10, Jun 2023
Sydney McLaughlin-Levrone finishes in second place in the first 400m flat race in 5 years

Sydney McLaughlin-Levrone has put the women’s 400m field on alert: she’s here to challenge the best.

On Friday evening (9 June) at the Paris DiamondLeague athletics meet, the American 400m hurdles world record holder sent a loud message, starting fast out of the blocks in her first flat lap race in nearly five years.

However, the Dominican Republic’s Marileidy Paulinothe world and Olympic silver medallist, caught McLaughlin-Levrone down the final bend before pulling ahead on the straight to take victory in a meeting record 49.12.

“I felt great during the race. I had a kind of bad start, but I was able to get back into the race in the second half and especially at the end,” Paulino said after the race.

That said, McLaughlin-Levrone – who has made clear her aim to succeed over the flat to go with her remarkable performances over the 400m hurdles – made her mark, recording 49.71 seconds in what was her outdoor season debut, having not raced since a 60m indoor in Boston in February,

Her coach, the legendary Bob Kersee, has suggested McLaughlin-Levrone has the capability to threaten the world record (47.60) on the flat.

Given her remarkable performances over hurdles, and this tantalising showing today – even if it did not end in victory – few would doubt that she could certainly come close.

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