Gay leaves championships with no regrets

Updated: June 28, 2009, 8:29 PM ET
Associated Press

EUGENE, Ore. -- Tyson Gay insists he has no regrets about leaving U.S. championships after a single race.

OK, maybe a little regret.

"I think I could've run a couple more races," he said.

But asked if he felt he made the right decision not to, he said: "Very much so."

Gay, who ran the 100 in Thursday's preliminary heat in 9.75 seconds, stayed in Eugene through the weekend for training. He was sitting in the athlete's tent Sunday, chatting with friends and watching the meet.

His lone race was tainted somewhat by a bad burst from the starting block. Yet he put up a time he'll never have to apologize for.

The 9.75 was wind-aided, but still stands as the seventh fastest time ever, regardless of conditions.

"It's a positive because I know my body's ready to run fast," Gay said. "It's a negative because I'm not doing everything I need to do in the blocks."

Which is why leaving the meet to devote time to more training was the right decision, he said.

Gay won the world championships in the 100 and 200 in 2007, which gave him an automatic spot at this year's worlds. Athletes who aren't defending champions must finish in the top three at nationals to make the U.S. team.


TRAINING WITH TWINS: Lashinda Demus, winner of the 400 meter hurdles, has a couple of very demanding training partners: Her toddler twins, Dontay and Duaine.

"They kind of cry because they can't catch me," she said of her family inclusive training. "They think they're supposed to keep up with me."

Demus, a 2004 Olympian, gave birth to the twins in June, 2007, then barely missed out on making the U.S. team in Beijing with a fourth-place finish at the Olympic Trials last summer in Eugene.

This season, she was determined to make the U.S. team bound for Beijing.

"I would like the gold medal," she said. "But right now I'm focusing on the American record."

On Saturday, Demus won her third career U.S. title by beating '08 Olympic silver medalist Sheena Tosta. Demus' time of in 53.78 seconds was fastest in the world this season, and set a new Hayward Field record.

Her twins were watching with their grandma in the stands.

"Baby power!" she joked. "I think I get more workouts with the twins than I get on the track."


FINAL HURDLE?: James Carter is contemplating giving up the 400 hurdles.

A three-time U.S. champion, Carter is growing weary of luring sponsors and the grueling travel.

"I don't want to do it anymore, the hassle of going through the hassle," Carter said.

And then there are the cheaters.

"I'm tired of racing drugs," he said. "I think it's worldwide. I think it's all over.

"There's been times that I come up short -- I know it wasn't just because I didn't do what I was supposed to do," he continued. "I feel that way. I'm not putting the blame on any one or two people, I'm not calling anyone's name or whatever. I know what I know."

Carter missed out on making the world team Sunday, pulling up with a hamstring injury in the finals. Carter captured the silver medal in 2005 at worlds.

If he does come back to competition, the 31-year-old is thinking about switching disciplines, possibly even stepping into realm of the decathlon.

"I'm serious," he said. "I'm good at a whole bunch of events. I would consider the decathlon."


TOP SPOT: Despite a bunch of nagging injuries, American record holder Jenn Stuczynski held off the field for her fourth straight national outdoor title in the pole vault.

A gritty performance for sure.

"If I was 100 percent I would have enjoyed it much more," said Stuczynski, who cleared 15 feet, 3 inches. "I'm just happy to place and go to Berlin" for the world championships.

Joining her on the team are Chelsea Johnson and Stacy Dragila, who's making this her last season of competition.

"I'm not retiring yet," Dragila said, laughing. "I still have the summer, then I am retiring ... I feel great."

Stuczynski, who won the silver medal at the Beijing Olympics, holds the American record with her vault of 16 feet, 1 3/4 inches set last year at the Olympic Trials.


WIND SPRINTS: Olympic silver medalist Hyleas Fountain withdrew from the heptathlon Sunday with a strained neck. Fountain was leading the event before exiting. Diana Pickler won the event. ... Galen Rupp, who won the 10,000 meters earlier this week, has hired five-time Olympic gold medalist Michael Johnson as his agent. Johnson's company, Ultimate Performance Sport Management, also represents Jeremy Wariner. ... Lolo Jones fell in her semifinal heat and did not advance to the finals of the 100 hurdles. She said she locked arms with Michelle Perry. "I can only pick myself up and go to Europe and try to get my season back on track," Jones said.


AP Sports Writers Eddie Pells Anne M. Peterson contributed to this report.

Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press

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