Tobi Amusan and Noah Lyles excelled breaking long-standing Weltklasse meeting records that had previously been held by legends of the sport as several newly crowned world champions triumphed at the Wanda Diamond League Final in Zurich on Thursday.
Nigeria’s world record-holder Amusan capped a sensational season by adding the Diamond Trophy to her ever-expanding prize cabinet, beating a highly competitive field in a thrilling 100m hurdles final.
The 25-year-old is no stranger to breaking records – her world record of 12.12 was set in the semifinals at the World Championships in Oregon, where she went on to get gold, and her Commonwealth title was gained in a Games record. This time it was a meeting record that fell, Amusan running 12.29 to take a tenth of a second off the mark that had been set by USA’s multiple Olympic and world gold medallist Gail Devers in 2000.
It ensured a clear win, and in a field featuring a whole host of other global medallists it was USA’s 22-year-old Tia Jones, the 2018 world U20 champion, who secured second place in 12.40 – the second-fastest time of her career so far behind the 12.38 PB she set for the runner-up spot in Brussels. Jamaica’s world silver medallist Britany Anderson was third with 12.42, while Puerto Rico’s Olympic champion Jasmine Camacho-Quinn finished fourth in 12.49.
“Everyone has doubted me. I just had to prove myself, that I have got it,” said Amusan, who also won the African title this year. “I am just so thankful for all of this season. I am full of emotions. Now, vacation, rest and then back to practice.”
Lyles was also close to matching the kind of form he showed when winning at the World Championships.
Noah Lyles broke a ten-year-old meeting record belonging to Usain Bolt as he claimed his fifth career Diamond Trophy at the Wanda Diamond League Final in Zurich on Thursday.
The US sprinter, drawn in lane six, was already up on Olympic silver medallist and defending Diamond League champion Kenny Bednarek half way round the bend. By the time he entered the straight, Lyles was clearly ahead of the rest of the field – and that was before he’d unleashed his trademark strong finish.
He crossed the line in 19.52, an incredible half a second clear of his opponents, and broke Usain Bolt’s meeting record of 19.66 from 10 years ago.
Canada’s Aaron Brown placed second in a photofinish from Alexander Ogando of the Dominican Republic, both men clocking 20.02.
Fellow world champion Shericka Jackson’s winning margin was even greater in the women’s half-lap sprint.
Just as she did at the World Championships, the Jamaican dominated the race to win in 21.80 from Olympic bronze medallist Gabby Thomas (22.38), who was returning to action following a mid-season injury.