SEATTLE, JULY 24 -- Michael Johnson, the fastest man in the world this year at 200 meters, came away with a front-running victory tonight.
But Johnson's time, like most of the others during the meet on the Husky Stadium track, was slow. He was clocked in 20.55 seconds, far off the world best of 19.85 he ran July 6 in Edinburgh, Scotland.
Johnson, the U.S. and NCAA champion from Baylor, ran 19.90 in the national championships, making him the only runner to break 20 seconds this year.
In the Goodwill Games, his first major international championship meet, Johnson was slowed by a strong headwind as he finished about two meters ahead of Robson da Silva of Brazil.
Da Silva was timed in 20.77, with Dennis Mitchell of the United States third in 20.89.
"I didn't execute off the turn like I usually do, so I had to make up for it by getting out of the blocks good and running a strong stretch," Johnson said.
Meanwhile, Nadezhda Ryashkina, 23, of the Soviet Union regained the world record in the women's 10-kilometer (6.2-mile) walk, edging Australian Kerry Saxby, who had held the mark.
Ryashkina, who set the record last year, shattered the mark this time by 29 seconds, clocking 41:56.21. Saxby also went under the old mark of 42:25.2 with a time of 41:57.2.
Dan O'Brien, the second-place finisher in the national championships, took a 218-point lead after four events of the decathlon.
The rapidly improving O'Brien, coming off his career best of a wind-aided 8,483 points, built his advantage in the 100 meters (10.99), long jump (25 feet 11 1/2 inches), shot put (49-9) and high jump (6-9 3/4).
With only the 800 meters remaining tonight, O'Brien had 3,579 points. Mikhail Medved, winner of the shot put at 51-1, was second with 3,361 points.
Viktor Zaitsev, the 1989 and 1990 Soviet champion, won the men's javelin at 276-1. He had the five best throws of the competition.
Natalya Lisovskaya of the Soviet Union, the Olympic gold medalist and world record-holder, took the women's shot put at 67-7, beating Zhihong Huang of China, ranked No. 1 in the world.
In the women's 3,000, U.S. Olympian Patti Sue Plumer won on the day her grandfather, Chet Purcell, was being buried in Newport Beach, Calif.
"My grandfather passed away the other night and it was a bit tough for me to come up here," she said after beating four opponents at the finish line.
"I was hoping I could make this trip worthwhile. I had a lot of mixed feelings over whether I should be here or not. If he had anything to do with it, he would never want me to stay home and go to his funeral. He pretty much hated those kinds of things to begin with." . . .
Soviet hockey player Sergei Fedorov, 20, who disappeared at the Games has popped up in Detroit with a five-year contract to play for the Red Wings.