Zion Gordon crouched tight in Lane 5.
The hot Albuquerque sun glimmered off the light tips of his hair while he leaned back and forth and gripped the track to his liking. Every few moments he lifted his eyes, those clear white circles surrounding his pupil like bullseyes reflecting his target: the finish line 110 meters in front of him, and the 10 hurdles between him and that line.
He sat calm and collected while the gun raised high into the cloudless New Mexico sky and the crowd grew silent. In a moment he'd shoot out and onwards against perhaps the most competitive 110 Hurdle fields in the country so far, but for Gordon, he knew he wasn't alone in this ball of anticipation: three lanes to his right was in-season rival, and post-season teammate and friend Cameron Harris.
Two of Colorado's premier hurdlers were on the starting line of the 110H at the Great Southwest Classic, and if the steamy dry heat of New Mexico's high desert wasn't enough for the sweating crowd, Gordon and Harris sure did bring more of it.
When the gun shot out, sending eight of the best hurdlers in the country backwards down the runway, five emerged unwilling to relent even an inch.
It was the kind of race both "Flash" Gordon and Harris were well accustomed to, and as the race dwindled down into the final meters, it was clear this one would be decided in a lean - and not just for the title, or the runner-up position, or even third, but the top five were sprinting within fractions of a second of each other, feet apart down the track, this would be close.
When the five cleared the final hurdle the crowd roared in that classic crescendo that accompanies tight finishes.
And then the lean - almost a dive - came.
Gordon threw his head down and arms back, timing his lean to perfection, while the remaining four did the same, only fractions of a second before or after.
As they crashed across the line there was no clear winner, not yet, and that crescendo from the crowd followed quickly with that classic "oh!!!"
Everyone knew they just saw something crazy, and it wasn't just how close the race was...
But when the results flashed Gordon had the win, and Harris was just over a tenth of a second behind his teammate. The duo shared smiles of satisfaction, even more so because of their times - Gordon dropped a 13.62 for the fourth fastest time in the country, and it was a personal best. Harris cracked 14 seconds for the first time - and in a big way. His 13.77 was a PR by over a quarter of a second.
When the dust had settled five dipped under 14 seconds, 13.77 seconds in fact, to combine for the fastest 110H field in the country.
And that was just the boy's 110 hurdles...