The temperature was high in the afternoon Tokyo Olympics Hurdles final. But Norwegian Karsten Warholm and the rest of the field at the race were supposed to put up a fantastic show. The show ended up being historic, let alone fantastic.
Karsten Warholm Beats Himself
Apart from the Olympics gold medal, Karsten Warholm also got a historic time, possibly cementing himself as one of the best in the event’s history. After the race was run, Warholm admitted that he had never imagined his 45.94 seconds time was humanely possible.
But there is more to the drama. Silver medallist Rai Benjamin’s time was also thirty seconds quicker than the record in the event: 46.17 seconds. But that still was not enough! Who would have thought that even his tremendous effort would be bested? Bronze medallist Brazilian Alison dos Santos’ 46.72 seconds time also would have been enough for a record, had it happened last month.
The second last finisher Estonia’s Rasmus Magi was quite a ways back. But he was among the six to record a national, continental, or world best time. Benjamin said that it will take some time to accept.
Karsten Warholm’s latest record is 0.76 seconds quicker than his old world record. The old was set by him only a month ago. To put the jump in perspective, the last time such a jump happened was after a span of 48 years. It was in the 400m dash event. The gap was between 1968’s Butch Reynolds and 2016’s Wayde van Niekerk. The 2016 world record by Niekerk is 43.03 seconds. After adding 10 hurdles, Karsten Warholm took only 2.91 seconds more.
Warholm and Benjamin were setting and breaking world records all through the previous month. Both athletes think of the rivalry as the factor that pushed them so far.