The best world record

Athletics Weekly - - Statistics -

FLORENCE Grif­fith-Joyner’s best 100m prior to 1988 was 10.96 but the Amer­i­can emerged in sus­pi­ciously fast form in the sum­mer. She im­proved to 10.89 prior to the US Cham­pi­onships but few could have pre­dicted what would hap­pen in In­di­anapo­lis.

Af­ter a wind-as­sisted 10.60 heat, in the quar­ter-fi­nals ‘Flo Jo’ was timed in a sen­sa­tional 10.49 (hand times of 10.3, 10.3 and 10.4 were recorded). Sec­ond was Di­ane Wil­liams in 10.88. The pre­vi­ous record was 10.76.

How­ever, while the wind read­ing was of­fi­cially 0.0m/sec, there was a strong wind that day and many be­lieve the read­ing was wrong.Yet, if there was a doubt over that 10.49, then her 10.70 semi-fi­nal and 10.61 fi­nal vic­tory would have been world records in­stead.

At the Olympics, Grif­fith-Joyner ran a le­gal 10.62 quar­ter-fi­nal and then a windy 10.70 semi and windy 10.54 in the fi­nal, where she won gold by three me­tres from pre­vi­ous record-holder Eve­lyn Ash­ford.

Re­sult: 1 Grif­fith-Joyner 10.49; 2 D Wil­liams 10.88; 3 G Dev­ers-Roberts 10.98; 4 C Guidry 11.11; 5 D Sow­ell 11,19; 6 A Thomp­son 11.35

Florence Grif­fith-Joyner: dom­i­nated in 1988

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