Fred Kerley competes during the men's 100-meter dash at the Diamond League Memorial Van Damme on Sept. 3, 2021 in Brussels.
After Fred Kerley led a Team USA 100-meter sweep in Brussels to become the first man to win Diamond League 100, 200 and 400 races, a certain Twitter account had a question.
“So… which event will @fkerley99 focus on next year? Asking for a friend,” wrote the World Athletics Championships Oregon22.
“800,” Kerley replied, followed by three laughing emojis. “naw I just playing.”
Yet the versatile sprinter continues to break new ground on the track with no post-Olympic letdown in sight. Kerley, the Olympic silver medalist in the 100 a month ago in Tokyo, overtook Olympic Trials champion Trayvon Bromell in the closing strides of their race Friday to win with a time of 9.94 seconds. That was one-tenth of a second off his personal best of 9.84 set at the Tokyo Games.
Bromell clocked 9.97 and Michael Norman – who ran the 400 in Tokyo – was third in 9.98 before an enthusiastic crowd at King Baudouin Stadium.
While Bromell and Norman had better starts, Kerley, a commanding presence at 6-foot-3, came up between them to grab the victory at the tape.
In the midst of his post-race obligations, Kerley was active on Twitter. When a track and field publication noted that he was the first man in history to win the 100 and 400 on the Diamond League circuit, Kerley wrote that he’d won a 200, too.
“I want to be the best at all three distances,” Kerley said before the meet. “What makes someone the best, maybe a world record? I know I have got the potential to break the 400-meter record.
“I want to be a legend, like Usain Bolt.”
Before this season, Kerley was considered a 400-meter specialist as a two-time national champion in 2017 and 2019. He recorded his personal best of 43.64 seconds at the 2019 meet in Des Moines, Iowa. The Texas A & M standout went on to win the bronze medal in the 400 at the 2019 world championships and the gold on the 4 x 400-meter relay.