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Powell's plan

Published:Saturday | June 11, 2016 | 12:00 AMAndre Lowe

Former 100m world record holder Asafa Powell is a headliner in one of the most highly anticipated clashes of the season, but the sprinter maintains that today's Racers Grand Prix at the National Stadium is simply a step towards bigger targets.

Powell will line up against compatriots Usain Bolt, the world and Olympic champion, as well as 2011 world champion Yohan Blake in a 100m showdown that has only been seen three times before.

However, despite the obvious hype around the event, which will bring the curtains down at the inaugural staging of the Area Permit meet, Powell, who is looking to build on his recent win at the Atlanta America Track League, says his real focus is the upcoming National Senior Championships - Jamaica's Olympic trials.

"The Grand Prix is really preparation for trials," Powell told The Gleaner.

Powell has only beaten Bolt in one of their 16 clashes - at the Stockholm Diamond League in 2008. He holds the advantage in his head-to-head clashes with Blake. with a 5-3 lead in their eight races against each other.


Not focused on rivals


Nonetheless, Powell says he is not thinking too much about those lining up against him today.

"I'm not focused on who is in the race. I am focusing on executing my race properly from start to finish, and that's how I'm looking on this race. Trials is my main focus," Powell noted.

The men's 100m will also feature South African Akani Simbine and Commonwealth champion Kemar Bailey-Cole.

In his last outing, Powell clocked 10.01 to win the 100m at the Atlanta America Track League. In his other two races over the distance, Powell finished second at the Prefontaine Classic in 9.94 (+2.6) and first in Guadeloupe, with a time of 10.04.