ZURICH (AP) — Tyson Gay believes he can run the second fastest time in history on his final scheduled 100-meter race of the season in Brussels next week.
Gay said Tuesday that his 9.78 seconds into a headwind on a wet track in London last Friday gave him confidence that he can beat his personal record of 9.69 set in Shanghai last September.
"I think I have a lot left in the tank," said Gay, targeting the Aug. 27 meet in Brussels, which stages the Diamond League final in the 100. "I know the track's extremely fast. I'm going to give it my best and hopefully I'll PR."
Only Usain Bolt has beaten Gay's best — clocking 9.58 at the 2009 world championships in Berlin when the American got silver in 9.71. Bolt ended his season last week to protect a back injury after being beaten over 100 for the first time by Gay, at Stockholm's Diamond League meet.
The 28-year-old Gay agreed that the London run — the world's fastest in 2010 — was the most satisfying of his career even though it was only his fifth fastest. He said he was slowed because of the technical challenges of delivering a fast start and maintaining his form in such poor weather.
"I think so, in those conditions. My start was on point and normally that's the worst part of my race," Gay said. "My time in London was a lot more impressive than Shanghai, (which) was not technically good."
Gay said he had more energy for fast times this season because the 2010 schedule had no major event.
"I'm not as drained as I was last year. It took that extra step to keep running after the world championships," he said.
Gay spoke in Zurich ahead of Thursday's Weltklasse meeting, which stages the first half of the season-ending Diamond League finals program. He will run the 4x100 relay for a United States team and skip the 200 because of a slight left knee injury that hurts coming out of the blocks on the bend.
The second-fastest man ever shared a news conference Tuesday with the first man in track history to run 10.0.
Now 73, Armin Hary is being celebrated at the Weltklasse 50 years after he set the iconic mark at the Swiss meet, running on a cinder track and hand-timed by stopwatch.
Gay described the German — the last European to set a world record in the 100 dash — as a legend of the sport.
"So much history comes with this man," Gay said. "He was a huge star, like a rock star, and to compare him to the guys like Usain Bolt is amazing."
Hary's record run was even more impressive, Gay said, because it came 35 minutes after another 10.0 was annulled for a false start.
"I would not be able to run twice in one day like that," Gay said.
Hary, famed for his fast starts, recalled Tuesday that journalists covering the race told him he had to run again.
"I was young so I didn't mind," said Hary, who three months later became Olympic champion in Rome. "An Olympic medal is for ever. If you get a world record, someone else can take it."
Hary's elite career was ended by a car accident in 1961, and it took another seven years for his world record to be bettered.
Jim Hines of the U.S. broke the 10-second barrier with a hand-timed 9.9 in June 1968. He then set the first electronically timed record of 9.95 in the Olympic final at Mexico City.
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