Los Angeles Times
Lyles sets U.S. mark in 200 sweep
Noah Lyles led wire to wire and routed the field in the 200 meters Thursday in 19.31 seconds, the thirdfastest time ever, to lead America’s second sprint sweep at the world championships in Eugene, Ore.
Lyles blew away U.S. teammates Kenny Bednarek by 0.46 seconds, with 18-year-old Erriyon Knighton finishing third.
The only two faster times are the 19.19 world record run by Usain Bolt in 2009, and a 19.26 two years later by another Jamaican, Yohan Blake. But the time that was most on Lyles’ mind was 19.32. That’s the American record set in 1996 by Michael Johnson and thought for decades to be unbeatable. When Lyles crossed the finish line, he put his finger over his lips — time to quiet all those who doubted him, a list that might include himself. It’s been a rough couple of years during which he battled mental health issues and the strain of competing in front of empty seats.
Then, Lyles checked the clock. It initially said 19.32, before adjusting down by 0.01. He gave it a dismissive wave. “I saw the time pop up and saw I tied Michael Johnson’s record. I was like ‘Really, you’re going to do me like that?’ ” Lyles said. “Then, that number changed from two to a one and my whole world changed.”
His victory came moments after Shericka Jackson gave the Jamaican women another gold in the sprints.
U.S. decathlon champion Garrett Scantling was banned for missed doping tests. The U.S. Anti-Doping Agency released news that Scantling was serving a provisional suspension that began Thursday — opening day for the decathlon —for a potential tampering violation.