Athletics-Tokyo Olympians set to shine as Millrose Games return

By Amy Tennery

NEW YORK (Reuters) -A dramatic showdown is set for the men's 60 metres at Saturday's Millrose Games at the Armory in New York, as Tokyo Olympians headline a star-studded lineup.

The first major indoor track event of the year makes its return after going on hiatus in 2021 due to the COVID-19 pandemic with 64 Tokyo Olympians - including gold medallists Ryan Crouser, Katie Nageotte and Athing Mu - appearing.

World 100m champion Christian Coleman, who served an 18-month ban for breaching anti-doping whereabouts rules, faces Olympic bronze medallist Noah Lyles and the world's fastest in 2021 Trayvon Bromell in the 60m, an event in which Coleman holds the world record.

The 25-year-old finished second in the 300m at the Jim Green Invitational earlier this month, his first event since returning to the sport.

"I feel like I've been dealing with (the ban) for over two years and at this point, I mean, I've had plenty time to reflect, move on from the situation, and just focus on what I can do to control my situation moving forward," said Coleman.

Crouser, who broke Randy Barnes' shot put world record of more than 30 years with a 23.37-metre throw at the U.S. Trials last year, said he had adopted an ambitious new training regime to take his performance to even greater heights.

"I don't want to say I'm blindly leaping but it's a leap of faith trying this new programme and so I feel like I'm a little bit lagging behind where I've been in the past," the American told reporters on Friday.

"So if I can throw even in the realm of what I had before - if I can surpass that - it's a fantastic indicator of where I'll be in the future."

Teenager and New Jersey native Mu returns to familiar territory in New York City with a much greater level of celebrity after she also picked up gold as part of the 4x400m relay team.

"It's still surreal to me just because everything kind of happened so fast," said Mu, 19, who will compete in the Wanamaker Women's Mile. "I'm hoping to do it again at some point in my career."

Mu's relay team mate Allyson Felix, the most decorated American in Olympic track and field history who competed in her fifth Games in Tokyo, will receive the Armory Presidents' Award in recognition of her career achievements.

(Reporting by Amy Tennery in New YorkEditing by Christian Radnedge)

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