Noah Lyles won an extremely quick men’s 200m race at the London Athletics Meet 2023 Diamond League event in the British capital on Sunday (23 July).
The American found himself pushed hard by both Britain’s national sprint double champion Zharnell Hughes and Botswana’s sprint sensation Letsile Tebogo around the bend, before putting some distance between himself and his rivals.
Tebogo kicked hard to give Lyles a scare, but the world champion came home first in 19.47, improving his own 2023 world-leading time by two-tenths of a second.
Tebogo’s 19.50 was a new African record, eclipsing Frankie Fredericks’ 19.68 from the Atlanta 1996 Olympic final, and moved him up from tied-54th to the sixth on the all-time 200m list.
Hughes gave the home crowd plenty to cheer as his 19.73 was two-tenths inside John Regis’ 30-year-old British record, barely a month after he had broken Linford Christie’s 100m marks.
“I said it was going to be fast. I told Zharnel he could easily break that British record and he smashed it,” Lyles told the BBC after his race. “The 200 will always be mine. She’s my wife. Fourth 200 of the year. I’m not letting go of her. She’s mine.”
The London Athletics Meet was the tune-up for the athletes before they head off to next month’s World Athletics Championships in Budapest.