NORWALK, CALIF., JUNE 14 -- Carl Lewis, looking surprisingly fit, sped to victory in his 100-meter heat and finished second in his semifinal at the Mobil Outdoor Track and Field Championships tonight, then said he would run in the final.
The world record holder and six-time Olympic gold medalist had indicated earlier he might only compete in the first round and skip the remainder of the competition.
One race was all he needed to be eligible for next month's Goodwill Games in Seattle, according to the rules of The Athletics Congress, the national governing body for the sport.
Lewis has been working on a recently released book and has not devoted his normal amount of time to training this year. This was his second competition of the year. A week ago, he ran 10.42 seconds in an all-comers meet in Houston.
In the first race tonight, he got off to a quick start and won easily in a wind-aided 10.06.
The semifinal was a different matter. Lewis was late out of the blocks and finished in the same time as Mike Marsh, although Marsh was given first place after they were both clocked in a legal 10.20.
After the semifinal, Lewis decided he would run in Friday's final.
"I didn't know how fast I could run," he said. "I came here with the objective of running all three rounds."
Except for cramping in his calves during warm-ups and again with about 50 meters remaining in the semifinal, Lewis said: "I felt better than I did 24 hours ago, because . . . I didn't know where I was" in fitness.
In the only final, Colette Murphy registered the fastest time of the year by an American in winning the women's 10,000 meters in 32:21.01. Cathy O'Brien, a 1988 Olympic marathoner, finished second in 32:23.00.
Evelyn Ashford, the gold medalist in the women's 100 in the 1984 Olympics and former world record holder, won both her races, clocking a wind-aided 11.15, then a legal 11.38.
LaVonna Martin, this year's indoor Mobil Grand Prix champion, won her opening heat in the 100-meter hurdles in 12.94, then took her semifinal in 12.89.
Willie Banks, the world record holder in the triple jump, advanced to the final with a modest jump of 53 feet 2 1/4 inches.
Sandra Farmer-Patrick, the national record holder in the women's 400 hurdles, breezed in her preliminary, winning in 56.76, the fastest time in the three heats.
The most significant performance among the field event qualifiers was by javelin thrower Rob Curtis, who threw 265-3, putting him sixth on the all-time U.S. list.