ZURICH – Karsten Warholm ran the second-fastest time in history to win the men’s 400 meters hurdles in 46.92 seconds at the Diamond League finals on Thursday.
The 23-year-old world champion from Norway took 0.20 seconds off his lifetime best, but was 0.14 behind the 27-year-old world record set by Kevin Young winning the 1992 Barcelona Olympics title. Young was in Zurich for Thursday’s race.
Warholm was pressed hard by Rai Benjamin, who clocked 46.98, lifting the 22-year-old American into a tie for third all-time. Track great Edwin Moses is now fifth on that list with 47.02.
“It was crazy,” Warholm said. “I knew that I will do a good time but this race and with this new (personal best), it*s just amazing.”
Four world-leading marks were set on a warm evening at the storied Weltklasse meeting, one month before the world championships open in Qatar, where the 400 hurdles is shaping up to be a standout duel.
Shaunae Miller-Uibo ran 21.74 in the women’s 200; Juan Miguel Echevarria’s opening leap of 8.65 meters won the men’s long jump; and Lijiao Gong’s 20.31 meters took the women’s shot put.
In the men’s 100, Noah Lyles surged late to win in 9.98, leaving world champion Justin Gatlin back in fourth.
Racing into a slight headwind, Lyles trailed late in the race before blasting past his American teammate Gatlin in the next lane.
“I followed my race plan, my execution was great,” Lyles said. “The race was not as fast as I wanted.”
Lyles will focus on the 200 at the IAAF World Athletics Championships, which will be held Sept. 28 to Oct. 6 in Doha, where the 37-year-old Gatlin could be the best American hope for the 100 title.
Gatlin timed 10.08 behind runner-up Zhenye Lie of China, who clocked 10.04 and 2011 world champion Yohan Blake of Jamaica, who was third in 10.07.
Miller-Uibo, the Olympic champion over 400, is now the 11th-fastest woman all-time in the 200. Sporting green-streaked hair, Miller-Uibo’s personal best was a huge 0.26 faster than Elaine Thompson’s previous world-leading mark in 2019.
Dina Asher-Smith of Britain was second in 22.08 and Thompson, the Olympic 100 and 200 champion from Jamaica, clocked 22.44 in third.
In the long jump, Echevarria set a world-leading mark by 24 cm.
Gong took the women’s shot put victory from Chase Easley of the U.S., who set a lifetime best of 19.68 meters. Gong’s 20.31 mark was 47 centimeters beyond her own world’s best this season.
Donavan Brazier of the United States won the 800 in a personal best 1 minute, 42.70 seconds after overhauling Nijel Amos in the closing meters.
Salwa Eid Naser, the 2017 world silver medalist, won the women’s 400 in 50.24. The Nigeria-born runner who competes for Bahrain is unbeaten over 400 this season.
Sydney McLaughlin led an American podium sweep of the 400 hurdles in her season-best time of 52.85. Sifan Hassan of the Netherlands won the 1,500 in 3.57.08. World record holder Beatrice Chepkoech took the 3,000 steeplechase in 9:01.71.
In another field event win for China, Lyu Huihui won the women’s javelin at 66.88. Magnus Kirt won the men’s javelin at 89.13. Both were more than a meter behind their world-leading season’s best.
The Diamond League finals are split over two meetings, and are completed next week in Brussels.
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