American John Regis set a meet record of 20.54 in winning the 200 meters at the World Indoor Track and Field Championships Friday, but the happiest runner in the race was teammate Kevin Little, a junior at Drake University who got third place.
Regis broke the meet record of 20.73, set by American Kirk Baptiste two years ago in the first world championships at Indianapolis.
Brazil’s Robson da Silva finished second, but was disqualified for running out of his lane. That moved third-place finisher Ade Mafe of Britain to second and Little from fourth to third.
So how did Little feel? “Surprised! That’s the word,” he said.
Little, who never had run faster than 21.28 indoors, was timed in 21.22 in the first-round heats, 21.05 in the semifinals and 21.12 in the final.
Roger Kingdom won the 60-meter hurdles in 7.43, breaking the meet record of 7.46 set by Greg Foster in the semifinals at Indianapolis two years ago.
Britain’s Colin Jackson was second in 7.45. Tonie Campbell, the winner last year, finished last in a six-man field. He is suffering from tendinitis.
Nelli Cooman of the Netherlands, the world record-holder and five-time European champion in the women’s 60-meter dash, won her second world indoor title, leading all the way and clocking a meet record of 7.05. Cooman’s world record is 7.00.
Gwen Torrence ran 7.07 to finish second and break her own American record. Alice Brown set an American record of 7.13 last Sunday, but Torrence broke that in the semifinals here with a 7.10.
American sprinters Floyd Heard and Mark Witherspoon scratched from the men’s 60 meters, apparently at the suggestion of their coach, Joe Douglas of the Santa Monica Track Club. Douglas earlier kept many of his other athletes out of last weekend’s U.S. championships.