Fred Kerley, Christian Coleman To Open Up Diamond League Season In China

By Chris Chavez

March 22, 2024

2022 100m world champion Fred Kerley and 2019 100m world champion Christian Coleman will headline the men’s 100m at the Shanghai/Suzhou Diamond League on April 27th, meet organizers announced on Friday.

Here’s what you need to know:

– Kerley has already opened up his season with a 10.03 at the Hurricane Invitational in Miami, Florida this past weekend. Coleman has yet to open up outdoors after winning his second gold medal in the 60m at the 2024 World Indoor Championships in Glasgow.

– Kerley holds a 3–1 edge in his career head-to-head 100m races against Coleman. In 2022, Kerley went 3-0 against Coleman in the 100m. Last year, they only faced off once in the 100m and it was the Xiamen Diamond League just after the World Championships. Coleman narrowly won 9.83 to 9.85.

– For Kerley, 2024 is a redemption season. Last year, he failed to reach the 100m final at the world championships and did not qualify for the U.S. team in the 200m. He was part of the gold medal-winning U.S. 4x100m relay team. When he spoke with CITIUS MAG in Budapest following the 100m at the World Championships, he said,

"I’m just hungry inside. I’m back for blood next year."

What they said about the Diamond League opener:

Coleman (via press release): “I’m excited about coming to China to compete again. Last time I was there they showed a lot of love and support and I was able to pull out my best performance of the year in front of a great crowd. I’m looking forward to opening my season with another great performance in China and starting my Olympic campaign off on a great note.”

Kerley (via press release): “I am excited to come back to China in April. 2024 is a very important year with the Olympic Games taking place in Paris in August and it will be great to start my Diamond League season in China.”

Who else is racing?

Jamaica’s Yohan Blake, the 2012 Olympic silver medalist in the 100m and 200m, was also announced as part of the field. He turned 34 years old in December and is looking to regain his form in the Olympic year. Last year, he ran season’s bests of 10.03 for 100m and 20.35 for 200m. He was left off the Jamaican national team for the world championships in Budapest. He has not been in a global championship final since his 5th place finish at the 2019 World Championships 100m final in Doha.

What’s at stake?

Less than a month until the Diamond League campaign kicks off. Xiamen (April 20) and Suzhou/Shanghai (April 27) will both feature the men’s 100m.

While an early-season race is too little to judge who will make the U.S. Olympic team for Paris, this race can help us assess these stars’ early-season fitness and where they sit among the top American 100m stars. The United States 100m picture is very crowded with Coleman, Kerley and Noah Lyles being the last three world champions. The likes of 2022 world championship bronze medalist Trayvon Bromell (who is coming back from a bone spur surgery) and 2022 world championship silver medalist Marvin Bracy (who made a recent coaching switch) are looking to make the Olympic team after missing last year’s squad for the World Championships.

Lyles will not race in the Shangai meet and will run at the Bermuda Grand Prix that same weekend.

Chris Chavez

Chris Chavez launched CITIUS MAG in 2016 as a passion project while working full-time for Sports Illustrated. He covered the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro and grew his humble blog into a multi-pronged media company. He completed all six World Marathon Majors and is an aspiring sub-five-minute miler.