Your writer has been in Doha for 36 hours. 23 hours worth of flying, Chicago to Istanbul, then Istanbul to Doha. Staying in Dusit Hotel, working in Pullman, with interviews and pressers, we move to the stadium tomorrow, and then, at 5.50 am on Saturday, return to Wisconsin!
DOHA DL PREVIEW
DOHA (QAT): The Wanda Diamond League starts this Friday; the world’s best athletes will descend on Doha for the opening leg of athletics’ premier one-day meeting series as they bid to get early points on the board in the race to qualify for the series final in September.
100m – All eight athletes have sub-11 PBs. World 200m champion Shericka Jackson is the fastest this season with 10.82, although Sha’Carri Richardson has been credited with a wind-aided 10.57.
400m – Olympic and World silver medallist Marileidy Paulino haS the fastest SB (50.33) and PB (48.99) in the line-up. Could she challenge Allyson Felix’s long-standing meeting record of 49.83?
1500m – The last event of the evening concludes with Faith Kipyegon making her season’s debut against a strong Ethiopian contingent including Diribe Welteji and Freweyni Hailu. Eight of the entrants have broken the 4:00 barrier.
3000m steeplechase – Olympic champion Peruth Chemutai and WR holder Beatrice Chepkoech are among the entrants, along with young Kenyans Jackline Chepkoech and Faith Cherotich, the Commonwealth and World U20 champions, respectively.
100m hurdles – Olympic champion Jasmine Camacho-Quinn races internationally for the first time in 2023 after opening her season with a super-fast wind-aided 12.29. How will Reetta Hurske fare after a huge indoor season?
Pole vault – Olympic and world champion Katie Moon, world indoor champion Sandi Morris and European champion Wilma Murto are three of the standout entrants.
Dina Asher-Smith, photo by Getty Images for British Athletics
200m – All eight entrants have PBs of 20.00 or faster. The field includes World 100m and 400m champions Fred Kerley and Mike Norman and reigning Olympic champion Andre de Grasse. Could the meeting record of 19.83 fall?
800m – The line-up features Kenyans Noah Kibet and Wycliffe Kinyamal, along with 2016 Olympic medallist Clayton Murphy who is on the comeback trail.
3000m – A loaded field includes Olympic champions Soufiane El Bakkali and Selemon Barega as well as Lamecha Girma, who broke the world indoor 3000m record in Lievin.
Soufianne El Bakkali en route to gold in the World Champs! World Athletics Championships
Eugene, Oregon, USA
steeplechase, men, photo by Kevin Morris
400m hurdles – Rai Benjamin is the big favorite, having already clocked 47.74 this season and with many of his top rivals absent.
High jump – Will Mutaz Essa Barshim win at home again? His biggest rival is likely to be Sanghyoek Woo from Korea.
Triple jump – Pedro Pichardo makes his outdoor season’s debut after defending his European indoor title. The line-up also includes Christian Taylor, who is returning to form, and Italy’s Emmanuel Ihemeje, who has jumped 17.29m this season.
Discus – World champion Kristjan Ceh faces Swedes Daniel Stahl and Simon Pettersson, both of whom are making their season’s debuts.
Javelin – Loaded line-up includes Olympic champion Neeraj Chopra, world champion Anderson Peters and current world leader Jakub Vadlejch who has already thrown 88.38m this year.
Fred Kerley signed contract with ASICS, photo by ASICs