Stuart Weir did this piece on both the 110m hurdles and the 400m hurdles at Monaco. And Stuart’s right, both events are amazing!
Two intriguing hurdles races
The men’s sprint hurdles race was positively loaded with the current world champion, Grant Holloway, the 2016 Olympic silver medalist Orlando Ortega and the 2018 World Indoor Champion, Andy Pozzi in the field.
Andy Pozzi is in the form of his life. In 2020 he has had seven indoor and six outdoor hurdles races (including prelims) and won them all. One that is an impressive record the quality of the opposition in Monaco was that the higher level.
8/14 Diamond League Monaco
â™¦ï¸ŽMen 110mH (+0.8)
ðŸ¥‡Orlando ORTEGAðŸ‡ªðŸ‡¸13.11 â€»WL
ðŸ¥ˆAdrew POZZIðŸ‡¬ðŸ‡§13.14 =PB
ðŸ¥‰Wilhem BELOCIANðŸ‡«ðŸ‡·13.18 â€»PB
â‘£Grant HOLLOWAYðŸ‡ºðŸ‡¸13.19 pic.twitter.com/AZ4aonvHpp
— ã® (@slowhurdler) August 15, 2020
Ortega won in a world lead 13.11. Pozzi equalled his 2017 PR of 13.14 for second place. Wilhem Belocian, finishing one place behind Pozzi, for the second time in a week was third in 13.18, also a PR, with world champion Holloway fourth in 13.19.
Ortega said afterwards: “Amazing competition! I was trying to do all the best. It was a difficult season trying to train and I’m happy to start my season with a world lead”
Holloway said “13.19 is a good season best and with everything going on, I’ll take it. It is what 2020 is – a lot of chaos”.
Asking if Karsten Warholm won, is like asking if the Pope is a catholic. Warholm ran a world lead 47.02 almost 2 seconds ahead of second place Yasmani Copello of Turkey.
What he has competed already this season in one of the virtual games, this was his first real race, of which he said: “This was a very, very good season opener. I felt very strong, things I’ve been working on actually work. I had a very good finish today and I’m really happy. It’s great seeing some audience, hearing the sound of the audience, and having some competitors by my side felt great.
“I did 13 strides all the way but it’s not really about the strides, it’s about how to keep the pace going and I felt like I did this so I’m very happy about how I completed the race today and I felt it was a great start”.
Warholm set a new meeting record. The previous record of 47.60 by Kevin Young had stood for 28 years! When one watch is quality hurdling like this, the frustration is that it may be the only time we see a race of this quality all year.
— karsten warholm (@kwarholm) August 13, 2020