Andre De Grasse beaten in first race in nine months at Drake Relays

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Triple Olympic medalist Andre De Grasse looked rusty in his first race since July, finishing fourth in the Drake Relays 100m after a slow start on Saturday.

American Isiah Young won in 10.02 seconds, .01 ahead of countryman Mike Rodgers. De Grasse, who took 100m bronze and 200m silver in Rio, was fourth in 10.15 with a 1.9 meter/second tailwind.

“It was all about coming out healthy,” De Grasse told media in Des Moines, Iowa. “So I’m happy.”

De Grasse made Drake his comeback meet from a strained right hamstring that kept him from competing at the 2017 World Championships.

De Grasse is scheduled to race at the first two Diamond League meets this season the next two weeks in Doha and Shanghai with possible showdowns against Americans Justin Gatlin and Christian Coleman.

Full Drake Relays results are here.

Earlier Saturday, world-record holder Kendra Harrison won the 100m hurdles against a field that included two-time Olympic medalist Dawn Harper-Nelson. Harrison, whose world record is 12.20, clocked 12.37 with a 2.5 m/s tailwind, too much wind to make it a legal time.

Devon Allen, an Olympian and former Oregon wide receiver, won the 110m hurdles in 13.42, edging 2012 Olympic champion and world-record holder Aries Merritt by .03 into a headwind.

Olympic champ Ryan Crouser beat world champ Tomas Walsh of New Zealand in the shot put, throwing 22.01 meters. Walsh still owns the three best throws this season, with a top mark of 22.67.

On Friday night at Drake, Olympic 1500m bronze medalist Jenny Simpson shattered the American record for two miles by winning in 9:16.78.

Three-time Olympian Shannon Rowbury held the previous mark of 9:20.25 from 2014. The two-mile is not held at the Olympics or world championships.

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VIDEO: Justin Gatlin leads U.S. to win at Penn Relays

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Eliud Kipchoge sets next marathon

Eliud Kipchoge
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Eliud Kipchoge will race the London Marathon on April 26 before he is expected to defend his Olympic title in Japan on Aug. 9, which would mark the shortest break between marathons of his career.

Kipchoge, who in his last 26.2-mile effort became the first person to break two hours at the distance, won all four of his London Marathon starts, including breaking the course record in 2016 and 2019.

His time this past April 28 — 2:02:37 — is the third-fastest time in history. Kipchoge has the world record of 2:01:39 set at the 2018 Berlin Marathon. His sub-two-hour marathon in Vienna on Oct. 12 was not in a record-eligible race.

Kipchoge’s previous shortest break between marathons came in 2016, when he also ran London and the Olympics. The Olympics will be two weeks earlier in 2020 than in 2016.

Kipchoge, 35, has won 11 of 12 marathons since moving to road racing after failing to make Kenya’s 2012 Olympic track team.

He has yet to race the two most prestigious marathons in the U.S. — Boston and New York City — but has said they are on his bucket list.

MORE: Eliud Kipchoge opines on shoe technology debate

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Canadians become first female doubles luge team in World Cup

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WHISTLER, British Columbia (AP) — Caitlin Nash and Natalie Corless made luge history Saturday, becoming the first female team to compete in a World Cup doubles race.

The 16-year-olds from Whistler combined to finish 22nd in a field of 23 sleds, though that seemed largely irrelevant. There have been four-woman teams in what is typically called four-man bobsledding, but luge has never seen a pairing like this until now.

The German sled of Toni Eggert and Sascha Benecken won the race in 1 minute, 16.644 seconds. Germany’s Tobias Wendl and Tobias Arlt finished second and the Russian team of Vsevolod Kashkin and Konstantin Korshunov placed third for their first medal of the season.

The U.S. team of Chris Mazdzer and Jayson Terdiman placed 11th.

But the story was the Canadian teens, who qualified for the World Cup event on Thursday. They were nearly a half-second behind any other finisher and almost 2.7 seconds back of Eggert and Benecken. But they’ll forever be able to say that they were winning the race at one point — a technicality because they were the first ones down the hill at the Whistler Sliding Center, but accurate nonetheless.

The only sled they beat was the Italian team of Ivan Nagler and Fabian Malleier, who crashed in the second heat.

There are women’s singles and men’s singles races on the World Cup luge circuit, but there is no rule saying doubles teams must be composed of two men. There have been more female doubles racers at the junior level in recent years, and it was generally considered to be just a matter of time before it happened at the World Cup level.

That time became Saturday.

Canada had the chance to qualify a second sled into the doubles field because some teams typically on the circuit chose to skip this weekend’s stop, and Nash and Corless got into by successfully finishing a Nations Cup qualifying race on Thursday.

They were 11th in that race out of 11 sleds, more than a full second behind the winner and nearly a half-second behind the closest finisher. But all they had to do was cross the line without crashing to get into Saturday’s competition, and earned their spot in the luge history books as a result.

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