Allyson Felix breaks Usain Bolt’s World Championship record

Felix running in the London 2012 relay

Allyson Felix has become the most decorated track and field athlete after winning her 12th gold medal at the Doha World Athletics Championships.

Her historic moment came in the first ever 4×400 mixed relay and alongside this saw the USA break a new world record, running 3:09.34 seconds.

The record breaking quartet were Will London, Allyson Felix, Courtney Okolo and Michael Cherry.

Prior to the race, BBC commentator Andrew Cotter questioned whether a world record should be counted in such a new event:

“They have a new world record here and I’m wondering here is there a bonus for world records, there usually is, so will there be another bonus if they break it again.

“They’re just going world record, world record.”

Steve Backley, who was alongside Cotter in commentary was also sceptical about how official a world record would be:

“I’m sure that it’s not yet a proper world record to be ratified, so they’re world bests at the moment.

“I think we need to recognise what the fastest times are so far, but I don’t know how long it will take before it becomes a proper world record like all the others are.”

Five of the eight teams beat the world record from the previous evening with the United States taking three seconds off their own record.

4×400 mixed relay finishing times

Felix’s 50.4 leg was critical in Americas world record run, and what makes it even more impressive is that she gave birth only ten months earlier.

Poland went for an unorthodox style in the final, having the two men run the first legs, in the hope to have a big enough lead for the women to hang on to.

It took until the final 150 metres of the final lap for Cherry to catch Polish athlete Justyna Święty-Ersetic. Once he passed, Jamaica, Bahrain and Great Britain eventually passed the Polish team.

With it being a new event we may see other teams change around the athletes and their race position to find the right configuration before the Olympic Games in 2020.