Noah Lyles and a bevy of U.S. sprint test themselves five months before the Tokyo Olympics at the New Balance Indoor Grand Prix, live on NBC on Saturday from 4-6 p.m. ET.
The annual indoor meet is usually held at the Reggie Lewis Center in Boston. But it’s currently a mass coronavirus vaccination site, so the Ocean Breeze Athletic Complex on Staten Island in New York City hosts this year.
Athletes usually start their calendar years with indoor meets in January, February and early March. But significant competitions like the Millrose Games and the USATF Indoor Championships were canceled due to the pandemic, leaving the New Balance Grand Prix as the most prestigious meet on the winter calendar.
The entry lists back that up.
Lyles, favored to sweep the Olympic 100m, 200m and 4x100m in Tokyo, is entered in his trademark 200m and the 60m on Saturday.
The 60m is more tantalizing, with the field also including Trayvon Bromell, who last year re-established himself as an Olympic 100m medal contender after years of injuries.
Other notable matchups: Michael Norman, the world’s fastest 400m runner in this Olympic cycle, takes on training partner Rai Benjamin, the world silver medalist in the 400m hurdles.
In the women’s 400m, Olympic champion Shaunae Miller-Uibo of the Bahamas takes on 2017 World champion Phyllis Francis and Wadeline Jonathas, the top American at the 2019 Worlds in fourth place.
The last two U.S. women’s 100m champions — Teahna Daniels and Aleia Hobbs — take on promising Jamaican 18-year-old Briana Williams in the 60m.
Other American stars include 2019 World champion Donavan Brazier (800m), 2017 World 3000m steeplechase champion Emma Coburn (two miles), 100m hurdles world-record holder Keni Harrison (60m hurdles), world 400m hurdles silver medalist Sydney McLaughlin (60m hurdles, 500m) and Olympic silver medalist Sandi Morris (pole vault).
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