Following Yohan Blake‘s astounding display of 19.26 secs over 200m at the Ivo van Damme Memorial in Brussels last week, who emerges in your view as (even slight) favourite to claim the much coveted men’s 200m crown in the Olympics next summer in London? As a matter of fact, it could well turn into those rare occasions where the longer sprint overshadows the 100m as there may turn up even four contenders that could surge inside 19.5 secs by the look of things.
Usain Bolt is heading towards the Games as reigning champion and world record holder with that 19.19 secs in Berlin two years ago, having showed to have lost none of his potency in defending his global title in 19.40 secs in Daegu, but Blake’s run the other day was really scary. He got a modest reaction to the gun (0.269) and his bend could have arguably been better executed but still that surge down the home straight was enough to take him just 0.07 secs shy of Bolt’s ultimate mark. Let alone, of course, that he has sparcely competed over the distance this season so there looks to be plenty of scope left for him!
Tyson Gay has yet to contest the event in a major championships since winning the world title in Osaka in 2007 and has been sparingly racing over the distance likewise but his ‘straight’ 19.41 secs in the streets of Manchester last year offers a glimpse over what he is capable of. Finally, Walter Dix shouldn’t be written off under any circumstances. He ran 19.53 secs in Brussels and could have drawn into the 19.4s had he not let up towards the line, where he also made a mistake of his own coming off the bend. Therefore, he has got a very good platform to build on towards faster times next season.