Karsten Warholm, the Olympic champion and world-record holder in the 400m hurdles, pulled up after the first hurdle of his first race since September with what he believes is a hamstring cramp.
At a Diamond League meet in Rabat, Morocco on Sunday, Warholm slightly clipped the first hurdle with his right trail leg. He then took several more steps before coming to a stop while grabbing at the back of his right thigh.
By the time the rest of the field finished, Warholm was rubbing what appeared to be a bag of ice on the area while walking in the area where he stopped.
“It’s probably a cramp in my hamstring,” he said. “Hopefully, I’ll come back stronger. I just need to fix this, see what’s going on.”
American Khallifah Rosser went on to win in 48.25 seconds.
Warholm, who owns the world record of 45.94 seconds, had an 18-meet 400m hurdles win streak snapped dating to the start of 2019, according to Tilastopaja.org. Olympic bronze medalist Alison dos Santos of Brazil has the world’s top time this year of 47.23.
The first round of the world championships men’s 400m hurdles is in 41 days in Eugene, Oregon.
Full Rabat results are here. The Diamond League moves to Rome for a meet on Thursday.
Also Sunday, Sydney McLaughlin ran her first 400m hurdles race since winning the Olympics in world-record time (51.46). She clocked 51.61 at an American Track League meet in Nashville, which would be the third-fastest time in history, but it may not go down as a legal time due to the spacing of two of the hurdles.
Allyson Felix ran a 400m in Poland in 50.71 seconds, a time that would have been enough to make the Olympic team last year for relays. Felix has said this will be her final season and reportedly said she plans to race at the USATF Outdoor Championships in two weeks, when at least six and likely the top eight in the 400m will make the team for worlds when including relays.
Also in Rabat, Olympic champion Elaine Thompson-Herah won the 100m in 10.83 seconds, eight days after running 10.79 to win the Pre Classic. Thompson-Herah is undefeated this outdoor season, but has yet to face countrywoman Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce, who has the top time in 2022 of 10.67.
Emmanuel Wanyonyi, a 17-year-old Kenyan, took the men’s 800m over a field that included Olympic gold and silver medalists Emmanuel Korir and Ferguson Rotich, also of Kenya. Wanyonyi clocked 1:45.47.
Tokyo gold medalist Soufiane El Bakkali of Morocco won the closing men’s 3000m steeplechase in 7:58.28, the world’s best time in four years.
American Sandi Morris won a women’s pole vault with a 4.65-meter clearance, topping a field that included the last two Olympic champions American Katie Nageotte and Greek Katerina Stefanidi. Australian Nina Kennedy also cleared 4.65 but didn’t attempt another height.
Slovenia’s Kristjan Ceh, who was fifth in Tokyo, won the men’s discus with a 69.68-meter throw, beating all three Olympic medalists for the second consecutive Diamond League event.
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