American Sydney McLaughlin has shattered her own 400m hurdles world record at the world athletics championships, leaving fans lost for words.
McLaughlin, the reigning Olympic champion, was the red-hot favourite and absolutely smashed her own world record by nearly a second in the final on Saturday in Eugene, Oregon.
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The 22-year-old was streaks ahead of the field well before the turn and left her world-class rivals in her wake to cross the line in 50.68sec.
The incredible time chopped nearly a full second off her previous mark of 51.41, set at last year’s Tokyo Olympics.
The Netherlands’ Femke Bol claimed silver in 52.27 and the USA’s Dalilah Muhammad bronze won bronze in 53.13.
Bol and Muhammad are the second and third fastest women of all-time in the 400m hurdles, but Mclaughlin completely outclassed her nearest rivals as she finished the race more than 20m ahead of them.
“This is utterly staggering,” the commentator proclaimed.
“Take a moment to savour this. We’re watching a once in a generation athlete performing at the peak of her power.
“How can she be that far clear from the second and third fastest athletes ever?”
Viewers couldn’t believe their eyes as the sheer dominance of McLaughlin’s historic performance sunk in.
CODE Sports’ Lachlan McKirdy tweeted: “Sydney McLaughlin smashes the 400m hurdle world record by almost a full second. My goodness.”
In just 13 months, McLaughlin has broken the world record four times and taken it down from 52.16 to 50.68.
Her time would have finished seventh in the flat 400m final, prompting fans to ponder whether McLaughlin could also dominant that event.
NBC Sports’ Tim Layden tweeted: “2023 World and 2024 Olympic schedules have to allow Sydney McLaughlin do 400H/400m double. (Both were run tonight). Sport needs it.”