2017 Athletissima Diary: Wayde Van Niekerk glides to a 400 meters in 43.62


The 400 meters is one of the toughest events in our sport. The human body is not made to run all out for that long. Most humans can run about 300 meters all out before the body shuts down. Clyde Hart, the USATF Hall of Fame coach who taught Baylor runners how to run the 400 meters, including one successful guy named Micheal Johnson, looks at the 400 meters as a case in energy management.

I have not spoken to the Coach of Wayde Van Niekerk, but I want to. In watching her speak about Wayde and his training, I am fascinated by her observation skills and comments on how Wayde works in training. Wayde Van Niekerk is in the fine hands of an excellent coach.

Last night was another example of the controlled agression that Wayde Van Niekerk possesses. HIs 400 meters was modest for the first 300 meters, then, a quick burst, and as quick as the burst hit, the burst was over. Physics got this young man across the finishi line, and the most modest energy expenditure for a 43.62 effort that this writer has ever witnessed.

Wayde Van Niekerk can break the WR nearly at will.

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