BYDGOSZCZ, Poland – The battle between some of the fastest juniors begins on Day 1 at the IAAF World U20 Championships, as Bydgoszcz 2016 gets under way on Tuesday.
The sprints are always among the highlighted events at these championships and that tradition is set to continue when the men’s U20 100 metres heats get going.
Saudi Arabia’s Abdullah Abkar Mohammed was the fastest among the entrants, but has not been listed for the heats on Tuesday.
However, USA’s Noah Lyles, Jamaicans Raheem Chambers and Jhevaughn Matherson, Barbados’ Mario Burke, Tlotliso Leotlela of South Africa and Italy’s Filippo Tortu are among the quickest sprinters entered in the event.
Based on current form, it looks like Lyles will start as the one to beat after the American posted a time of 10.16 seconds at the US Olympic Trials in Eugene, earlier this month to declare his championships ready fitness.
The 18-year-old also posted wind-aided 10.08 (2.2m/s) when winning the US Junior Championships in California, last month and also clocked 10.17 in April.
Lyles will start in heat three in the morning session and will come up against Derick Silva of Brazil and Germany’s Manuel Eitel, who both have solid entry times.
Tortu, the top European entrant, also enters these championships on great form, after twice breaking the Italian national U20 record this year, including running 10.19 at the European Championships in Amsterdam, earlier this month.
He will start in heat four with Lyles’ countryman Hakim Montgomery and Malasia’s Badrul Hisyam Abdul Manap.
Meanwhile, despite having the third fastest junior in the world this year, Jamaica did not register the country’s quickest man, Nigel Ellis (10.16), after he false started at the Jamaican U20 championships last month.
He was among three athletes listed for the event, but the coaches decided on sticking with Chambers and Matherson, who have both clocked 10.25 this year and have the talent to mount a serious challenge for the title at Bydgoszcz 2016.
Matherson races from heat two, while Chambers will start in heat six.
Elsewhere in the U20 men’s 100 heats, South African Leotlela and Australia’s Trae Williams will line-up in the fifth heat, while Jack Hale of Australia and Japan’s Ippei Takeda start in heat one.
Action in the 3000 metres Steeplechase for women, the men’s 1500m heats and women’s 800m heats are also on the schedule for the opening session on Day 1.