Sydney McLaughlin breaks Dalilah Muhammed's world record, By Sam Fariss / SOJC Track Bureau for RunBlogRun

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In 1995, I was at my first World Championships. I recall watching Kim Batten and Tonja Buford Bailey go 1,2 in the women's 400m hurdles, breaking the WR and just blowing people's minds.

In 2021, I watched Sydney McLaughlin demolish the world record of Dalilah Muhammed, with her 51.90 WR and then Dalilah Muhammed in second in 52.40 (remember, Dalilah set WRs in 2019 with 52.20 and 52.16).

McLaughlin_Sydney-Q1-OlyTrials21w.jpgSydney McLaughlin, 400m hurdles, photo by Kevin Morris / Kevmofoto

The thing is this, we have a plethora of fine women athletes in the 400m hurdles. Medals can come from virtually anyone who makes the US team!

Muhammad_Delilah-Q-OlyTrials21w.jpgDalilah Muhammed, 400m hurdles, photo by Kevin Morris / Kevmofoto

This piece was written by Sam Fariss, who writes for SOJC. SOJC is managed by Lori Shontz, a Journalism professor at the University of Oregon.

All SOJC pieces are edited by Lori Shontz and Larry Eder

Sydney McLaughlin breaks Dalilah Muhammed's world record

By Sam Fariss

SOJC Track Bureau for RunBlogRun

EUGENE, Ore. - Sydney McLaughlin flew past the world record for the women's 400-meter hurdles Sunday night at the Olympic Trials with the previous record holder just steps behind her.

McLaughlin won the Olympic Trials in 51.90, significantly under the previous record of 52.16, set two years ago at the world championships by Dalilah Muhammed.

Muhammed finished second in 52.42, and Anna Cockrell, reigning NCAA champion in the event, rounded out the Olympic team by finishing third in a personal best of 53.70 seconds.

"I knew it would be fast," McLaughlin said. "Great competition as always. We've been training for this. We put it together today."

Muhammed and McLaughlin entered the weekend as favorites in the race and have been competing alongside each other for a few years now, and Muhammed said it came as no surprise that McLaughlin broke her world record.

"She looked so good in the rounds. Absolutely saw it coming," Muhammed said.

McLaughlin touched on how competitive the field is in the U.S. this year and how having competition such as Muhammed and Cockrell has driven her to be better.

"It helps to have such an amazing camp of women in the U.S. to get those times," McLaughlin said. "With my training, we were able to put one together."

Both McLaughlin and Cockrell are relatively young Olympians, especially to qualify for a hurdling event, which Cockrell said competitors generally reach their prime in their mid-20s. Cockrell, a recent graduate from the University of Southern California, is 23 years old and McLaughlin, who turned pro after her freshman year at the University of Kentucky, is 21.

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