Jamaican sprint legend Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce posted the fastest 100m in the world this year as she clocked 10.67 seconds to win in Nairobi on Saturday.
The 35-year-old, who has won eight Olympic medals including silver in Tokyo last summer, was a comfortable winner after 18-year-old Namibian sensation Christine Mboma pulled up suddenly before collapsing to the track.
Fraser-Pryce’s winning time was close to her personal best of 10.60, set in Lausanne in August 2021.
“I have been doing this for 13 years. Even time I run I set new records, it’s incredible,” said Fraser-Pryce, who could only finish second in her season-opening 200m race in Kingston in April.
Only four other women have run the 100m faster than Fraser-Pryce’s time on Saturday – Americans Marion Jones (10.65) and Carmelita Jeter (10.64), fellow Olympic champion Elaine Thompson-Herah (10.54), and the controversial world record holder American Florence Griffith-Joyner (10.49).
Fraser-Pryce will renew her long rivalry with five-time Olympic gold medallist Thompson-Herah at this year’s world championships, which start in Eugene on July 15.
Earlier, men’s Olympic 100m champion Marcell Jacobs withdrew at the last minute from his long-awaited return to the distance with intestinal problems.
The Italian, who was a surprise winner at last year’s Olympics, was due to go head-to-head with silver medallist Fred Kerley for the first time since Tokyo.
Jacobs confirmed on social media he would next be in action as planned on home soil in a 200m race in Savona.
Instead, Kerley lost to home runner Ferdinand Omanyala, who powered to victory in 9.85secs, also a world-leading time.
American Kerley could only manage 9.92secs to finish behind African record holder Omanyala, who clocked his personal best of 9.77secs last year.
“I was aiming to run a sub-10 in this competition. Now that have… my African record, I want to add more records to my collection,” said Omanyala.
The United States’ Isaiah Young was third in 10.13secs.
Canadian Aaron Brown timed his 200m to perfection to post a season-opening best 20.05secs.
“I wanted to run a sub-20,” he said.
“I am happy with the time I have posted considering this is a high altitude.”
Niger’s Aminatou Seyni was the shock winner of the women’s 200m race, in 22.43secs, after edging out Shannon Ray on the line.
Kenya’s Olympic and world 3,000m steeplechase champion Conseslus Kipruto showed he still has a lot to do ahead of the world championships as he faded badly to finish fifth in a race won by Abraham Kibiwott.
Poland’s women’s hammer world-record holder Anita Wlodarczyk posted a world-leading 78.06m in her first appearance in Kenya.
“I am very happy that I came to Nairobi for the first time and did really well,” the three-time Olympic champion said.