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5 athletics world records broken ahead of Tokyo Olympics 2020 

Sydney McLaughlin stunned herself after she broke the WR in 400m hurdle at the US Olympic Track and Field Trials 2021
Sydney McLaughlin stunned herself after she broke the WR in 400m hurdle at the US Olympic Track and Field Trials 2021
ANALYST

The track and field events at the Tokyo Olympics 2020 promises to be a thrilling ride for the fans. Tokyo will see a great mix of breakthrough stars and veterans competing for top honors and sporting greatness.

On their way to the Tokyo Olympics, these athletes have brought out their competitive best and broken several national, continental, game, and world records.

As the athletes prepare to light up Tokyo’s National Stadium with their brilliance, here is a look at the five world records broken in the recent past in athletics and the sportspeople who smashed them.

5 athletics records broken ahead of Tokyo Olympics 2020

#5. Men’s shot put world record by Ryan Crouser

Ryan Crouser alongside the display board flashing his WR in shot put at US Olympic Track and Field Trials 2021
Ryan Crouser alongside the display board flashing his WR in shot put at US Olympic Track and Field Trials 2021

The 2016 Olympic Champion in shot put, American Ryan Crouser, created a new world record in shot put when he threw a distance of 23.37m at the US Olympic Track and Field Trials 2021. Crouser’s world record moment came in the final of the shot put event on his fourth throw. With that throw, Crouser broke the previous record of 23.12m set by compatriot Randy Barnes in 1990.

“It was one that I’ve been after for a long, long time.” Crouser said after getting his name inserted in the record books.

Also read: 5 US athletes who should win gold medals at Tokyo Olympics 2020

#4. Women’s 10,000m and 5000m world records by Letesenbet Gidey

Letesenbet Gidey in action
Letesenbet Gidey in action

Ethiopian long-distance runner Letesenbet Gidey completed women’s 10,000m in 29:01.03 to set a new world record. Gidey was competing in the Ethiopian Olympic Trials. Gidey’s time was five seconds better than the previous world record of 29:06.82. Dutch runner Sifan Hassan held the previous world record which sadly stood for only two days.

Gidey had also set a world record in 5000m in Spain last year by clocking 14:06.62. Gidey has become the first woman since Norway's Ingrid Kristiansen to simultaneously hold world records in both the 5,000m and 10,000m records. Kristiansen held the two records between 1986-1993.

“I expected to run the world record, Next I will try again, to run maybe 28:56.” Gidey said after the race.

#3. Men’s 400m hurdle world record by Karsten Warholm

Karsten Warholm celebrates after breaking the world record in 400m hurdles
Karsten Warholm celebrates after breaking the world record in 400m hurdles

Norway’s star runner Karsten Warholm finished the men’s 400m hurdle in 46.70s to set a new world record. Warholm was running in front of his home crowd at the Diamond League meeting in Oslo.

Warholm beat 1992 Olympic champion Kevin Young's mark of 46.78s. The 25-year-old is also a two-time world champion. Warholm will now be one of the favorites alongside America's Rai Benjamin and Qatar's Abderrahman Samba to clinch gold in men’s 400m hurdle.

"This was just a perfect moment, everyone's talking about this world record that's been standing for many, many years - it's older than me actually.” Warholm said after smashing the record which had stood for 29 years.

#2. Women’s 400m hurdle world record by Sydney McLaughlin

Sprinter Sydney McLaughlin scripted history at the recent US Olympic Track and Field Trials 2021 when she became the first woman to complete a 400m hurdle in under 52s.

McLaughlin’s time of 51.90s in the 400m final at the US Trials helped her finish first, ahead of arch-rival Dalilah Muhammad, on her way to creating a new world record. McLaughlin beat the previous world record held by Dalilah Muhammad by more than a quarter of a second.

Incidentally, Dalilah Muhammad entered the record books when she had finished the 400m hurdle at World Athletics Championships Doha 2019 in 52.16s. McLaughlin finished second in that race, just 0.07s behind Dalilah Muhammad.

“I’m going to cherish this for the rest of my life.” McLaughlin said knowing that she had created a world record.

#1. Women’s 20km race walk by Yang Jiayu

Yang Jiayu celebrates after winning the women's 20km walk at the 16th IAAF World Athletics Championships London
Yang Jiayu celebrates after winning the women's 20km walk at the 16th IAAF World Athletics Championships London

Chinese racewalker Yang Jiyayu created the world record in women’s 20km race walk at the Chinese Race Walking Championships in Huangshan in March. Yang Jiayu shaved off 49 seconds from the previous world record as she crossed the finish line in 1:23.00.

The previous world record was held by Yang Jiyayu’s compatriot Liu Hong in 2015, when the latter had finished the race in 1:23.49. Yang Jiyayu won silver in the event at the 2017 World Championships in London when she clocked 1:26.18.

“My goal for the race was to break the world record,” Yang said after the race.

Also read: 3 supermoms to watch out for as Tokyo Olympics allows breastfeeding athletes to bring babies


Edited by Rohit Mishra
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