NAIROBI, May 7 (Xinhua) -- Olympic champion and Jamaican female sprint icon Shelly Ann Fraser-Pryce powered to the fastest ever women's 100m on African soil as she won the 2022 Kip Keino Classic Continental Tour in 10.67 seconds.
Home favorite and African record holder, Ferdinand Omanyala, shared the limelight when he won the corresponding men's race in a world leading 9.85 seconds to send thousands who converged at the Moi International Sports Centre, Kasarani, into raptures.
Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta and First Lady Margaret Kenyatta joined the crowd for the third edition of Africa's only Gold Label Continental Tour meeting.
Fraser-Pryce, 35, delivered one of the most astonishing performances in her first race on African soil after surging away from the gun to arrive unchallenged at the finish.
Her pre-race main challenger and Tokyo 2020 Olympics silver medallist, Christine Mboma of Namibia, 19, crashed to the track midway through the race before eventually leaving on stretchers with a nasty looking injury that threatened her season.
"I'm grateful for the welcome I have received here, and the crowd was amazing. I promised a good race and winning here today gives me a lot of confidence for the season. To come here and run a fast time in front of all these cheering people is great," the delighted four-time Olympic and 10-time world champion said.
Olympic and World Indoor champion, Lamont Marcell Jacobs pulled out of the men's 100m with a stomach bug, leaving Tokyo 2020 silver winner Fred Kerley and Omanyala as the favorites for the last race of the program.
After a false start blamed on technical issues, Omanyala, who made history at the Tokyo 2020 Olympics when he became the first Kenyan to qualify for the final, pulled away from Kerley at 50m and powered home to bring the house down.
"With good conditions, I can run 9.60. I have been improving on my start and today it is working and I'm grateful I have been able to deliver the performance I told Kenyans I could," Omanyala who ran 9.77 seconds here last year for second said after upgrading to the Kip Keino gold.
Kerley repeated his position from the Olympics in 9.92 seconds with fellow American, Isiah Young rounding off the podium in 10.13 seconds.
Canadian Aaron Brown took the men's 200m in 20.05 seconds after edging out American Kyree King (20.08) and former African champion, Isaac Makwala (20.31).
"I wanted to run a sub-20. I am happy with the time I have posted considering this is a high altitude. In the meantime, before I leave on 10th for Doha I intend to go on a Safari and enjoy the Kenyan hospitality," the Canadian sprinter said.
Aminatou Seyni of Niger won the women's 200m dash in 22.43 ahead of American pair Shannon Ray (22.84) and Dezerea Bryant (22.92).
Poland's Olympic champions, Wojciech Nowicki and Anita Wlodarczyk proved their dominance in the hammer throws posting world leading marks of 81.43m and 70.71m in the men's and women's events.
"I have loved the atmosphere here and competing with such a crowd gives you a huge lift. My performance here has given me confidence of a good season," Wlodarczyk said.
Egyptian Ihab Abdelrahman (83.79m) won the first event of the day, the men's Javelin at the expense of local favorite and 2015 World champion, Julius Yego (79.89m).
As expected, Kenyans dominated the middle- and long-distance races, with teenager Emmanuel Wanyonyi continuing his rise to prominence when he took the top honours in the men 800m in one minute and 45.01 seconds with countryman Cornelius Tuwei and Tshepo Tshite of South Africa taking silver (1:45.49) and bronze (1:45.51).
Ugandan women 3,000m steeplechase Olympic champion, Peruth Chemutai was relegated to bronze in nine minutes and 20.07 seconds with Kenya-born Kazakhstani, Norah Jeruto, a former African champion took the race in 9:04.95 ahead of Kenya's Faith Cherotich 9:12.04.
"This was my first race of the season and I'm happy with the performance. It's still early and I have a lot of training to do before the World Championships," Chemutai remarked.
Abel Kipsang led the Kenyan sweep in the men's 1500m in three minutes and 31.01 seconds with Reynold Kipkorir and Kumari Taki rounding off the minor medals. ■