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LetsRun.com's 2009 IAAF Berlin World Championships Preview
Women's 200m - Felix Looking To Extend Amazing World Winning Streak
When: August 21 (finals), 20 (semis), 19 (quarters and prelims)
When Allyson Felix is firing on all cylinders, watch out! Everything clicked for Felix on July 31st in Stockholm as she kicked her season into high gear with a 21.88 non-wind-aided 200m in Olympic Stadium. Her time was just off her personal best run back in 2007 of 21.81. In the women's 200m, running 22-mid or 22-low is an excellent, world-class performance. Running under 22 is absolutely rare territory.
Perhaps we shouldn't be surprised by Felix's burst. When it comes to odd-numbered years, Felix has typically elevated her game. In 2007, Felix was totally dominant at the Osaka World Championships, winning the 200m, 4 x 100m and 4 x 400m gold medals. Her 400m legs both in Osaka and Beijing were truly outstanding.
In 2005 in Helsinki, Felix became the first teenager to win an individual IAAF World Championships event when she won her specialty, the 200m. More of a 200m/400m hybrid, Felix often will go unnoticed by the race announcers for the first turn of the race, before running the best last 100m to win the race. Just check out the video from Helsinki below to see what we're talking about.
A win (or three) this year would only add to Felix's claim as one of the best women World Championships performers of all time. She had already amassed 4 gold medals by the age of 21, and 2 individual Olympic silvers by age 22. By age 23, she could be a 7-time Worlds gold medal winner for the USA. Felix will be a member of both the 4 x 100m and 4 x 400m relay pools and has competed at all distances this season in an attempt to be ready to lead the USA to relay golds as she did in 2007.
Looking at her times, Felix has only three times broken 22 seconds in the 200m. First in Osaka, next in Beijing, where she was second to Veronica Campbell-Brown, and then in Stockholm this year. Heading into Osaka, she had never broken 22.11! Felix, as we said earlier, is one of the rare athletes who always performs at a high level, but when the pressure is on can bring her performance up another notch. We're excited to see what she can do in Berlin as she goes for 200m WCwin #3.
Behind Campbell-Brown and Felix in Beijing was Kerron Stewart. We expect Stewart to be a major factor in the women's 100m; in fact, we have her as the favorite, but in the 200m, Stewart was positively smoked by Felix in Stockholm.
As for the other competitors in the race, we decided to make a table. Basically, the field boils down to a really strong group of Americans and Jamaicans, and a collection from other countries. All are strong picks to make the finals, but we believe Felix and Campbell-Brown will again be 1-2.
Women's 200m Statistics By LRC Coaching Guru John Kellogg
21.88 Allyson Felix (USA) PR 21.81 (= #6 all-time USA) (2007) Gold medal in 2007 World Championships, gold medal in 2005 World Championships, silver medal in 2008 Olympic Games, silver medal in 2004 Olympic Games