Budapest 23 – Day 1: Morning Session

In the opening session of day 1 we take a look at some of the early heats. Will they go to form?

Welcome to the World Championships!

Budapest opened its doors to the world this morning on day 1 of the 2023 World Championships. Over the next week, we will see  the world’s best athletes going for gold. One major change for this year is the removal of the little q time qualifiers meaning each qualifying race for places will be more important. Places count over time in this championship which will hopefully lead to more exciting races in the middle distance events.


The first medal of the tournament was won by Spain in the 20km race walk. Álvaro Martin of Spain set a World Leading time of 1:17.32 with Perseus Karlström of Sweden taking silver (1:17.39) and Caio Bonfirm of Brazil claiming the bronze in 1:17.47. Both Martin and Bonfirm set new National Records with their results.

Men’s 3000m Steeplechase Heats

The men’s 3000m steeplechase heats threw up no surprises with Wale, El Bakkali and Girma qualifying with ease on day 1. New Zealand’s Geordie Beamish also set out his stall as a possible dark horse for a medal with his qualification in his first season as a specialist steeplechaser.


Abraham Kibiwot

Ryoma Aoki

Leonard Chemutai

George Beamish

Lamecha Girma

Ryuji Miura

Daniel Arce

Soufiane El Bakkali

Leonard Kipkemoi Bett

Kenneth Rooks

Jean-Simon Desgagnes

Simon Kiprop Koech

Simon Sundstrom

Mohammed Amin Jhinaoui

Getnet Wale

Women’s 1500m 

Heat 1

In the women’s 1500m heats, the first real test of the new ruleset on day 1 saw the athletes really racing for the top 6 places. In the first heat, Hassan, as is tradition, started at the back but had plenty in the tank to kick for first. She is joined in the semi finals by Laura Muir, Nikki Hiltz, Edinah Jebitok and Nozomi Tanaka.

Heat 2

As we moved into the second heat, Faith Kipyegon, the current world record holder and probably the most in form athlete this year, cruised to the front to keep the heat honest. The final lap saw the pace raise as everyone battled for the Q. Kipyegon held the win with a fast finishing Welteji on her heels. Sarah Healy, Gaia Sabbatini, Melissa Courtney Bryant and Spain’s Esther Guerrero made up the rest of the advancing athletes from day 1.

Metaspeed LD Upper
Metaspeed LD outsole

Heat 3

Next on day 1, the third heat saw an exciting finish with a group of 8 athletes breaking away from the field and fighting for the 6 places. Nelly Chepchirchir triumphed for Kenya with Sinclair Johnson setting a season’s best in second. In third, we had Brike Haylom. Katie Snowdon came in for fourth and Marta Perez set a season’s best in 5 with 4:01.41. The final qualifier for the semis was Australian Linden Hall.

Heat 4

In the final heat of day 1, Hirut Meshesha took the win in the slowest heat of the morning. Jessica Hull crossed in second. Ciara McGeean took the bronze. Fourth and fifth places were filled by Cory McGee and Adelle Tracy (now of Jamaica). The final qualifier for the semi final was Italy’s Ludovica Cavalli.

Sifan Hassan

Whether it is breaking world records on the track or winning the London Marathon in unique style, Sifan Hassan creates fireworks when she runs. During the championships, Hassan will be going for triple gold. She will have a busy schedule if everything goes her way.


She will be racing on each of the first 4 days of the championships in the 1500, 10000 and 5000m. If those races go as planned, she will then have a couple of days of rest before her last race on the evening of the 26th.


The championships will see her going head to head with Faith Kipyegon who has been the athlete of the year in 2023 by some distance. Who will come out on top in this clash of generational talents?


Oh, and if that schedule isn’t hectic enough for an athlete, Hassan will also toe the line at the Chicago marathon just 42 days later. There, we will see if she can make it 2 wins from 2 starts in her marathon career.

Girma Vs El Bakkali 

The men’s steeplechase world record stood for nearly 20 years before it was beaten by Lamecha Girma in an amazing night of athletics at the Diamond League in Paris. On that record breaking night, he lowered the mark by a second and a half.  He will be lining up against Sofiane El Bakkali at Budapest 23. El Bakkali has been pushing for the record himself with a string of wins which have seen him become the reigning world and Olympic Champion. With these two on the line, the gold medal could also come with another world record in what is usually track’s most chaotic event.

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Metaspeed LD Conclusion

The Women’s 100m

Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce has been dominating the field with the rest of the Jamaican team pushing alongside her for the past several years. But at the age of 36, nothing can last forever. There are many young, hungry sprinters nipping at her heels. Her countrywoman Shericka Jackson set the world lead earlier in the year. Sha’carri Richardson gave a statement of intent at the USATF trials in Eugene. Marie-Josee Ta Lou is coming into Budapest with a string of amazing form. Will the old guard remain in charge or will the young guns usurp the hierarchy? Whatever happens, don’t blink or you’ll miss it!

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44 years old

173cm (5’8″) – 66kg (145lbs)

Forefoot striker – (Very) high cadence runner


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