By Neil Leverett
- The Netherland’s Sifan Hassan breaks 23-year women’s Mile World record at Stade Louis II Stadium in Monaco
- In spectacular Round 9 meet, Noah Lyles beaten in 100m by Justin Gatlin, as Shaunae Miller-Uibo notches first win of season in 200m
- British duo Laura Muir and Lynsey Sharp finish third and fourth in women’s 800m
STADE LOUIS II, MONACO – Sifan Hassan’s breaking of a 23-year-old women’s Mile world record, was the highlight of a spectacular Round 9 of the 2019 Diamond League in Monaco.
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Hassan breaks 23-year world record
As the Diamond League moved to the home of the rich and famous for Round 9, Monaco to was witness to a spectacular night of athletics at Stade Louis II Stadium, as Sifan Hassan broke the world record in the women’s Brave Like Gabe Mile, in a time of 4:12:33.
Breaking Svetlana Masterkova‘s 23-year record set in Zurich, the Dutch middle and long-distance runner ran a stunning final lap, taking over two seconds off her PB time to stun a packed house in the principality.
The Ethiopian-born 26-year-old and bronze medalist in London two years ago, was winner in Stanford last month over 5000m, but again proved she will be the one to beat in Doha at the end of the season at both distances.
Finishing over five second ahead of Britain’s Laura Weightman – who herself ran a superb final 400m – and Canada’s Gabriela Debues-Stafford, Hassan was visibly stunned as she celebrated with the Briton.
Food for thought for Lyles, Coleman
With the traditional blue-riband race of the evening rather left in the shadows after Hassan’s incredible run, Justin Gatlin then pipped Noah Lyles to win the men’s 100m in a time of 9:91, as the world champion beat the latest US collegiate sensation.
As Michael Rodgers completed an American 1-2-3 in Monaco, Gatlin, who won gold in London in 2017 to a chorus of boos looks to be coming good again at the right time, after back-to-back wins here and in Lausanne.
For Lyles after all the talk around him this season, finishing runner-up to man 16 years his senior is quite the wake up call. As potentially the third part of the American tri-force, Christian Coleman would have been a keen observer, but who is expected to be in London next week – together with Lyles.
With all three men sharing 100m Diamond League wins this season, Gatlin’s win has amped up the pressure ahead of a a likely fiery US Trials, before what is set for a spectacular end-0f-season clash in the Middle East in September.
Productive outing for Muir
Scottish duo Laura Muir and Lynsey Sharp finished third and fourth respectively in a non-points women’s 800m, with Stockholm winner Ajee Wilson taking the victory ahead of Jamaica’s Natoya Goule.
As the 1500m took a week off before the Anniversary Games in London next weekend, Muir, who finished second behind world and Olympic Gold Medalist Faith Kipyegon in Stanford a fortnight ago, had a strong showing in her weaker event to clock a PB of 1:58:42.
Britain’s Diamond League winner last season has struggled to recapture her form of the last 12 months, with just a single win in Sweden to her name thus far, but with two meetings in the capital in London and Birmingham to come in the next month, the European champion will be keen to build momentum for Qatar.
Miller-Uibo comes to the party
In a heavyweight women’s 200m – but minus Britain’s Dina Asher-Smith – Shaunae Miller-Uibo ran a SB of 22:09 ahead of Olympic champion Elaine Thompson and world champion Daphne Schippers, to cruise to a first Diamond League victory of the season.
An Olympic champion at 400m three years ago in Rio, the Bahamian sprinter has suggested she may focus more on the shorter sprint event in the run-up to Doha, and made an emphatic statement of intent in Monaco.
As Miller-Uibo raced away from the gun, both Schippers and Thompson trailed in her wake down the home straight with the Commonwealth champion easing up somewhat across line.
With Asher-Smith absent as she prepares for a British meet double, however, the Bromley Harrier will raring to go in the capital next weekend, with a potential showdown with Schippers, Miller-Uibo, Thompson and Blessing Okagbare in the offing in a week’s time.
McLaughin continues US hurdles domination
In the women’s 400m hurdles, American 19-year-old Sydney McLaughlin backed up her win in Oslo earlier this year with victory in Monaco, clocking a world leading time of 53:32, ahead of compatriot Ashley Spencer and Zuzana Hejnova of the Czech Republic.
The New Jersey athlete, already tenth on the world’s fastest time list having set a personal best of 50:07 in 2018, hared along the back straight and overtook her rivals on the bend, storming away over the final 50m.
With fellow American duo Shamier Little and Olympic champion Dalilah Muhammad missing out in the principality – themselves Diamond League winner in 2019 also – the upcoming US Trials for the World Championships may be a greater indicator of her chances in Doha.
However, with the teenager already being talked up as a candidate to break Yuliya Pechonkina‘s 16-year world record, McLaughin did little to douse the huge amount of hype being built around her.
Round ten of the IAAF Diamond League 2019 moves onto London next weekend, for the Muller Anniversary Games at the London Stadium
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