We were promised three head-to-head meetings between Usain Bolt and Tyson Gay this season. Minor injuries to both sprint stars altered those plans, but the pair are, literally, back on track and will compete in the 100 in Friday's Diamond League meet in Stockholm, along with former world record holder Asafa Powell.
Photo: Tyson Gay (left) and Usain Bolt will meet for the first time this year on Friday, in Stockholm. Victah Sailer/Getty Images
The fastest men in the world were last on a track together a year ago in Berlin, where Bolt broke his own world record by winning the 100 in 9.58 seconds. Gay settled for second in a then-U.S. record 9.71 while Powell took the bronze in 9.84. Gay has since lowered his personal best to 9.69, the third-fastest 100 in history, behind Bolt's two record-breaking runs.
UPDATE (Aug. 5): Asafa Powell has withdrawn from the Stockholm meet due to a series of nagging injuries.
Bolt and Powell share the 2010 world lead in the 100 at 9.82. Gay's only run the 100 once this year, at Gateshead July 10, where he beat Powell while running 9.94 into a 1.7 meters-per-second breeze.
Gay and Bolt will anchor (I assume) their respective 4 x 100-meter relay teams in the Aug. 19 Weltklasse meet in Zurich. Gay's U.S. team will include Walter Dix, Wallace Spearmon and Trell Kimmons. Bolt will run with Mario Forsythe, Yohan Blake and Marvin Anderson. Powell anchored Jamaica's gold-medal relay teams at the 2008 Olympics and 2009 World Championships, so Bolt will presumably anchor in Powell's absence in Zurich.
Bolt and Gay are scheduled to face off one more time this month, in the 100 at the Diamond League's grand finale in Brussels Aug. 27.