It didn’t take Karsten Warholm long to remind the sporting world that the 400m hurdles world record is under assault each time he steps on the track. Even in this coronavirus pandemic-shortened season, when competitive opportunities are at premium. He just makes them count.
At the EBS Herculis Meeting in Monaco, the 24-year-old Norwegian scorched to a 47.10 performance in his first 400m hurdles race in more than 10 months.
Yesterday, at the Bauhaus Galan in Stockholm, he went considerably faster, clocking 46.87 to clip 0.05 from his own European record, to solidify his No.2 spot all-time and to become the only man who has broken the event’s 47-second barrier twice. And, for several fleeting moments, lending the impression that Kevin Young’s 46.78 world record set at the 1992 Olympics, four years before Warholm was born, would be broken on that sunny Sunday afternoon at Stockholm’s storied 1912 Olympic Stadium. He just had one more hurdle to clear.
He did – but he clipped it. Just hard enough to strafe his rhythm and add enough ticks to the clock to once again push the record just out of reach. He covered his face with his hands as he crossed the line, but later wasn’t especially disappointed.
“I hit that last hurdle because I went really hard for the first nine, and stuff like this happens,” said Warholm, who has raced to the last two world titles .
“You know, I’m always telling myself to be a warrior when I go out on the track. I think I was rewarded by just going all in at the end and I got a great time. It’s a great lesson for me to always run until the finish line.
“We learn. We learn.” – WORLD ATHLETICS