Marco Arop held off Olympic champion Emmanuel Korir to capture his second consecutive Diamond League 800-metre title on Thursday in Lausanne.
The 22-year-old from Edmonton, who didn’t advance out of the semi-finals in his Olympic debut earlier this month in Tokyo, ran 1 minute 44.5 seconds on a gusty night.
Arop beat what was nearly an identical field to the Olympic final. Korir, who made a push to catch Arop down the homestretch, was second in 1:44.62, while Kenyan teammate Ferguson Rotich, the silver medalist in Tokyo, was third on Thursday in 1:45.48.
Arop beat virtually the same field to win the Prefontaine Classic last Saturday in Eugene, Ore. He captured a silver at the Diamond League meet in Stockholm a couple of weeks before the Olympics.
The Canadian is relatively new to track and field, capturing his first international title at the Pan American Games in 2019 in Lima. He grew up playing basketball, and dreamt of one day playing in the NBA.
Aaron Brown of Toronto was fourth in a men’s 200 field missing Canada’s Olympic champion Andre De Grasse. American Kenny Bednarek, who finished runner-up to De Grasse in Tokyo, won in a wind-aided 19.65. Brown crossed in 20.18.
Moh Ahmed of St. Catharines, Ont., the silver medalist in the 5,000 in Tokyo, moved down to the 3,000 on Thursday, finishing ninth. Norway’s Jakob Ingebrigtsen won in 7:33.06. Ahmed crossed in 7:42.53.
Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce led a list of upsets at the blustery Diamond League meeting as she beat Olympic sprint queen Elaine Thompson-Herah in the women’s 100 metres.
Thompson-Herah was among an imposing list of Tokyo gold medalists who failed to reprise their form from the Olympics and were beaten in front a full house at La Pointaise Stadium.
The 29-year-old had run the second-fastest 100m of all time last Saturday in blistering 10.54 seconds to win at the Prefontaine Classic in Eugene, but found herself beaten by her 34-year-old fellow Jamaican in one of the night’s many surprises.
Fraser-Pryce got out of the blocks quickest to finish in a personal best of 10.6, ahead of Thompson-Herah in 10.64 with Tokyo bronze medalist Shericka Jackson completing a Jamaican clean sweep of the top three places.
The trio are due to continue their rivalry, plus their bid to break Florence Griffith Joyner’s 33-year-old world record of 10.49, at the next Diamond League meeting in Paris on Saturday.
Olympic champions Selemon Barega, Armand Duplantis, Steven Gardiner, Emmanuel Korir, Hansle Parchment and Karsten Warholm were all beaten, but Ryan Crouser extended his winning streak to 21 successive meetings as he again blew away the opposition in the shot put.
Swede Duplantis finished a disappointing fourth in the pole vault as he failed at 5.82 with Olympic silver medalist Christopher Nilsen beating American compatriot Sam Kendricks to win the event.
Norway’s 400m hurdles Olympic gold medalist Warholm ran in the flat 400m race but faded in the home straight to finish fourth as American Wilbert London dipped first over the line to pip veteran Isaac Makwala from Botswana.
Jakob Ingebrigtsen, the Olympic 1,500m champion, was part of an early breakaway in the 3,000m to edge Ethiopia’s Berihu Aregawi into second place in a season’s best 7:33.06. Barega, who won a stunning 10,000m race in Tokyo, could only finish fourth over the shorter distance.
Devon Allen, who finished just outside the medals in the 110m hurdles at the Olympics, extracted a measure of revenge to win in a wind-assisted time of 13.07 as Tokyo victor Parchment of Jamaica hit the second last hurdle and was left last in the eight-man field.
Olympic 400m champion Gardiner from the Bahamas finished third in the 200m where American Kenny Bednarek won in a wind-assisted 19.65.