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Gay sets season best

LONDON, August 14 – America's Tyson Gay followed up his Stockholm win over Usain Bolt by clocking the fastest 100m time this season in a blistering triumph at a rain-soaked London Diamond League meeting on Friday.Gay won in 9.78sec in miserable, damp conditions at Crystal Palace to easily see off Jamaica’s Yohan Blake (9.89sec) and Trinidad’s Richard Thompson (10.05sec).

"The last few weeks have been really great," said Gay, who sent Olympic champion and world record holder Bolt to a first defeat in two years in Stockholm last week.

Bolt refused on financial grounds to take part in London before then pulling out of the rest of the season with back pain. Former world record holder Asafa Powell pulled out of the meet earlier in the week, also because of a back injury.

Gay’s time on Friday eclipsed the previous best this season of 9.82sec, set by both Bolt and Powell.

"I wasn’t expecting to go that fast in these conditions but I knew I was in good shape and was going to go fast," Gay said.

"I think there’s more to come. It’s great to be on top of the world, that’s important to me. I wasn’t necessarily sending a message to Asafa and Usain, I was just running my own race."

Gay’s time was superb considering the conditions and he also finished the race with a groin complaint.

"I was hobbling a bit at the end – my groin is a little sore but I’m sure it’s OK," he said.

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"This is not the best shape I’ve ever been in because I’m still dealing with a few little injuries. My coach said that I can run 9.7 in any conditions and I think I showed that tonight."

Heavy rain came down just before the meet began, leaving the track drenched and causing problems for the early competitors.

The other highlight on the night was Priscilla Lopes-Schliep producing the fastest time in the world this year to win the 100m hurdles.

The Canadian crossed in 12.52sec to finish well clear of a strong field for a meeting record.

Australia’s Sally Pearson (12.61), who had been quickest out of the blocks, was second in 12.52 and Lolo Jones of the U.S. was third in 12.66.

Allyson Felix of the US grabbed her fifth Diamond League victory of the season with a comfortable success in the 200m, clocking 22.37sec.

It was Felix’s third 200m win – the other two have come in the 400m – and she has only lost once this year. Debbie Ferguson-McKenzie was second in 22.88 and Sherone Simpson ran 23.04 for third.

American Bershawn Jackson made sure he cannot be beaten in the Diamond Race in the 400m hurdles by winning a tight race in 48.12sec. Puerto Rico’s Javier Culson was a narrow second in 48.17.

Bernard Lagat disappointed the home crowd by finishing clear of Britain’s new double European champion Mo Farah in the 3000m.

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Lagat, who was born in Kenya but races for the US, timed his finish to perfection in the home straight to clock 7:40.36.

Farah, a winner of the 5,000m and 10,000m in the European Championships in Barcelona, was second in 7:40.75.

Blanka Vlasic remained on course for an unbeaten run in the Diamond Race for the women’s high jump by taking her sixth successive victory.

The Croatian leapt 2.01m to win by 10cm from Spain’s Ruth Beitia.

"By the end I couldn’t feel my legs it was so cold," said the slender Vlasic.

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