Michael Norman became 400m world champion

A year after his Olympic dreams faded along with his strength in the final meters in Tokyo, Michael Norman On Friday night, he lost to the world’s best quarter-mile runners for the gold medal in the 400 meters at the World Championships in Athletics, overtaking a tight group of contenders in the last 100 meters to the roar of raucous Hayward fields.

Norman, who was a record breaking star at Vista Murrieta High School and USCfinished in 44.29 seconds and filled the only significant gap on his young resume with a world championship win.

Grenada’s Kirani James took silver with a time of 44.48, Britain’s Matthew Hudson-Smith took bronze, with American champion Allison in fourth place.

Norman’s title continued US men’s sprint dominance, one night after a 200m medal draw and six days after another 100m win.

Furious off the track, Norman was stoic during his introduction, raising his arms above his head to answer loud cheers but with a stern expression. However, with one step to go, he raised his hands again, this time allowing his smile to widen.

In an interview on the track, he called his last three years “a tough, challenging journey”.

Michael Norman celebrates winning the 400m on July 22, 2022 in Eugene, Oregon.

Michael Norman, who finished a disappointing fifth at last summer’s Olympics, celebrates victory in the 400 meters.

(Ashley Landis/Associated Press)

Norman has been one of the world’s fastest 200m and 400m runners since he was a senior in 2016, but he has yet to turn the promise of his college record into serious individual achievement at the World Championships or the Olympics, stages where elite athletics judge. In each case, he could identify a clear cause. But it was not in his fifth place. Tokyo Olympics last summer.

His training in the months leading up to Tokyo did not go well, as Norman and his father Michael showed anxiety from the first training session. This did not ease the Olympic sting.

“A devastating moment,” said Norman.

Since then, everything in his training, he said in May, has been aimed at atoning for Eugene in front of the first American crowd to watch the World Cup outdoors. After the title, Norman rushed to his father and trainer Quincy Watts.

Friday also brought the unexpected. American Cara Winger, who finished fifth in the javelin throw and reached her final throw, made a 210-foot-1 throw that took her to silver. She covered her face knowing that at 36 she had earned her first medal at a World Championship or Olympics. The Washington native was greeted by a large group of fans as she looked for a flag to carry around the track.

Kara Winger celebrates after winning the silver medal in the javelin throw at the World Championships on July 22, 2022.

American Kara Winger, 36, rejoices after winning a silver medal in the javelin throw at the World Championships.

(Gregory Bull/Associated Press)

Even more stunning was that at least one more race, Allison Felix retirement is delayed. A week after she won a bronze medal in the 1600m medley relay, which she and U.S. officials said was the last of her illustrious career, the sprinter who broke out of Los Angeles Baptist nearly two decades ago will compete in semi-finals of the women’s 1600m relay. Saturday. Officials asked if she would run, and she couldn’t turn down the opportunity, Felix told The Associated Press.

Friday brought no surprises in the qualifying heats of the 400m relay. The Americans advanced to Saturday’s final in 41.56 seconds – 43 hundredths of a second faster than the second-fastest British qualifier – despite Jenna Prandini passing the baton with both hands after a fast-paced third stage to runner Twanisha Terry.

The American men, Jekyll and Hyde in the short relay for two decades, will also enter Saturday with the fastest qualifying time after a smooth first pass between Christian Coleman and Noah Liles, two members of the 2019 gold medal winning team, Elijah said. Hall and Marvin Bracey-Williams could finish with a world-leading time of 37.87 seconds. There is no guarantee that this line-up will make it to Saturday’s final, in which the US will take part as the clear favorite for gold. Lyles’ stage on Friday was his fourth race in five days, but 24 hours after he set the American record in the 200m, he said with a big smile that he “woke up well today.”

According to Bracey-Williams, the Americans’ clean run was the result of trust and practice in the “relay camp.” Their training was not limited to broadcasts. During the interview, Lyles sang a part of Meek Mill’s “Dreams and Nightmares”—a title that, given the history of the United States at the event, seemed apt.

“I used to pray for times like this,” Lyles said, pointing to teammates who responded, “to rhyme like that, so I had to rub like that to shine like that!”

They will have the opportunity to prove themselves on Saturday. Because Friday belonged to Norman.