Gatlin wins 200m in blazing 19.57 at U.S. trials

Sun Jun 28, 2015 8:29pm EDT
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By Gene Cherry

EUGENE, Oregon - Controversial Justin Gatlin set the stage for a world championship showdown with Usain Bolt when he won the 200 meters in a blazing 19.57 seconds at the U.S. trials in Oregon on Sunday.

Only four people, including world record holder Bolt, have ever run faster than the 33-year-old, whose previous best was 19.68 seconds.

"I wanted to come out and make a statement, and that's what I did," said the fast starting Gatlin.

"I would say it's the most complete, technically 200m I ever ran," he added.

"A lot of people were asking me what could I run if I ran through the finish line, so obviously I went out there and ran 19.5 so I hope I can do better than that."

Gatlin was so exhausted he bent over after the race.

"It hurt," he said. "My body has never been there before.

But it felt great."   Continued...

Jun 28, 2015; Eugene, OR, USA; Justin Gatlin celebrates after winning the 200m in a meet record 19.57 in the 2015 USA Championships at  Hayward Field. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports