BERLIN (AP) — Usain Bolt got the birthday present he wanted from his teammates at the world championships on Friday, and Allyson Felix spoiled the party by ending Jamaica’s sprint domination.

After the Jamaican relay team qualified for the 4×100 final without Bolt on the track, Felix glided to the finish with an elegance reminiscent of a long distance runner to win her third straight 200-meter world title.

With a raised fist and little more than a smile at the finish, Felix broke the Jamaican hold on sprinting going back to the Beijing Olympics. She held off an early charge from Olympic champion Veronica Campbell-Brown of Jamaica, and once she entered the straight where her stride is at its most efficient, there was no stopping her.

“I was very confident about my strength,” Felix said. “I defended my title. I cannot ask for more.”

It was the first sprint gold medal for the United States at the championships and Jamaica’s first loss. Jamaica beat the United States 5-0 in sprints in Beijing.

Earlier, the Jamaican sprint team qualified for the 4×100 relay final, giving Bolt a shot at winning a third gold and setting a third world record at the world championships.

The United States was disqualified for an illegal baton change, but the team was appealing the decision. It left the high-powered clash with the Jamaicans hanging in the balance.

A decision might not be made before Saturday, the day of the final.

It was the only blemish on a good day for the United States, which also got a 1-2 finish in the men’s 400 with Olympic champion LaShawn Merritt beating defending champion Jeremy Wariner.

The United States jumped over Jamaica in the medals table with six golds and 16 overall. Jamaica was second with five gold and 10 overall.

The victory of Yaroslav Rybakov in the men’s high jump and Sergey Kirdyapkin in the 50-kilometer walk gave Russia four golds and 11 overall.

After two gold medals and two world records in six days, Bolt took a rest Friday, centering on signing autographs instead of running as he celebrated his 23rd birthday with the fans at the Olympic Stadium.

When he collected his gold for the 200 title and a second $100,000 check for his world record, some 45,000 fans in the stands gave him a heartfelt “Happy Birthday to You” serenade. It was another indication that nothing can seemingly go wrong for the star of the championships.

With two records and two golds, he has already won $320,000.

It was also clear that the Jamaicans can use all the help they can get from Bolt. With former world-record holder Asafa Powell also sitting out the heat, Jamaica struggled to finish second in its heat behind Italy. The team had the sixth-best qualifying time overall.

“We are so confident that we can beat everybody,” said Michael Frater, who also was on Jamaica’s record-breaking team at the Beijing Games. “We are not afraid of anybody.”

The only shadow hanging over the team was whether Powell would be able to make it to Saturday’s final because of an injury problem. It was unclear what that injury was, however.

“We are not sure about Asafa running,” anchor runner Dwight Thomas said.

Bolt has won the 100 and 200 with world record times at the championships. He also won all three events at the Olympics.

Bolt is the backbone of a Jamaican sprint team which has been a perfect 3 for 3 so far at the championships.

After dropping the baton in Beijing, the United States appeared to run a clean enough race to set up the defense of their world title, but a protest that they had exchanged batons outside the designated zone quickly threw the result up in the air.

Russia made it a perfect 3 for 3 in the walks when Kirdyapkin used a late surge to win the 50k event, the longest of the nine-day championships.

Kirdyapkin was as imposing as Valeriy Borchin and Olga Kaniskina were over 20 kilometers, giving Russia a clean sweep in the discipline.

“That’s really the first time in history, and I’m very happy that it’s the Russian team,” Kirdyapkin said.

Dani Samuels won the gold in the women’s discus to give Australia its first medal at the world championships.

Midway through the session, thunder, lightning and a massive downpour delayed events for almost an hour.


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