USA’s world championships silver medalist Sydney McLaughlin posted a world-leading time of 52.83 seconds to win the women’s 400m hurdles at the Music City Track Carnival American Track League meeting at Montgomery Bell Academy in Nashville, TN, on Sunday, June 6. Photos are below.
McLaughlin, who opted to concentrate on the shorter distances to open the 2021 season, made an impressive debut in her specialty as she improved the previous world lead of 53.12s, set by her countrywoman Shamier Little at the Duval Challenge American League meeting in Jacksonville, FL, on May 31.
Running her first 400m hurdles since 2019, McLaughlin noted that the objective on Sunday was just to go out and see where she is after spending some time working on several different things in training.
She said the aim was to “get the rust off” ahead of the trials. She added: “There are things we need to work on, but it is good to be back.
“We’ve done a couple of [short hurdle races] and one 400m, but just getting the two combined, it’s good to be back.”
McLaughlin ran six 100m hurdles races in the early stages of the outdoor season and also competed in a 60m hurdles race during the winter. She said those early outings will help her to run better 400m hurdles as the season progresses.
“It’s good to feel that tempo, [and] the speed of short hurdles. I think it’s really helping, [and] once you really open it up, it feels a lot easier” to run the longer hurdles event.
Leah Nugent of Jamaica also had a solid performance after finishing second to the American in a season-best time of 55.34, improving her previous 2021 best of 56.12.
Canada’s Sage Watson followed home third in 56.04, while Sparkle McKnight of Trinidad and Tobago just a step behind in fourth place with a season’s best 56.06.