Originally posted on FOX Sports  |  Last updated 8/10/13
Olympic champion Ashton Eaton held a narrow lead over Michael Schrader after three events of the decathlon on Saturday at the world championships. Eaton is the world-record holder in the demanding decathlon competition that goes over two days. The American earned 2,755 points going into the final two events of the first day, with Schrader trailing with 2,707. Schrader is one of two Germans expected to be among Eaton's closest rivals, along with European champion Pascal Behrenbruch. Eaton got off to a good start by running a season's best 10.35 seconds in the opening 100 meters in warm and humid weather and a nearly empty Luzhniki Stadium. He retained the lead after leaping 7.73 meters in the long jump. The shot put has never been Eaton's strong event and he lost some ground by managing only 14.39 meters, the 12th best distance, a meter shorter than his personal best earlier this season. Behrenbruch topped the shot put with 15.86 meters that left him in ninth place overall. He is the only athlete this year that has gone beyond 8,500 points. Gunnar Nixon, the 20-year-old American junior world champion competing in his first major meet, was third after three events, with 2,677 points, helped by a second-place 7.85 meters in the long jump. Two-time defending champion Trey Hardee of the United States was fifth with 2,634 points, behind Damian Warner of Canada with 2,642. Hardee was also the 2012 Olympic silver medalist. The competition on the first day ends with the high jump and 400 meters, before concluding with the last five events on Sunday. Eaton broke the world record at the U.S. Olympic Trials with a score of 9,039 last year, before confirming that performance with a gold medal at the 2012 London Olympics. The American came to Moscow sitting only 13th place on the world list, with a season-best of 8,291 points for the title at the U.S. nationals. But he has also set personal bests in five events and is still the man to beat.
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