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Weekend recap: 2021 Diamond League opens in Gateshead, Canadians grab wins in Boston

The Diamond League season is officially underway, and the World Athletics Continental Tour continued with the Boost Boston Games

The 2021 Diamond League season kicked off on Sunday with a meet in Gateshead, U.K., and Canadians Aaron BrownAndre De Grasse and Matt Hughes raced. Also on Sunday was another stop on the World Continental Tour, this time with a gold-level “street meet” (the races were held on a track in the middle of a city street) at the Boost Boston Games. There, Canada’s Marco Arop and Jerome Blake took a pair of wins. For those results and more, here’s yet another edition of the weekend recap.

Gateshead Diamond League

In the men’s 200m in Gateshead, Brown and De Grasse went head to head. The pair finished second and third behind American Kenneth Bednarek, who took the win in 20.33 seconds. Brown crossed the line next, stopping the clock in 20.79, and De Grasse was just behind him with a season best of 20.85. This was the second podium performance within a week for both Brown and De Grasse, both of whom competed at the Ostrava Golden Spike meet in the Czech Republic on Wednesday. Bednarek also raced in Ostrava, where he won the 200m. 

In the men’s 1,500m, Norway’s Jakob Ingebrigtsen faced off against Australians Ollie Hoare and Stewart McSweyn. It was a tight race, but the young Norwegian got the better of his competitors, powering across the line for a 3:36.27 win. This is a season best for Ingebrigtsen, whose last race before Gateshead came at the European Indoor Championships, where he won gold in the 1,500m and 3,000m. Second place went to Hoare in 3:36.58 and McSweyn crossed the line in 3:37.32 for third.

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Hughes raced the men’s 3,000m steeplechase, and he finished in 11th place in 8:38.11. American Hillary Bor took the win in 8:30.20. The women’s 100m event saw a showdown between Great Britain’s Dina Asher-Smith, Sha’Carri Richardson of the U.S. and Jamaica’s Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce.

Fraser-Pryce and Asher-Smith know one another well, as they faced off in the 100m at the 2019 world championships. On that occasion, Fraser-Pryce took the win, while Asher-Smith won silver, but that was not the case on Sunday. This time, Asher-Smith won in 11.35. Richardson finished in second in 11.44 and Marie-Josée Ta Lou of the Ivory Coast placed third in 11.48. Fraser-Pryce crossed the line in fourth in 11.51. 

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Next up on the Diamond League schedule is a meet in Doha, Qatar, on Friday. For full results from the Gateshead Diamond League, click here

Boost Boston Games

Arop won the men’s 600m in Boston in 1:15 (the exact time was not listed on the results page). Arop doesn’t have an outdoor 600m listed on his World Athletics profile, but his indoor PB is 1:21.53. Of course, there’s a big difference between running three laps of an indoor track and 600m on a straightaway outdoors (which was the case in Boston), but his result is still quite impressive. 

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Blake won the men’s 200m with a huge PB of 19.89 seconds. Again, this was run on a 200m straight instead of a regular oval track, but it’s his first time breaking 20 seconds in the event, so it’s still certainly a noteworthy performance. According to the Boost Boston Games Twitter page, Blake’s result moved him to fourth on the all-time 200m straight list. 

In the women’s mile, American Nikki Hiltz took the win in a world-leading time and PB of 4:31. Prior to Sunday’s race, Hiltz’s mile PB sat at 4:32.29. The men’s 100m saw 200m specialist Noah Lyles run to a second-place result in 10.10 seconds, finishing behind compatriot Isiah Young, who won in 9.94. Finally, American Grant Holloway won the 110m hurdles (the event in which he won gold at the 2019 world championships) in 13.20 seconds. 

For full results from Boston, click here.

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