In 2017, a spectacular 120 world records were broken across track and field at events around the globe. But which world records could fall this year? Here are 10 to watch out for:
1. Men’s 100m T36 (11.90)
China’s Yang Yifei came within 0.03 seconds of the current world record mark when he clocked 11.93 to take gold at London 2017 – knocking more than 0.2 seconds off his previous personal best. The 26-year-old only made his international debut in 2015 and if he continues in that vein the record set by Russia’s Evgenii Shvetsov in 2013 could go soon.
2. Men’s 100m T47 (10.53)
Petrucio Ferreira has lowered the 100m T46/47 world record three times in the last two years, most recently clocking 10.53 at the London 2017 World Championships. At just 21-years-old the Brazilian has time on his hands to get even faster. Ireland’s Jason Smyth is currently the fastest Paralympian on the planet with a time of 10.46 – can Ferreira beat that?
3. Men’s 800m T13 (1:50.70)
Algerian twins Abdellatif and Fouad Baka have fast become the face of visually impaired middle-distance running, winning gold in the 1,500m and 800m T13 respectively at London 2017. Abdellatif broke the 1,500m T13 record at Rio 2016; his 800m world record has stood since May 2015. Don’t be surprised if that record is broken – the question is, by which brother?
4. Men’s 1500m T53/54 (2:51.84)
When Canadian Brent Lakatos broke the 1,500m T53/54 world record in Nottwil, Switzerland, last year, Swiss racer Marcel Hug was bitterly disappointed. Hug had lined up in an earlier heat and so was unable to challenge; the 32-year-old will surely be determined to reclaim the record sooner rather than later.
5. Men’s shot put F36 (15.34m)
With the European Championships taking place in Berlin, Germany this year, one man out to impress the local crowds will be shot put F36 world champion Sebastian Dietz. The German topped the world rankings last year after throwing 15.28m at the World Championships – only six centimetres off the world record. A home Championships could inspire him to throw even further.
6. Men’s high jump T13 (2.17m)
The USA’s Isaac Jean-Paul burst on to the global stage at London 2017 when he broke the world record no fewer than three times on his way to high jump T13 gold. He bowed out after failing to clear 2.20m, but don’t bet against him improving on his current best sometime soon.
7. Women’s shot put F57 (11.13m)
It was Algerian Nassima Saifi who topped the women’s shot put F57 rankings in 2017 – her best distance of the year, a throw of 11.08m, came in March in the UAE. That mark was just 5cm off the world record set by Angeles Ortiz Hernandez at the 2015 World Championships. Saifi went on to claim her first shot put world title at London 2017 in a highly competitive field; Hernandez’s mark could be under threat.
8. Women’s 100m T13 (11.79)
Ukrainian Leilia Adzhametova has become the new face of the women’s T13 sprints – she won a hat trick of golds at London 2017 to add to her Paralympic title from Rio 2016. The 23-year-old lowered the world record twice on her way to gold in Brazil, although both then and in London she was not the quickest out of the blocks. With an even faster start she is capable of lowering the record further.
9. Women’s javelin F46 (43.02m)
Great Britain’s Hollie Arnold and New Zealander Holly Robinson are both 23-years-old and finished first and second respectively at both Rio 2016 and London 2017. Arnold set her first world record of 43.01m at the Rio Games; she added 1cm to take the world title last year. With Robinson chasing her tail – her personal best is 42.68m – their rivalry will no doubt inspire each other to even greater lengths. They will go head-to-head at the Commonwealth Games in April.
10. Women’s discus F38 (32.14m)
Ireland’s Noelle Lenihan was only 15-years-old when she broke her first world record at the Doha 2015 World Championships, throwing 31.64m. She extended that mark to 32.14m at the Grosseto 2016 European Championships, and came within 2cm of her new best when she clinched silver behind China’s F37 thrower Mi Na at London 2017. With further experience under her belt and a European Championships to look forward to, Lenihan could well impress again.