Decathlon world record tops wild US trials show
Ashton Eaton set a world record in the decathlon at the US Olympic Track and Field Trials on a wild on Saturday that also featured a dead heat for a London Olympic berth in the women’s 100 metres.
Eaton scored 9,039 points in the 10-event competition, breaking the old world mark of 9,026 set by Roman Sebrle, of the Czech Republic, in 2001 and shattering Dan O’Brien’s former US record of 8,891 from 1992.
“There are few words to say to describe it,” Eaton said.
“To have that score and what I did, it’s like I worked so hard to do that. It’s hard to explain.”
Eaton made himself the overwhelming favourite for the London Olympics by shaving more than four seconds off his personal best in the 1,500m, his fifth event and 10th over two days.
World champion Carmelita Jeter won the 100m in 10.92 to book her trip to London with Tianna Madison in second, but Allyson Felix and Jeneba Tarmoh finished in a dead heat for the third and final Olympic berth in 11.07 seconds.
After Tarmoh had been declared third by .001 of a second, meet officials consulted camera replays and changed the result to a dead heat, leaving USA Track and Field unsure how to break the deadlock for the last London spot.
Reigning Olympic champion Dawn Harper and Lolo Jones, who led at the Beijing final before stumbling over the penultimate hurdle, qualified for London in the 100 hurdles, as did Kellie Wells, who has this year’s top US time in the race.
Sanya Richards-Ross, seeking a 200-400 Olympic double with the world’s best times of 2012 in both events, advanced to the women’s 400m final.
Meanwhile, Justin Gatlin, who missed the 2008 Olympics with a doping ban, and Tyson Gay, a former world champion coming back after hip surgery, led round one of the men’s 100m ahead of last night’s semi-finals and final.