By: Isiaq N. Oluwamayowa
The 2023 World Athletics Championships in Budapest officially begins today, Let’s take a trip down memory lane and revisit the thrilling moments from the previous edition in Oregon. From record-breaking performances to awe-inspiring athletic displays, the 2022 World Championships left us with countless unforgettable memories. Here are some of my favourite moments from Oregon 2022, listed in no particular order:
1. The Male American Sweep in the 100m
The 100-metre race witnessed an incredible feat as American athletes claimed the top three positions. Fred Kerley, Marvin Bracy, and Trayvon Bromell secured gold, silver, and bronze respectively, marking the first time since 1991 that the Americans achieved an all-American victory. This triumph on home soil made it even more memorable, especially considering Kerley’s silver medal in the previous Olympics in Tokyo.
2. The Female Jamaican Sweep in the 100m
It was almost as if we could predict the top three finishers before the finals. The three Jamaican women who dominated the Tokyo 2020 Olympics continued their dominance in the World Championships. Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce, Shericka Jackson, and Elaine Thompson-Herah claimed the first, second, and third places respectively. Fraser-Pryce’s outstanding performance secured her fifth World title in this event. She is such an icon in the sport.
3. Sydney McLaughlin’s Record-Smashing Run
Sydney McLaughlin’s effortless record-breaking moment was nothing short of breathtaking. She shattered the world record for the 400m hurdles, which she had previously set earlier in the year. To break a world record and then break your own record again in a matter of months is an extraordinary accomplishment. McLaughlin made the 400m hurdles look like a stroll in the park with her exceptional performance.
4. Tobi Amusan’s Record-Breaking Feats in the 100m Hurdles
This moment was particularly exciting as it marked Nigeria’s first-ever World title in athletics. Amusan broke the world record for the 100m hurdles in the semi-finals with a time of 12.12 seconds and improved her record again in the final with a wind-assisted 12.06 seconds all on the same day. Although only the record from the semi-finals was ratified due to higher wind speed in the final, Amusan’s achievements were still remarkable.
5. Shericka Jackson’s Breakthrough in the 200m
Shericka Jackson’s performance in the 200m race was a breakthrough moment for her. She set the second-fastest time in history, trailing only Florence Griffith-Joyner, and officially became the fastest woman alive. After missing out on the 200m finals in the last Olympics in Tokyo, Jackson’s World title provided the redemption she needed to overcome her disappointment.
6. Allyson Felix’s Farewell Race
After an illustrious 20-year career on the track, Allyson Felix announced her retirement. She bid farewell with a beautiful performance at the 4x400m mixed relay World Championships, adding a bronze to her already impressive medal collection. Felix’s retirement marked the end of an era, and she retained her title as the most decorated American Track and Field athlete.
7. Mondo Duplantis’ Pole Vault World Record
Duplantis, who had already won a gold medal at the Tokyo Olympics, finally clinched a World title and made history by breaking his world record. His exceptional skills in pole vaulting were on full display as he soared to new heights, setting a new world record in the process. It was another thrilling moment of an athlete surpassing their previous world record.
8. Yulimar Rojas’ Triple Jump Triumph
Yulimar Rojas secured her third consecutive world title in the women’s triple jump, leaping to a distance of 15.47m. Despite her incredible feat, the current Olympic champion’s record remained unbroken, adding to the excitement and anticipation for future competitions.
9. Noah Lyles’ American Record and Male American Sweep in the 200m
Determined to claim the gold after winning bronze in the previous Olympics, Noah Lyles broke the American record set by Michael Johnson in 1996. Although he fell short of breaking the world record, Lyles’ achievement was inspiring. Kenny Bednarek secured the silver medal, while Erriyon Knighton earned the bronze, resulting in a clean sweep for American athletes in both the 100m and 200m male races.
10. Jakob Ingebrigtsen’s Redemption in the 5000m
As the reigning Olympic champion in the 1500m, Jakob Ingebrigtsen was disappointed with his silver medal finish. However, he redeemed himself by winning the gold in the 5000m race, showcasing his exceptional talent and resilience.
The 2022 World Athletics Championships in Oregon undoubtedly left an indelible mark on my memory and the memories of fans worldwide. As we have been eagerly anticipating the 2023 edition in Budapest, I can only imagine the jaw-dropping moments and record-breaking performances that lie ahead. The world of athletics never fails to deliver excitement and inspiration that will leave us eagerly waiting for the next chapter in this remarkable journey.