Belgacom Memorial Van Damme: Aman 1:42.37, Bolt 9.80, Shelly-Ann 10.72, , courtesy of Alfons Juck, EME NEWs

Mohammed Aman, leading at Nike Pre Classic, June 2013, 
photo by

This was my first time to King Baudouin Stadium, truly a perfect cathedral of sport. 47,500 fans loved their two plus hours of competition. There was lots of cheering for Usain Bolt, Dafne Schippers, Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce, and others. During the 5,000 meters, the crowd went nuts, when, in French, the announcer noted that Belgium was leading Scotland in World Cup soccer qualifying! 

Renaud Lavillenie took a Sergey Bubka meet record away, but the race of the night was Dylan, Jonathan and Kevin Borlee all in the 400 meters. The story book ending would have been Kevin Borlee winning, but Kevin and Martyn Rooney ran 45.04 and Rooney got the nod. 

Needless to say, one agent was overheard saying, " Well, Rooney will not be racing here again."  Yes, that was tongue in cheek.

What was not tongue in cheek was the quality of the meet and the way the Van Damme Memorial meet celebrates and entertains! 

What a fantastic meet! 

Aman 1:42.37, Bolt 9.80, Shelly-Ann 10.72

BRUSSELS (BEL, Sep 6): The fourth IAAF Diamond League ended on a high note before a sell out crowd of King Baudouin Stadium. In total 3 meet records and 2 world leads, some excellent marks in the nice summer evening. Bolt delivered what was expected, his second fastest of the year, Aman possibly the best result of the day in the men 800 m. Shelly-Ann was very fast in her first 100 since Moscow. 

Event by event 


100 m (non-DL): Bolt faster than in Zurich in 9.80 (+0.6), his second fastest of 2013 and four other sub 10 (Rodgers 9.90 SB, Carter 9.94, Gatlin 9.94, KBC 9.98).

200 m: Weir in nice duel beat Ashmeade (19.87 and 19.93, -0.2) and gets the Diamond, among top 4 times of their careers. Dix coming back as he was the best of the rest 20.12.

400 m (non-DL): Rooney is the fast finisher and spoiled the Belgian party by 0.004 (45.042 to 45.046) over Jonathan Borlee. Third Galvan 45.35 PB.

800 m: The race of the evening as Aman improves his NR, gets WL and second best ever by a junior 1:42.37. He is now 9th best perfomer ever. Three others under 1:43, Symmonds 1:43.03 (2nd best of career), F. Rotich 1:43.22 PB and Lewandowski 1:43.83.

5000 m: Alamirew over Gebrhiwot for the Diamond 12:58.75 and12:59.33, but between them the ever-young Bernard Lagat 12:58.99 (his 6th career sub 13). Best Kenyan Soi 13:01.00 as fourth and fifth Rupp 13:01.37 PB. PB also for steepler Jager 13:02.40 as 8th.

400mH: Gordon confirmed his gold medal from Luzhniki in 48.32. Cisneros in close finish of a trio 48.59 as Culson (was leading until the last hurdle) over Tinsley by 3 thousands (48.591 and 48.594). Diamond for Culson.

PV: Old meet record has gone (595 twice by Bubka and twice by Harting) as Lavillenie cleared nicely 596 and then tried at French record 604. The rest well beaten and that means also the fourth Diamond for the French acrobat.

TJ: Only Tamgho was able to go over 17 with 17.27 and 17.30. 

SP: Whiting is ruling after Moscow, another clear one with 21.45. Ivanov 20.95 and Prasil 20.79 beat World medalist Armstrong 20.76 and Oly champ Majewski 20.76.

JT: Top ones had one good throw. Pitkamaki in fourth 87.32 enough for win, Vesely in first 86.67 enough for the Diamond.


100 m: Shelly-Ann is really fast, mentally still high even when legs tired, her 10.72 (-0.3) was the meet record and missed her own WL by 0.01 only, also 3rd fastest of her career. Sub 11 also for Anderson 10.97 and Russell 10.99.

400 m: Fast begin by Hastings was this time enough as she had maintained her speed in 50.36 good win. Diamond holder Montsho 2nd 50.41 and World champ Ohuruogu 5th 50.95.

1000 m (non-DL): World lead 2:35.43 for Kenyan Nelly Jepkosgei after good pacing. Second Chebet also PB 2:35.73 and third pre-race WL holder Kupina 2:36.45.

1500 m: Aregawi remains unbeaten at this distance in 2013 with another clear win 4:05.41. More long distance runner M. Cherono 2nd4:05.82 over World medalist Obiri 4:06.92. Simpson only 10th 4:10.70.

SC: Chemos found the power to win after last hurdle in duel with Ethiopians. Reward for her Diamond and MR 9:15.06. Second Assefa by 0.20.

100 mH: Rested Harper who came after Moscow later won after Zagreb her second post Worlds race in season fastest for her 12.48 (+1.0). Pearson second 12.63 and Billaud in 12.69 beat the World bronze winner Porter 12.78 (her first race since Moscow).

HJ: Shkolina cleared two meters and that was enough for the Diamond. Chicherova tried at 202 to change it, but it did not happen.

TJ: Ibarguen is clear queen in this event, she is unbeaten this season, 14.49 (+1.1) this time. Looks like 15 will not be broken this year.

DT: Perkovic aftetr Zagreb loss made sure in 1st throw all is clear and with 67.04 she exactly did what was necessary.  Lewis-Smallwood beat the other Moscow medalists.

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