MOSCOW, Aug. 11 (UPI) -- Usain Bolt, with rain pouring down and lightning crackling in the background, won the 100-meter gold medal Sunday at the world track and field championships.
The two-time Olympic 100 champion from Jamaica overcame a poor start and ran down American Justin Gatlin to make up for a disappointing performance at the world meet two years ago.
Bolt, 26, turned in a time of 9.77 to finish out an evening that also saw Ashton Eaton and Brittany Reese win the first two gold medals for the United States in the nine-day competition.
Although he did not threaten the world record of 9.58 he set four years ago in Berlin, Bolt's time was extraordinary considering his lackluster start and the stormy conditions in which the race was run.
The off-and-on rain that plagued the day's events returned just before the start of the 100-meter final and a streak of lightning crossed the sky as Bolt was claiming yet another international triumph. At the 2011 world championships in South Korea, Bolt was disqualified for a false start.
Gatlin won the silver medal in the time of 9.85 and Jamaican Nesta Carter was third in 9.95.
Eaton, who won the Olympic decathlon title in London last year, repeated that victory Sunday with 8,809 points. He turned in the best time in the 400-meter dash on Saturday and then finished first in the 110-meter hurdles on Sunday to pull away from the field.
Michael Schrader of Germany won the silver medal, finishing 139 points behind Eaton, and Damian Warner of Canada took the bronze.
Reese won her third straight long jump world title to go with the Olympic crown she captured last summer. Reese jumped 23-0, outdistancing Blessing Okagbare of Nigeria by less than an inch.
The other gold medals awarded Sunday went to Aleksandr Ivanov of Russia in the 20-kilometer walk, Sandra Perkovic of Croatia in the discus throw and Tirunesh Dibaba of Ethopia in the women's 10,000-meter run.
Through two days of competition and eight medal events, the United States was the only country with two gold medals. The Americans had three medals overall along with Ethopia and Kenya.