After a week filled with intrigue, dramatic upsets, ventilation issues, timing malfunctions, untimely withdrawals, injuries, and even traffic accidents, the dust finally settled, and the American stands as the champion of both the 100m and 200m events.
Noah Lyles also earns the distinction of being the first American since Tyson Gay in 2007 to accomplish this prestigious feat, joining Justin Gatlin (2005) and Maurice Greene (1999) in this esteemed club.
To further emulate Bolt’s achievements, he’s also the only other athlete, besides Bolt, to secure a three-peat in the event.
What did Noah Lyles say about his 200m victory?
“It’s different for the 100m; the 100 is fun,” Noah Lyles expressed during a post-race press conference. “The 200m is personal to me. This is where I excel; this is where I learned how to race and where I’ve faced my toughest competitors.”
Heading into the final on Friday, Noah Lyles not only held the title of the “World’s Fastest Man” from his 100m victory but also possessed the world’s fastest time in the 200m (19.47). He justified this status by breezing through the semifinals with a time of 19.76.
The two-time reigning world champion and American record holder (19.31) hasn’t been shy about aiming for greatness in sprinting history. Prior to the Budapest games, he boldly stated his ambitions to clock 9.65 in the 100m and break Bolt’s 200m record of 19.19 with a time around 19.10.
Though he expressed some disappointment with his times (he also fell short in the 100m with a 9.83), Lyles remains appreciative of his achievements.
“Naturally, I wanted it to be faster. I was hoping to at least break the American record again; I still believe I have the ability to,” Lyles stated. “After my sixth race, still clocking 19.5, I can’t be unhappy with that.”
Who was second to Noah Lyles in the men’s 200m?
Starting from Lane 6, Noah Lyles faced most of his competitors ahead of him. Fellow Americans Kenny Bednarek and Erriyon Knighton, who also shared the podium with Lyles in Eugene, occupied lanes 7 and 8. Botswanan Lestile Tebogo, fresh off his 100m silver, was in lane 9, while British Champion Zharnel Hughes, who secured bronze behind Lyles in the 100, took lane 4.
As soon as the starting gun went off, all four favorites had similar reactions, resulting in an even start around the curve.
On the straightaway, Lyles’ championship experience came to the forefront as he gradually pulled away from the pack. Knighton and Tebogo engaged in a fierce battle for the silver medal.
Knighton ultimately won the battle of the world junior stars, securing second place in 19.75 seconds, while Tebogo claimed bronze in 19.81 seconds. Zharnel Hughes finished fourth in 20.02, and Bednarek took fifth place with a time of 20.07.
In the women’s competition, amidst Shericka Jackson’s record-breaking performance in 21.41 seconds, two more Americans found themselves on the podium. Gabby Thomas and Sha’Carri Richardson clocked times of 21.81 and 21.92, respectively, with the latter achieving a personal best.
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