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US' Allyson Felix celebrates after winning the women's 200m final at the athletics event of the London 2012 Olympic Games on August 8, 2012 in London. AFP PHOTO / GABRIEL BOUYSGABRIEL BOUYS/AFP/GettyImages

LONDON -- Allyson Felix flew around the swift Olympic Stadium track Wednesday night chasing redemption.

The three-time Olympian didn't just leave disappointment in the dust in winning the women's 200 meters in front of flashing camera phones and thousands of screaming fans. She blew it out of her consciousness in winning a gold medal in a race that she had twice been runner-up.

In an Usain Bolt-like performance, Felix crushed a world-class field by coming off the turn with a full set of steam. She won in a time of 21.88 seconds to not only wipe away personal demons but highlight a noteworthy day for American track and field with seven medals.

Felix and 200 bronze medalist Carmelita Jeter were part of the biggest single-day medal haul since the United States won nine medals on Aug. 6, 1992, when six finals were held.

In a red, white and blue blur, Americans claimed all but five available medals -- a powerful reminder to anyone believing the obituaries about U.S. track and field's demise.

A Big Haul rundown:

  • Brittney Reese of Gulfport, Miss., won the long jump in 23 feet, 4¼ inches ,while Janay DeLoach of Fort Collins, Colo., was third in 22-7¾.

  • Aries Merritt of Marietta, Ga., ran a personal-best 12.92 seconds to win the men's 110 hurdles with Jason Richardson of Cedar Hill, Texas, getting the silver medal in 13.04. Merritt is the first U.S. hurdler to win the event since Allen Johnson in 1996.


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  • World champion Lashinda Demus of Palmdale won a silver medal in the women's 400 hurdles in 52.77 seconds.

    With four days of track and field competition remaining, the U.S. has accumulated 20 medals en route to its goal of 30 podium finishes. Perhaps more significant is the fact American women have won 11 medals, the second most in history behind the 16 that they won at the boycotted Los Angeles Games in 1984.

    In the 40th anniversary of the landmark gender equity legislation known as Title IX, U.S. women are dominating the London Games. American women won eight of the 16 total U.S. gold medals in swimming.

    The American women's soccer and water polo teams play for historic Olympic titles Thursday night.

    "We're on track to do what we want to do," long jumper Reese said.

    The Mississippian was aware of the success around her. She got so caught up in the emotions of Felix's victory that Reese had to hurry one of her jumps or risk getting penalized.

    "I was just glad to bring the medal count up," said Gardena's Jeter, who also won a medal in the 100 meters last weekend.

    Felix, 26, also rejoiced in her country's bountiful day. But track and field is such an insular sport that most athletes don't have time to consider anything outside their bubble.

    In many ways Felix stepped to the starting block in Lane 7 facing a crucible. She knew the woman who had defeated her in Athens and Beijing loomed behind her like a gathering storm.

    Jamaica's Veronica Campbell-Brown had dominated the sprints in the 2000s. It's one reason Felix wanted to compete in the 100 meters this year. She needed to run the shorter distance to make her more aggressive.

    "I get too complacent," said Felix, who was fifth in the 100 on Saturday.

    A former USC sprinter from Los Angeles, Felix got a good start from an outside lane. By the time the runners came off the curve, Felix held a slight advantage over two-time 100 gold medalist Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce of Jamaica.

    That bode well for Felix, known for a graceful stride in the backstretch. With about 50 meters left, the American set a blistering pace to win easily.

    Felix put her heart and soul into winning Wednesday. The three-time world champion said she would have given up those titles for one Olympic gold medal in the 200 meters.

    "I knew how bad she wanted it," Campbell-Brown said.

    "The moments that motivated me were losing on the big stage," Felix said.

    Jeter also finished strong, and became the first American since Florence Griffith-Joyner in 1988 to win medals in both the 100 and 200 at the Olympics.

    It also was a morale-boosting moment for American sprinters, who have been schooled by the Jamaicans for the past four years. The turnabout in the 200 brings drama to the 400 relay Saturday, though the Jamaicans will be favored.

    Fraser-Pryce, who won the silver medal, can't predict what will happen this weekend. But she's glad the 200 is over.

    "If they ever put together a field like that again, I won't run it," she said.

    There's fast. Then there's Allyson Felix time.