Maurice Greene showed why he's the world fastest human, winning even with a poor start. Marion Jones showed that even a knee injury can't slow her.
Greene and Jones capped the USA Outdoor Track and Field Championships by winning the men's and women's 200-meter dashes today.
Greene, capitalizing on the absence of injured world record holder Michael Johnson, sped to victory in a wind-aided 19.93 seconds, beating national indoor champion Rohsaan Griffin by .05 seconds.
Greene stumbled out of the blocks and had to put his left hand on the track to maintain his balance. He finally took the lead with 80 meters remaining and cruised to the finish. While Greene didn't come close to Johnson's world record of 19.32, he showed he was the best on this day.
Earlier this month, Greene set the world record for 100 meters of 9.79.
"The start of my race was shaky, but I recovered well and ran the best race I could today," he said. "It was a stumble out of the blocks. I didn't get enough block clearance."
Jones led all the way, winning in 22.10. Like Greene, she was not close to her best -- 21.62 -- and was far off the world record of 21.34. But Jones was clearly superior to the rest of the field. She led coming off the curve and was not seriously challenged.
Two weeks ago, Jones sprained her right knee while long-jumping, and has been nursing the injury since. "It's the best it's felt," Jones said of her knee.
There were several other outstanding performances on the final program of the four-day event, which was the qualifying meet for the world championships in Seville, Spain, in August.
Jeff Hartwig broke his American record in the pole vault, soaring 19 feet 9 inches; John Godina uncorked the best shot put in the world in two years, 72-3, smashing the 15-year-old Hayward Field record; Tisha Waller shattered meet and field records in winning the women's high jump at 6-6 1/4; Gail Devers won the women's 100 hurdles in a wind-aided 12.54; Mark Crear took the men's 110 hurdles in a wind-aided 13.09; and Regina Jacobs, winner of the women's 1,500 Saturday, completed an unprecedented distance double by winning the 5,000 in 15:24.80.
Hartwig slithered over the bar at 19-9 on his first attempt, surpassing the mark of 19-8 1/2 he set last year. Hartwig then tried to become the first American to clear 20 feet, but missed three times. Still, he broke the meet record of 19-7 set by Scott Huffman in 1994 and the Hayward Field record of 19-6 1/4 established in 1994 by Ukraine's Sergei Bubka, the world record holder at 20-1 3/4.
"I'm always looking for the American record, every time I jump," Hartwig said. "I had a big adrenaline rush after 19-9."
Godina, the runner-up in the discus Saturday, put on a tremendous show in the shot put, with his first three throws exceeding 70 feet. On his longest throw, the usually conservative Godina danced happily along the fringes of the shot put area. C.J. Hunter, Marion Jones's husband, finished second.
In winning her third outdoor title in four years and completing a sweep of the indoor and outdoor championships this year, Waller erased the meet and field record of 6-5 1/2, by Jan Wohlschlag in 1988 and Tanya Hughes in 1992, respectively.
Devers, competing in her first competitive hurdles race in three years, ran the fastest race in the world this year under any conditions.
Crear's time in the men's hurdles also was the fastest in the world this year. He surged over the final hurdle to beat two-time world champion and 1996 Olympic gold medalist Allen Johnson, second at 13.15.
Jacobs became the meet's only double winner and the first to sweep the 1,500 and 5,000. Today, she stayed close to the leaders, before charging to the front with a little more than one lap remaining. Reebok Enclave runner Cheri Kenah finished second in 15:26.60.
Khadevis Robinson of the Santa Monica Track Club won the men's 800 in 1:45.92. Bryan Woodward of the Enclave and Rich Kenah from Reston finished second and third, in 1:46.06 and 1:46.13, respectively. Enclavers Elliot Gaskins and Mike Schroer also qualified for the final, and finished sixth and eighth, respectively.
In the women's 800, Jearl Miles-Clark held off Silver Spring's Meredith Rainey-Valmon, and won in 1:59.47. Rainey-Valmon, who runs for the Enclave, took second in 2:00.36.
Pascal Dobert won the steeplechase in 8:21.48.
CAPTION: Jeff Hartwig clears 19-9 to break his own American record by one-half inch and win pole vault title at U.S. championships in Eugene, Ore.