Philadelphia Eagles wide receiver Devon Allen scorched to the third fastest 110m hurdles time in history on Sunday with an upset victory over world champion Grant Holloway at the USATF New York Grand Prix.
The 27-year-old Allen, who signed with the Eagles in April after a successful career in college gridiron, produced a flawless race to surge home in a world-leading time of 12.84sec at New York’s Icahn Stadium.
Holloway, the 2019 World Championships gold medallist, was second in 13.06 with Daniel Roberts third in 13.17.
Allen’s performance was made all the more remarkable given that he has recently been juggling both track and field commitments with off-season training with his Philadelphia Eagles team-mates.
Allen said he had thought a fast time was on the cards after recent results in training. Only two men—Holloway (12.81) and world record holder Aries Merritt (12.80) — have gone faster over the distance.
“It’s been there,” Allen said of his time. “We’ve been doing it in training for probably the last six weeks. We just need some fresh legs.
“I’ve been doing OTAs (organized team activities) in Philly having fun with the boys playing football.
“But now I’m back in track mode for the next couple of weeks. Really the biggest thing is feeling fresh and now running fast, I’m really excited.”
Allen, a finalist at the 2016 Olympics and pandemic-delayed Tokyo Games, plans to race in Europe before returning to the US for the World Championship trials in Eugene, Oregon, at the end of this month.
Allen’s performance was the highlight of Sunday’s meeting in New York.
In other events, reigning US 100m champion Sha’Carri Richardson had a mixed day. The flamboyant sprinter, competing in a striking fishnet bodysuit, was beaten in her preferred event, the 100m, finishing second behind Aleia Hobbs.
Hobbs took the tape in 10.83sec, with Richardson just behind in 10.85. Olympic finalist Teahna Daniels was third in 10.99.
However Richardson bounced back later Sunday to win the 200m in 22.38sec ahead of Tamara Clark (22.62) and the Bahamas’ Tynia Gaither 22.66.
Richardson’s winning time was well behind this year’s world leading 200m mark of 21.80 set by Abby Steiner at the NCAA collegiate championships in Eugene on Saturday.
In the men’s 100, world champion Christian Coleman’s preparations in his comeback season following an anti-doping suspension continued with an encouraging victory.
Coleman swept to the line in 9.92sec, his fastest time of the year, with Jamaica’s Ackeem Blake second in 9.95.
There was another brisk time in the 200m, where 2019 world champion Noah Lyles clocked his fastest time of 2022 to win in 19.61sec.
Kyree King was second in 20.02 with Brandon Carnes third in 20.07.