Canadian sprinter Ben Johnson said the spectacular performances of American track stars Carl Lewis and Florence Griffith Joyner at the U.S. Olympic Track and Field Trials last weekend were tainted.
Johnson told the Toronto Globe and Mail on Tuesday that Griffith Joyner's world-record time of 10.49 seconds in the women's 100 meters was set up by officials at the trials."I'd believe a 10.71," Johnson said.
In an unusual situation, wind guages at the Indiana-Purdue University track straightaways registered zero for two consecutive days. Meanwhile, at a jumping pit less than 10 meters away, wind gusts registered four meters per second.
Even at 10.71, Griffith Joyner's time would have eclipsed the former world record of 10.76, held by Evelyn Ashford.
Lewis ran the 100 meters in 9.78, faster than Johnson's world record 9.83, but the time was discounted as wind-aided.
"The guy had a 5.2-meter wind behind him," Johnson said. "If I were in his shoes, I'd have run 9.4 or 9.3."
"With a legal wind, Carl probably ran a 10.05. He had to come back from the pack to beat them. It was a typical race."
Lewis has said that Johnson had a career-best run when he clocked the 9.83 in the 100 at the World Championships last fall. Lewis said his own best is still to come.
"We'll see when the time comes," Johnson said in reference to the upcoming Olympic Summer Games in Seoul, South Korea.