The IAAF Diamond League drew to a close less than 48 hours ago as the second batch of champions were crowned in Brussels, following on from the first final in Zurich on Thursday (30).
One world record and nine IAAF Diamond League records were broken throughout the season, along with dozens of world leads, meeting records and national records.
Beyond the record-breaking performances, there were many other memorable moments, close finishes and intriguing battles, 10 of which are highlighted below.
Selemon Barega's world-leading 5000m win, Brussels
Eighteen-year-old Selemon Barega led home four other super-fast Ethiopians, including world champion Muktar Edris, to win the IAAF Diamond League 5000m title in Brussels in 12:43.02. Not only was his time a world lead, world U20 record and IAAF Diamond League record, but it moved him to fourth on the world all-time list.
Beatrice Chepkoech's steeplechase world record, Monaco
Beatrice Chepkoech, who had lost her chance of winning the world 3000m steeplechase title in London the year before after initially missing a water jump and having to double back to complete it, made the headlines for the right reasons in Monaco by setting a world record of 8:44.32, taking more than eight seconds off the previous mark.
Juan Miguel Echevarria's windy 8.83m, Stockholm
Nineteen-year-old Juan Miguel Echevarria of Cuba virtually long jumped out of the pit in Stockholm to register an effort of 8.83m that, but for a following wind of 2.1m/s – 0.1m/s over the allowable limit for record purposes – would have been the farthest legal jump since Mike Powell set the current world record of 8.95m in 1991.
Caterine Ibarguen’s horizontal jumps double, Zurich/Brussels
Colombia’s Olympic triple jump champion Caterine Ibarguen secured a narrow victory in her specialist event at the IAAF Diamond League final in Zurich before hopping on a flight to Brussels the next morning for the second IAAF Diamond League final. She won the long jump there to become the first non-sprinter to win two Diamond trophies in one year.
Conseslus Kipruto's one-shoed steeplechase win, Zurich
Kenya’s world and Olympic champion Conseslus Kipruto lost his left shoe after a minute and a half of the men’s 3000m steeplechase in Zurich but went on to retain his IAAF Diamond League title by overtaking Morocco’s world silver medallist Soufiane El Bakkali in between the final barrier and the finishing line.
Christian Coleman and Noah Lyles mark new era of US sprinting, Brussels/Monaco
World indoor champion Christian Coleman returned from mid-season injuries to qualify for the IAAF Diamond League final in Brussels and take the trophy in a world-leading 9.79. Two days after his 21st birthday, Noah Lyles of the United States won the men’s 200m in Monaco in a world-leading 19.65, moving him into the top 10 on the world all-time list with one of four sub-19.7 clockings throughout the year.
Shaunae Miller-Uibo's 400m win, Monaco
Olympic 400m champion Shaunae Miller-Uibo of The Bahamas was pushed all the way to the line by her 20-year-old rival Salwa Eid Naser of Bahrain in Monaco, winning in 48.97 – a meeting, national, and IAAF Diamond League record, and the fastest run in 2018. Naser was rewarded with an Asian record of 49.08.
Sandra Perkovic's 70-metre discus throw, Doha
World and Olympic discus champion Sandra Perkovic kick-started her 2018 IAAF Diamond League campaign with a world-leading throw of 71.38m in Doha to break her own IAAF Diamond League record.
Abderrahman Samba's sub-47 400m hurdles win, Paris
Qatar’s Aberrahman Samba became the second fastest man ever over 400m hurdles, beating a field including Norway’s world champion Karsten Warholm in 46.98 – just 0.20 off the world record set by USA’s Kevin Young when winning the 1992 Olympic title.
Tom Walsh's shot put Diamond League record, Zurich
New Zealand’s Tom Walsh once again proved to be a man for the big occasion. In one of the highest quality shot put competitions in history, the world indoor and outdoor champion sent his shot out to an IAAF Diamond League record of 22.60m in Zurich to land the Diamond trophy.
2018 IAAF Diamond League winners
100m: Christian Coleman (USA), Murielle Ahoure (CIV)
200m: Noah Lyles (USA), Shaunae Miller-Uibo (BAH)
400m: Fred Kerley (USA), Salwa Eid Naser (BRN)
800m: Emmanuel Korir (KEN), Caster Semenya (RSA)
1500m: Timothy Cheruiyot (KEN), Laura Muir (GBR)
5000m: Selemon Barega (ETH), Hellen Obiri (KEN)
3000m steeplechase: Conseslus Kipruto (KEN), Beatrice Chepkoech (KEN)
110m/100m hurdles: Sergey Shubenkov (ANA), Brianna McNeal (USA)
400m hurdles: Kyron McMaster (IVB), Dalilah Muhammad (USA)
High jump: Brandon Starc (AUS), Maria Lasitskene (ANA)
Pole vault: Timur Morgunov (ANA), Katerina Stefanidi (GRE)
Long jump: Luvo Manyonga (RSA), Caterine Ibarguen (COL)
Triple jump: Pedro Pablo Pichardo (CUB), Caterine Ibarguen (COL)
Shot put: Tom Walsh (NZL), Gong Lijiao (CHN)
Discus: Fedrick Dacres (JAM), Yaime Perez (CUB)
Javelin: Andreas Hofmann (GER), Tatsiana Khaladovich (BLR)
As well as the honour of becoming the Diamond League champion, winners of each discipline in the finals secured a US$50,000 cash prize and a spectacular Diamond Trophy.
Future of the IAAF Diamond League
At the recent IAAF Council Meeting in Buenos Aires, the IAAF received progress reports on plans to revamp the Diamond League, which the Council agreed was vital to the sport remaining relevant to the athletes and fans.
“We discussed, among other issues, the need to address the issue of large numbers of athletes at the Diamond League wearing identical kit, which causes confusion for spectators and broadcasters,” said IAAF President Sebastian Coe. “This has to change and a group has been set up to drive this change.”
Looking ahead to the 2019 World Championships and implementation of the IAAF World Rankings
As previously annouced, wild card entries* to the IAAF World Championships Doha 2019 will be up for grabs in the 2019 IAAF Diamond League. Qualification and entry criteria for the 2019 World Championships will be announced later this month to coincide with the 'Doha 2019 One year to go' milestone.
Additionally, final discussions on the IAAF World Rankings will be held next week in Ostrava during the IAAF Continental Cup Ostrava 2018. When the feedback process has concluded, the implementation of the IAAF World Rankings will be announced.
*The decision to enter athletes rests entirely with their national federation, which maintain full control of its final entries.