Sydney McLaughlin broke the 400m hurdles world record for the third time last year, this time at the U.S. Outdoor Track and Field Championships.
The Olympic champion clocked 51.41 seconds in Eugene, Ore., bettering her previous Olympic Games record of 51.46. Overall, McLaughlin brought back the record of 52.16 last year.
“Anything is possible every time I hit the track,” said McLaughlin, who planned to celebrate by eating “real food in addition to veggies,” like a cheeseburger or pancakes. “The goal is to improve myself and push the limits.”
McLaughlin’s legendary trainer, Bob Kerseesaid McLaughlin will eventually turn his sights to the 400m flat and chase that world record (aged 37), possibly after capping off this season with a world title in three weeks, NBC Sports analyst Ato Boldon said. For now, McLaughlin is aiming for those worlds, also in Eugene, where she will try to complete her collection with a first world title.
“I’m just learning racing in general. As I progressed over the years, I learned the 400m hurdles,” she said. “It’s a really cool feeling to have a race plan instead of just going out and racing.”
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Also on Saturday, farewell Allyson Felix probably clinched a spot on his 10th and final world championship team by placing sixth in the 400m. Talitha Diggwhose Olympian mother competed in her last Nationals the year before Felix competed in his first Nationals, won to qualify for the World Championships in three weeks, also in Eugene.
“Glad we don’t have an open 400m anymore,” Felix said, adding that she wanted to run the mixed 4x400m relay at the world championships and would do the women’s 4x400m if asked. “I came here and gave it my all, tried to position myself for a stint and managed to do it. I can not complain.
Michel Normand won the men’s 400m in 43.56, bettering his own fastest time in the world this year. Norman was the fastest 400m runner in the world in the last Olympic cycle, but did not win any individual medals between the World Championships and the Olympics. Surprise finalist Allison Champion improved his personal best from 44.29 to 43.70.
Keni HarrisonOlympic silver medalist in the 100m hurdles and world record holder, won in 12.35, edging the Olympic gold medalist Jasmine Camacho Quinn of Puerto Rico as the fastest in the world this year. Harrison preceded Alaysha Johnson one hundredth. Nia Ali did not start the final but has a World Team bye as defending champion.
Rio Olympic silver medalist Evan Jaegerwho until April spent almost four years between two 3000m steeplechase races due to injuries, took second place and earned the standard time to make the world team.
“It’s been a long, hard journey to rebuild my body and my confidence,” Jager, 33, told Lewis Johnson on NBC. “I’m really proud of myself.”
Sinclaire Johnson won the women’s 1500m in 4:03.29 to make her first world team. She is joined by Olympic finalists cory mcgee and Elle Saint-Pierre.
Old Oregon duck Cooper Teare won the men’s 1,500m in the absence of two other former Ducks — 2016 Olympic champion Matthew Centrowitz (knee surgery) and Olympic trials champion Cole Hocker (eliminated in the first round). Teare missed the Olympic team in the 5000m by one spot.
All the favorites came out of the first round of the 200m — world champion Noah Lyles (who has an automatic spot on the World Team), 18 Erryon Knighton, Fred Kerley and Olympic bronze medalist Gaby Thomas, Sha’Carri Richardson and Abby Steiner.
Likewise in the 110m hurdles (world champion Grant Holloway and Devon Allen).
The semi-finals and finals of these events will take place on Sunday.
olympic silver medalist Chris Nilsen won the pole vault with a clearance of 5.70 meters. Sam Kendrick scratched but can still participate in the world championships by derogation as reigning world champion.
Kara Winger won her ninth U.S. javelin title and qualified for her sixth World Team by reaching the qualifying standard on her final throw at her final Nationals before retiring.
Maggie Malone, the world No. 1 this year, committed a fault on her three throws. She could still go to the world championships, since she is one of two American women with the qualifying criterion.
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