Gold medalist Sydney McLaughlin of the United States poses by a sign after winning the final of the women’s 400-meter hurdles at the World Athletics Championships on Friday. Ashley Landis/AP hide caption
For the fourth time in 13 months, the 22-year-old McLaughlin set the world record. On Friday, she ran the 400-meter hurdles at world championships in 50.68 seconds. She shattered her old mark by 0.73 seconds, a ridiculous number for a race of this distance and an amount of time that, in the world before McLaughlin, it had taken 33 years to trim.
She beat second-place finisher Femke Bol of the Netherlands by 1.59 seconds. McLaughlin’s main rival, Dalilah Muhammad, finished third in 53.13 seconds, a time that would’ve won the world title with ease a mere seven years ago.
And yet, as McLaughlin summed up her takeaways from the evening — an evening in which she delivered in a race she has turned into one of track’s must-see events — she was far from ready to declare she had run the perfect race.