Track and Field Will Wayde Van Niekerk Set Another World Record At The World Championships? By Alicia Springer Posted on July 31, 2017 5 min read 0 0 59 Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Share on Google+ Share on Reddit Share on Pinterest Share on Linkedin Share on Tumblr The IAAF World Championships are going to be held in London from August 4 to August 13. This will most likely be the swansong of sprint legend Usain Bolt. After he ends his career, most will look towards Wayde van Niekerk as the next big star of track and field. Van Niekerk has said that emulating Bolt is a big, massive responsibility. The sprinter had set a spectacular world record of 43.03 in the 400 meter sprint on the way to winning the 2016 Olympic title. The South African star is in complete awe of Bolt and has stated that even coming close to the charisma and unbelievable success of Usain will be extremely hard. The soft spoken Wayde has spoken to the multi Olympic gold medal winner quite a number of time and asked his advice on being more open and revealing a lot more of his persona. Van Niekerk’s Ready To Take Bolt’s Place? According to Van Niekerk the bar set by Bolt is very high, both in terms of performances and personality. He however added that he is gradually and certainly shedding his shyness. He also said that charisma and personality is something that naturally comes to Usain and hence it was difficult for the rest to catch up to him. But, Wayde also knows that performances is what matter the most; it is what makes you a great athlete and hence all that is needed at the end of the day is your own work and self-belief in your prowess. Last August at the Rio Olympics, Van Niekerk erased the 43.18 world record set by Michael Johnson which some believed could never be eclipsed. Now, the regular query on everyone’s mind is when and where the first under-43 seconds 400 meter race will be run. It is widely speculated that Van Niekerk may do that at the London World Championships next month. Wayde has recognized the fact that a sub-43 time is going to happen and that he can and will surely try for a 42 seconds sprint. Nobody should take this light as Van Niekerk looks like he is in the best shape of his life. Only a few weeks ago, he led the others with a record time of 43.62 at Lausanne, Switzerland. He slowed down a bit towards the end of this 400 meter sprint; else he could have been even faster. Van Niekerk also broke another record set by Johnson when he ran the rarely-run 300 meters sprint at a world record time of 30.81 in the Czech Republic last month. Also, his time of 19.84 for 200 meter sprint recorded in Jamaica a month ago is second best in the world in 2017. It is also important to note that he also ran the 100 meters at 9.94 seconds, which is better than the times set by Usain in competitive races this season. If Van Niekerk runs the 400 meter men’s race, in a new world-record time, and wins gold at the IAAF World Championships next month, then he has a chance to win $160, 000. And that is definitely a possibility!