Despite a steady downpour of rain and a false start, Andre De Grasse will leave Norway with something to feel good about.
The Canadian won the 100 meters at the Diamond League meet at Bislett Stadium in Oslo with a season-best time of 10.05 seconds, bouncing back from a last-place finish in 10.21 seconds during his last race at the Prefontaine Classic in May.
De Grasse, the 27-year-old two-time reigning Olympic bronze medalist in the event, struggled to begin the 2022 season, and has still yet to crack the 10-second mark. His personal best of 9.89 was set at the Tokyo Olympics, where he also won 200m gold and helped the Canadian 4x100m relay team to silver.
But the Oslo race has the Canadian headed in the right direction with nationals coming up next week in Langley, BC, which determines the team for the world championships in July in Eugene, Ore.
“Yesterday, when I came out here I felt pretty good. I know my speed is coming back. The difference is going to be that start and the first 30 meters. I am pretty satisfied with my first win of the season, SB, but I know I still have a couple of things to work on,” De Grasse said.
The relatively weak field in Norway, which also included former African record holder Akani Simbine, dealt with damp conditions and a false start before getting off the blocks.
In typical fashion, De Grasse didn’t dazzle with his start, but pulled away late to secure his first victory of the season.
Reece Prescod of the UK placed just behind De Grasse in second at 10.06 seconds, while Simbine rounded out the top three in 10.09 seconds.
De Grasse said he’s now headed to Paris to race the 200m in the next Diamond League meet on Saturday. Live coverage begins at 3 pm ET on CBCSports.ca, the CBC Sports app and CBC Gem.
“It should be very warm and sunny, what I really like. Definitely, I am looking forward to do a couple of more races,” he said.
Mitton 6th in debut
Earlier, fellow Canadian Sarah Mitton placed sixth in her Diamond League debut.
The 25-year-old Mitton, of Brooklyn, NS, threw 19.57m to win a meet last week in Sweden. She placed seventh at the World Indoors in March.
Watch a replay of the Oslo meet on CBC-TV, CBCSports.ca and the CBC Sports app on Saturday at 1 pm ET.