Kishane wins Olympic trials 100m in stunning world-leading time

The content originally appeared on: Jamaica News Loop News

Kishane Thompson continued his impressive form at the Jamaica Olympic trials, clocking a stunning world-leading and new lifetime best of 9.77 seconds to secure victory in the men’s 100m final on Friday night at the National Stadium. 

The time set a stadium record and was the fastest in the world in two years, securing Thompson’s unbeaten streak at the trials and his debut Olympic qualification.

Thompson eased up at the finish to beat Oblique Seville, who matched his personal best  time of 9.82 to finished second. Ackeem Blake completed the top three with a time of 9.92 seconds, also dipping below the 10-second mark.

Seville, who was fourth at the 2023 World Championships, was clocking 9.82 for the second time at the National Stadium this month. He also did so at the Racers Grand Prix on June 1 to defeat reigning world champion Noah Lyles of the USA.

Lyles won the U.S. Olympic trials 100m in 9.83 seconds last Sunday in Eugene, Oregon, tying his personal best time.

Thompson’s 9.77-second performance eclipsed his previous best of 9.82 seconds set in the first round on Thursday. Earlier in the semi-finals, Thompson had triumphed in 9.84 seconds.

The achievement places Thompson as the ninth-fastest man in history, a year after making headlines with a remarkable victory at the National Championships, where he had set a then personal best of 9.91 seconds. However, in a surprising twist, Thompson failed to appear for the semifinals, leaving spectators puzzled by his sudden withdrawal from the trials.

Thompson is also the fourth fastest Jamaican – behind Usain Bolt (9.58), Yohan Blake (9.69) and Asafa Powell (9.72).

“This year is the best I’ve ever been health-wise,” said the 22-year-old Thompson, who was racing for the first time since finishing fourth in the Wanda Diamond League final in Eugene in September.  “Running the three rounds at this championship has helped me better understand my body and the sport. I was never short on confidence, but I believe I have much more to do as I can run way faster. Deep down, I look forward to some great competition and nice vibes from the top sprinters.”

Thompson further said that he followed his coach Stephen Francis’s instructions. “My coach instructed me just to run the first 60 metres, nothing more, after that, shut it down,” he said. “If I came second or third, I would’ve made the team. The goal wasn’t to prove anything tonight, just run the 70 or 60 metres and see where I was.”

Thompson heads into the Olympics aiming to secure Jamaica’s first men’s 100m medal at a global championship since Usain Bolt’s final individual race at the 2017 World Championships.

Earlier, Deandre Watkin caused a major upset by breaking the 45-second barrier for the first time, winning the men’s 400m final in a new personal best 44.48 seconds. He defeated defending champion Sean Bailey, who clocked 44.65, and Jevaughn Powell, who finished in 44.79.