Australian middle distance star Joseph Deng has heralded himself as a true medal threat for the Paris Olympics by breaking the Australian 800m record set by superstar Peter Bol.
Commonwealth Games gold medal winner Bol’s training partner pulled off a runaway victory of 1:43.99 in Lyon, France, which is officially one of the fastest times in the world this year.
The race puts him and Australia right in the frame of a gold medal in the 800m at the upcoming athletics world titles starting on August 19.
Australia now also have a genuine chance to win both gold and silver in the harrowing two-loop 800m race with Bol and Deng to boost the global field.
Joe Deng has had some terrible injuries in recent seasons, but in France he broke the Australian 800m record and is now looking to win gold for Australia at the next world titles.
Deng’s training partner Peter Bol, the former Australian 800m record holder and current Commonwealth Games silver medalist, is also back in PB form and heads to Budapest for the World Championships.
Kenyan-born Australian Deng, who has been in Australia since 2004, books his best performances in Europe, as seen here winning in England.
Deng exploded to the front early in France over 800m a few days ago and went on to destroy a world-class field and become the first Australian in history to run the 800m under 1:44.
He is now ranked No. 2 in the world and is up against his highly regarded superstar training partner Bol, who set his personal best (PB) in France that day, but in the 1500m.
Bol’s 1500m (3:34.52) gives Australia an undeniable and unique opportunity to take gold and silver at the upcoming World Track and Field Championships in Budapest which begins on August 19.
Australians prepare for the Paris Olympics
800m champion Peter Bol is ready for Paris
Deng’s unprecedented performance in the 800m by an Australian comes at the same time other Australian track and field stars have also done amazing things like
- Peter Bol (pictured) in top form with a 1500m PB
- Olli Hoare, Commonwealth Games gold medalist, with an Australian record of 1500 m
- Teen sensation Cam Myers becomes fastest 17-year-old over 1500m in the world
- Jessica Hull breaking the Australian 1500m and 3000m records.
- Catriona Bisset among the eight best in the world in 800m
All of them are in top form and competing in the prestigious invitation-only Diamond League across Europe.
The duo is ranked in the top five globally in the 800m.
Deng was born in a Kenyan refugee camp in 1998 after his mother fled Sudan’s brutal civil war.
The family then decided to come live in Australia, arriving in Queensland in 2004, and Deng soon showed great promise as an athlete.
His manager, James Templeton, was standing at the 100m mark with Peter Bol when Deng returned home on his record-breaking French run.
“We were jumping up and down for him because Joe has been injured for so long,” Templeton said.
“When he won Pete was beside himself with joy for his partner, then when the time came, proving that Joe had broken his record, I swear Pete jumped even higher.”
An hour into that race, Bol lined up in the 1500m and ran an astonishing time, narrowly missing out on qualifying for the Australian World Championships in the 1500m.
The 1500m is not her favorite race, but her performance was impressive. Just like the unknown teenager who followed him half a second behind him.
That was Australian Cameron Myers, who has the tongues of the world’s leading athletic authorities. No one his age can run 1500m as fast as the young teenager from Canberra.
And only the legendary Jakob Ingebrigtsen when he was 17, five years ago, has run faster.
Myers ran 3:35.02 in France. He broke all Australian national records up to and including the 1500m under 20 record.
next monday [Australian time] in Poland he could well join Olli Hoare and Stewy McSweyn on the Australian team for the 1500m if things go well for him.
Myers will compete against the colossus, the world’s largest and most dominant athlete in Norway’s Ingebrigtsen over 1500m.
The Norwegian asked McSweyn if he would pace the field for the first 1000m as he attempts to break the world record over 1500m. Myers will be on the field.
Ingebrigtsen, 22, won the gold medal in the 1500 meters at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games, setting an Olympic and European record.
At the 2022 World Championships in Athletics, Ingebrigtsen took silver in the 1500 meters and gold in the 5000 meters.
Jakob Ingebrigtsen is an Olympic gold medalist, he was the fastest teenage 1500m runner in racing history to Australian Cam Myers who is the second fastest teenage 1500m on Monday in Poland.
Experts from around the world rate Australian 17-year-old Cameron Myers as the best rising teenage talent alive and competes against Ingebrigtsen on July 17
He is a four-time European champion, winning the 1500/5000 double in 2018 and 2022.
Myers can’t boast that record yet, but he’s a prodigious talent who has world-class natural speed, but more than that, he’s fearless.
McSweyn will lead, the great Norwegian will be directly behind him and Myers may well go with them given the bravado of the youth.
If he keeps finding he can hold on, break more age records and force his way into the Australian team for the World Championships.
Right now, Myers’ 3:35.52 is just three seconds away from making the team and becoming the best for his age in history.