Carl Lewis and Florence Griffith Joyner, both multiple gold medalists at the Seoul Olympics, closed the 1988 track and field season with easy 100-meter victories Saturday night in heavy rain at the Toshiba International Super Meet.
Griffith-Joyner, who won three golds and a silver at South Korea, got a flying start in her shocking pink one-legged outfit with a shimmering black bikini bottom. She won the 100 meters in 10.91 seconds, well outside her world record 10.49 but far ahead of Olympic silver medalist Evelyn Ashford (11.14) and East German Marlies Goehr (11.30).Lewis had been slated to run against Ben Johnson before the Canadian was disqualified from the Olympics and banned from track and field for failing a drug test in Seoul. Lewis breezed to victory in 10.09 seconds, ahead of fellow American Dennis Mitchell, fourth in the Olympic final.
Lewis, who also won the long jump gold and the 200 meters silver in Seoul, was responsible for the first of the two false starts, and was down after 20 meters, but won easily.
Griffith Joyner was a meter ahead after only 20 meters, but Ashford closed the gap briefly. The Olympic champion then accelerated away in the rain.
She presented Goehr with a bouquet after the race to mark the East German's retirement after a 12-year career.
Both Lewis and Griffith-Joyner were greeted like rock stars by the crowd, which braved five hours of driving rain and a largely mediocre meet to see them run in the last two events of the night.
Olympic 110-meter hurdles champion Roger Kingdom of the United States ended his season with a victory over Olympic silver medalist Colin Jackson of Britain and bronze medalist Tonie Campbell of the United States in a repeat of the Olympic final finish.
Conditions were so bad at the National Stadium, built for the 1964 Olympic Games and site of the 1991 World Championships, that the pole vault competition was cancelled. The hammer cage was dismantled as soon as that event ended, and the high jump, long jump and triple jump runways were continually rolled to make the approaches safe.
The meet, the final major event of the season, had been in doubt all week because of the weather and because of Emperor Hirohito's illness.
The meet featured 16 Olympic gold medalists - although Sergei Bubka's pole vault was scrapped - and a total of 77 athletes from 23 countries who won a total of 56 medals in Seoul.
About 35,000 fans, half the capacity, sat under umbrellas beneath heavy grey skies.
"Rain? It was like swimming out there," said Patrik Sjoberg, who beat Olympic champion Gennadiy Avdeenko of the Soviet Union in the high jump. "It was dangerous to run too fast in the conditions and I only took a five step run-up instead of eight."