It’s happened again.
For the second day in a row, the final of an Olympic 400 m hurdles was a tight contest – two athletes broke the previous world record in the event and the third-place finisher was the fourth-fastest.
This time it has come in the women’s category.
Americans Sydney McLaughlin and Delilah Muhammad entered the final as the favorites to win the gold. McLaughlin had set the previous world record in June with a time of 51.90 seconds. He and Mohamed both topped the Olympic Stadium in Tokyo on Wednesday morning.
McLaughlin finished almost half a second faster, taking the gold with a run of 51.46 seconds. Muhammad, who won the event at Rio 2016, won the silver medal with a time of 51.58.
“What a great race,” McLaughlin said. “I am grateful to be here to celebrate that extraordinary race and to represent my country.”
Femke Boll of the Netherlands won the bronze medal in 52.03 seconds. Bol’s time was the fourth fastest run ever in the event.
Amazing similarities: The men’s 400m hurdles was played almost evenly on Tuesday. Norway’s Karsten Warholm set a world record while topping the race. He and second-place finisher Rae Benjamin both beat Warholm’s previous record to win gold and silver, respectively, like McLaughlin and Muhammad.
“I really can’t get it straight in my head yet. I’m sure I’ll process it and celebrate later,” McLaughlin said after the women’s race.
Brazil’s bronze medalist Alisson dos Santos ran the fastest run in history for the fourth time in history to win bronze in the men’s event – just like Bol.