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Lyles sets world best en route to USATF Athlete of the Week honors


INDIANAPOLIS -- Teenage sensation Noah Lyles (Alexandria, Virginia) earns his first USATF Athlete of the Week honors of 2017, setting a new world best in the men’s indoor 300m at the USATF Indoor Championships in Albuquerque, New Mexico.

Lyles, in his first year as a professional, clocked 31.87 to shave .01 off Wallace Spearmon’s 31.88 from 2006. The 19-year-old needed every bit of the WB to hold off Paul Dedewo who recorded the third-fastest time in history with a 31.92 in second.

“I just felt ready in all my practices, so I was really confident in what I could do,” Lyles said Saturday. “Coach [Lance Brauman] always says keep your composure and I [knew] if I [did that], the competition might die out. I have really good confidence in my endurance so I knew if I just pumped hard and kept stride for stride, I'd be good."

Other notable performances:

Gwen Berry (St. Louis, Missouri) set a world best on her final attempt in the weight throw at the USATF Indoor Championships, adding four centimeters to the previous best with a 25.60m/84-0. Berry shattered the meet record on her first throw, launching the weight 25.22m/82-9, and added a 25.21m/82-8.5 on her third throw. It was the greatest weight throw competition in track and field history, with four women over 24 meters.

A second dismantling of the USATF Indoor Championships record and a late rush to the line gave Phyllis Francis (Queens, New York) the win in the 300 meters in 36.15, the second-fastest time ever by an American and No. 7 on the world all-time list. Francis, who had the fastest qualifying time with a 36.49, made up a two-stride deficit over the final 50m to overtake Joanna Atkins at the line.

Tyler Jermann (Flagstaff, Arizona) set a new men’s course record by nearly four minutes at Caumsett Park in his debut ultra at USATF 50k Road Championships in Long Island, New York. His time of 2:48:56 easily overtook the course record but fell shy of the 2:43:45 American record.

Khalid Mulazim (Cleveland, Ohio) sprinted to beat the listed M50 400m world record in 52.02, besting the previous record of 52.38. Mulazim was second overall in the exhibition masters 400m at the USATF Indoor Championships in Albuquerque, New Mexico.

Abbabiya Simbassa (Sioux City, Iowa) led Team USA to a sweep in the senior men’s division at the NACAC Cross Country Championships on Saturday, March 4 in Boca Raton, Florida. Simbassa won in his first appearance in a Team USA uniform, taking home his first international title with a time of 22:40.47.

Now in its 16th year, USATF’s Athlete of the Week program is designed to recognize outstanding performers at all levels of the sport. USATF names a new honoree each week and features the athlete on Selections are based on top performances and results from the previous week.

2017 Winners: January 5, Miranda Melville; January 12, Leonard Korir; January 19, Jordan Hasay; January 26, Keni Harrison; February 2, Michael Wardian; February 9, Mikey Brannigan; February 16, Ajee’ Wilson; February 23, Kathy Martin; March 2, Keturah Orji; March 9, Noah Lyles.

We welcome your nominations!

To nominate an athlete for USATF Athlete of the Week, please send a detailed email about his/her performance to

Fans can follow along with #USATF on Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat and Facebook.

Amanda Brooks
Marketing and Communications Manager
USA Track & Field

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