and 2022, the latter of which he claimed in 19.31, breaking Michael Johnson’s US record and moving to third on the world all-time list. Showing that he’s in excellent form, earlier this month Lyles ran a world-leading 19.67 in Kingston.

Challenging Lyles in the 200m will be Kerley, the world champion at 100m. In addition to the 100m gold he won in 2022, Kerley is also the 2019 world bronze medallist at 400m and is one of only three men to have run sub-10.00 for 100m, sub-20.00 for 200m and sub-44.00 for 400m. His lifetime best of 9.76 for 100m makes him the equal sixth-fastest man in history at the distance. Kerley opened his 2023 outdoor season with a win over 200m at the Maurie Plant Meet in Melbourne and followed that with victory over the same distance at the Doha Diamond League meeting in 19.92.

Leading the women’s sprints will be two of USA’s top athletes, Hobbs and Thomas. Hobbs won silver and gold medals at the Tokyo Olympic Games and World Championships in Oregon, respectively, as a member of USA’s 4x100m relay squads. This year, Hobbs got off to a sensational start, winning the US indoor 60m title in 6.94, breaking the US record that had stood for nearly 30 years.

Also a member of USA’s silver medal-winning relay team from Tokyo, Thomas is the Olympic bronze medallist at 200m and is the fourth-fastest woman in history. She recently won the 200m at the Paris Diamond League.

Michael Norman, Kenny Bednarek, Marvin Bracy-Williams and Christian Coleman all meet in the men’s 100m.

One of the most versatile sprinters in recent times, Norman will be making his first appearance at the USATF NYC Grand Prix in the men’s 100m. Norman won gold in both the 400m and 4x400m relay at last year’s World Athletics Championships. He also won gold in the 4x400m relays at both the 2019 World Championships and Tokyo Olympic Games and with lifetime bests of 9.86, 19.70 and 43.45, Norman joins Kerley as one of the three athletes to have dipped under 10, 20 and 44 seconds in the 100m, 200m and 400m, respectively.

Joining him in New York will be Olympic and world 200m silver medallist Bednarek, world 100m silver medallist Bracy-Williams, 2019 world 100m champion Coleman, Britain’s Zharnel Hughes and Akeem Blake of Jamaica.

Organisers for World Athletics