SPORTS

BLAZING SPEEDS

08/04/2012 12:27 EDT | Updated 10/03/2012 05:12 EDT
Is it the track?

Seven female sprinters, led by world champion Carmelita Jeter's time of 10.83 seconds, ran the first round of the 100 in 11 seconds or better Friday.

That was two more than did it over the entire meet in Beijing four years ago, and this time, there are still the semifinals and the gold-medal race to go.

Of course, Usain Bolt and Yohan Blake will also be looking to rev things up Saturday afternoon in the men's 100 heats.

Called Mondotrack, the surface has shock-absorbing material built into the bottom instead of the top, meaning the upper layer provides better traction. That, in turn, lets runners wear flatter spikes that don't dig into the track as much, allowing for quicker turnover.

"Is this track better than Beijing? Unfortunately, I don't have a concrete answer," said Amy Millslagle, vice-president for Olympic operations at Dow, which provides materials for the track. "You simply can't answer that because there's such a human element involved, and you can't prove one track is faster than another."

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Eddie Pells — Twitter — www.twitter.com/epells

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