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Wayde van Niekerk runs 44.08 secs for impressive win at Silesia Wanda Diamond League

Wayde van Niekerk wins at 2023 Racers Grand Prix

CHORZÓW, Poland (July 16) — Wayde van Niekerk, the world record holder, two-time world champion, and Rio 2016 Olympic champion, delivered another exceptional performance this season in the men’s 400m at the 2023 Silesia Wanda Diamond League in Poland on Sunday (16), clocking 44.08 seconds today at the Silesian Stadium.

Van Niekerk, who has been grappling with injury problems for years, proved that he is back in form by clinching victory today with a season-best time and meeting record time that bettered the previous meeting mark of 44.11 seconds, set by USA’s Michael Norman in 2022.

Read more: Fred Kerley in 100m, Natalia Kaczmarek runs 49.48 secs at Silesia Diamond League

This performance today from Van Niekerk solidifies his position as the favorite to win the gold medal at the 2023 World Athletics Championships in Budapest next month.

Meanwhile, Bayapo Ndori of Botswana finished second today in Silesia, with a personal best time of 44.61 seconds, while world 400m hurdles champion Alison dos Santos of Brazil confirmed his return from injury with a third-place with an impressive time of 44.73 seconds.

Dos Santos’ performance was particularly impressive, considering it was his first race back from surgery.

“It feels good to be back! After my injury, I had a conversation with my coach, and we knew it would be tough, but I want to come back,” Dos Santos said.

“The flat race was just for fun, but I will be racing the hurdles in Monaco, and that is my first goal now. In Budapest, I want to be the best!

However, the race was not without its disappointments. Muzala Samukonga, the world leader from Zambia, who has clocked 43.91 secs this year and was hoping to challenge for the win today, pulled up after the first 120 meters, marking a premature end to his race.

Van Niekerk held the advantage entering the home straight, but the South African shifted gears as he swept off the corner and visibly picked up speed down the final stretch. This tactic of kicking into speed after the 120 has been a new strategy for him this season, and it certainly seems to be working.

With such a strong comeback, van Niekerk has set the stage for an exciting World Athletics Championships next month. His performance today is a testament to his resilience to defy setbacks, and his fans around the world will be eagerly waiting to see him in action in Budapest.

Silesia Wanda Diamond League men’s 400m results:

  1. Wayde van Niekerk (RSA) – 44.08 (Season Best)
  2. Bayapo Ndori (BOT) – 44.61 (Personal Best)
  3. Alison dos Santos (BRA) – 44.73 (Season Best)
  4. Zakithi Nene (RSA) – 44.74 (Personal Best)
  5. Ryan Willie (USA) – 44.77
  6. Bryce Deadmon (USA) – 44.81
  7. Vernon Norwood (USA) – 44.88
  8. Karol Zalewski (POL) – 45.87
  9. Muzala Samukonga (ZAM) – Did Not Finish

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Gary Smith

Gary Smith

Gary Smith is one of the leading writers for World-Track.org. He has over 20 years of running experience, as well as 12 years of coaching while covering several events, from the international to college level. Smith, who has covered events for publications such as Caribbean Net News, European Athletics, Cayman Net News, AFP, and Caribbean Media Corporation (CMC), is also a frequent contributor of SportingAlert.com and TrackAlerts.com. Smith holds a degree in Communication and Journalism. Twitter | LinkedIn | News Break WriterView Author posts