March 10, 2012

Justin Gatlin's fear of fading into obscurity disappeared in a sprint for gold at the world indoor championships.

Shortly after teammate Ashton Eaton set a heptathlon world record on an all-American day in Istanbul, Gatlin earned his first gold medal since serving a four-year doping suspension and Sanya Richards-Ross won the 400 meters by a wide margin.

Gatlin chased down Nesta Carter to win the 60 meters in 6.46 seconds - 0.08 seconds better than his Jamaican rival.

"It feels like I am reborn again," said Gatlin, insisting he would be gunning for the London Olympics at age 30, eight years after winning the 100 title at the 2004 Athens Games.

Gatlin rallied after Carter had a fast start.

"I just went and grabbed him and passed him," Gatlin said.

After his suspension ended in mid-2010, Gatlin worked off the pounds and got the spring back in his sprint.

"The name of the game is relevancy. One of my biggest fears was to be ignored," Gatlin said.

No more.

Gatlin was suspended after testing positive for excessive testosterone in 2006. In 2003, he won his first world indoor title with the same time.

"So it was a rebirth," he said, less than five months before the London Games.

However, bronze-medalist Dwain Chambers is still not sure if he will be allowed to compete at the Olympics in his home country.

Like Gatlin, he was suspended for doping. Now he is looking for redemption, too, but his own Olympic federation refuses to take former doping offenders on its team.

On Monday, the Court of Arbitration for Sport will hold a hearing, and a decision whether to overturn the ban is expected in April.

"I have no idea what my future holds," Chambers said.

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