BUDAPEST — As Noah Lyles headed into the world championships 200-meter final, his coach Lance Bruman had a few divisions.
“Next time I see you, you’ll be a three-time 200-meter world champion,” Brauman said.
He proved Bruman on Friday night. Lyles came off the curve and finished in 19.52 seconds to win by 23 hundredths over 19-year-old American Erion Knighton. Botswana’s Letzile Deboko, 20, followed up her 100m silver with a 200m bronze.
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Lyles, 26, went into the worlds hoping to break Usain Bolt’s world record of 19.19. A year ago, he won the 200m in 19.31, breaking Michael Johnson’s American record to become the third fastest man in history.
“Of course I wanted to be faster. I wanted to at least break the American record again,” Lyles said. “I still believe I have the talent. This is after my sixth race still running 19.5 so I can’t be upset.
Lyles puts things into perspective. It was the first time she ran both the 100m and 200m at the World Championships, making six races over seven days.
Brauman noted the intense heat throughout the week.
Lyles returned to the Olympics – where he went in as the favorite and ran 19.74 for bronze.
“After the incident in Tokyo, I said I don’t believe it Worthy Just have to win,” he told NBC Sports’ Louis Johnson. “You take the win. Today I had to take that win again. Just because I won two years in a row doesn’t mean it’s mine.”
Lyles brought home his first world championship in 2019, when he won in 19.83.
“I couldn’t watch that race for months because I was so disappointed in myself [for the time],” he said. “But years later, I look back on that race and think, wow, I actually did it. I did it young and I was going up against big fields. It was a tough World Championship then.
In 2015, Lyles became the first man since Bolt to win the world sprint doubles title. On Saturday, he is expected to compete in the US men’s 4x100m relay, bidding to break Bolt’s record of three golds at the 2015 worlds (and 2013 and 2009).
Eventually, he and Bruman would return to Clermont, Florida. They will reflect on the season, particularly how well his training cycles prepared him for the sprint double, which he hopes to repeat in Paris.
“We hit it at the right time,” said Bruman, who previously coached 100m-200m stars Veronica Campbell-Brown, Tyson Kay and Tori Bowie. “We’ll look at the program and see if there’s anything you can tweak, but for now, I mean, the program is coming together pretty well.”
On Friday, Jamaican Sherica Jackson became the women’s 200m champion, this time clocking 21.41 seconds, the second fastest in history. Jackson, 29, is a 400m runner until 2021.
Only Florence Griffith-Joyner’s world record of 21.34 in 1988 was faster (with 1.2 m/s more tailwind than Jackson). Jackson won last year’s title in 21.45, which was 2nd in history.
Jackson later said 1) he was feeling “under the weather” for Friday’s final and 2) he wrote twice on his pipe: 21.40 and a faster time that he declined to reveal at a press conference. However, a quote provided by World Athletics said Jackson was “21.2 something”.
“Once I have a good race, I’ll definitely get there,” Jackson said of the world record.
Americans Gabby Thomas and Shakari Richardson won silver (21.81) and bronze (21.92).
Olympic bronze medalist Thomas watched last year’s world 200m final at Hayward Field. He missed the team in that event with a grade-two hamstring tear 12 days before the USA Track and Field Outdoor Championships.
Richardson, this week’s 100m gold medalist, became the first American woman since Carmelita Jeter in 2011 to win both the 100m and 200m medals at the same worlds. Richardson ran the fastest times of his career in both finals.
Venezuela’s Yulimar Rojas won his fourth straight world title in the triple jump, pulling it off on his final jump to move up from eighth place.
Rojas, undefeated since his Tokyo Olympic title, avoided elimination after six jumps out of four in the tiebreaker.
Rojas’ jump of 15.08 meters denied Ukrainian Marina-Pek Romanchuk her country’s first world outdoor title in any event since 2013.
Haruka Kitaguchi won the javelin in her final throw to become the first Japanese woman to win a world title in any event since the Hiromi Suzuki Marathon in 1997.
The worlds continue Saturday, with the 5000m featured on CNBC, NBCSports.com, NBC Sports App and the Peacock, as Kenya’s Faith Gibikon became the first woman to sweep the 1500m and 5000m at a worlds.
Jackson broke the championship record in the women’s 200m
Jamaica’s Sherica Jackson broke the 200m championship record and ran the second-fastest time in history (21.41) to become world champion again ahead of Americans Gabby Thomas and Shagaree Richardson.
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