“I was thrilled with my race,” said Felix, a 26-year-old who took silver in the 200 at the 2008 Olympics. “It felt like everything came together at the right time.”
While the 200 finish was never in question, there was still no resolution to the third-place tie between Felix and Jeneba Tarmoh from seven days earlier. The runners and their coach, Bobby Kersee, were scheduled to meet with U.S.A. Track and Field officials later Saturday night to discuss the matter.
In the 100 last weekend, both Felix and Tarmoh crossed the finish line in 11.068 seconds, and USATF officials said they had no way to break the tie. The organization devised new procedures and hoped to determine a winner with either a run-off or a coin toss before the trials conclude Sunday.
Neither Felix nor Tarmoh expressed a preference to reporters Saturday night in how to break the tie. “As of now, I just want it to be over with,” Tarmoh said.
Tarmoh, 22, finished fifth in Saturday’s 200, which means her only chance to represent the United States at the London Games is to qualify in the 100 or be selected for a relay team. If there’s to be a run-off, USATF wants to stage it Sunday, but Kersee said that’s too soon for either athlete, each of whom ran three races in the previous three days.
“They’re not going to run tomorrow,” Kersee said told reporters Saturday night. “That’s not even in question.”
Felix said Saturday night that she was “physically and emotionally drained at this point,” but neither runner seemed interested in conceding the third-place spot in the 100.
“I think the biggest thing about this is that you work hard for it,” Felix said. “She worked hard, I worked hard. We both are very deserving.”
Neither was made available to reporters until the conclusion of Saturday’s race, and both said they had tried to focus solely on the 200 in the past week. Tarmoh said she and Felix, who train together, didn’t even discuss the matter.
“I was like, ‘Allyson, what’s going on?’ I’m still kind of a rookie and everything. I really don’t understand what a dead heat is, what a run-off is, what they want us to do,” Tarmoh said. “I asked her, and she was like, ‘Don’t worry about it. We’ll deal with it later.’ ”
Carmelita Jeter, who won the women’s 100, finished second to Felix in Saturday’s 200 with a time of 22.11, and Sanya Richards-Ross finished third with a time of 22.22. Richards-Ross, who already won the 400, is the first American woman to qualify for the Olympics in the 200 and 400 since Valerie Brisco-Hooks in 1984.
Also Saturday, Aries Merritt earned his ticket to London, posting the world’s fastest time of the year in the men’s 110-meter hurdles. He won the race with a time of 12.93 seconds, his personal best. Jason Richardson (12.98) was second and Jeffrey Porter (13.08) third.