“If you can dream it, you can achieve it,” Zharnel Hughes wrote on Instagram, after running 9.83 seconds to break Linford Christie’s 30-year British 100m record.
Not only did the 27-year-old dream it but, prior to his race in New York, Hughes had written down that he would make history by clocking that exact time.
The reigning European 200m champion took 0.04 secs off the previous record of 9.87 on Saturday, a mark which Christie had set at the World Championships in 1993.
Hughes’ new record is the fastest time in the world this year, and the second fastest ever by a European athlete.
Only Italy’s Marcell Jacobs, who ran 9.80 to win Olympic gold in Tokyo in 2021, has run faster.
He initially looked to be in disbelief after seeing his time – despite doing just as he had predicted.
“I woke up with a dream this morning,” Hughes said. “This morning I woke up with 9.83 on my mind.
“When I looked at the clock and saw 9.83, I don’t know if you saw my reaction, but I was like: ‘What just happened there?’ It actually came through.
“Manifestation is real.”
He later shared a photo of his prediction, which read: “Competition day in New York. I’m going to run 9.83. Have faith.”
‘I’ve not even started speed work yet’ – Hughes hints at more to come
Christie remains the only British man to have ever won World Championship 100m gold, with that victory in Stuttgart arriving a year after Olympic gold at Barcelona 1992.
Hughes said he was looking forward to seeing Christie “shaking his hand and telling him that this is long overdue”.
“I always give respect to Linford. He always supports me every time I’m in the UK, and sometimes he helps out with my training sessions,” Hughes said.
It is 20 years since a British man made the world 100m podium, since Darren Campbell won bronze in Paris in 2003.
|9.83||Zharnel Hughes||24 June 2023||New York (United States)|
|9.87||Linford Christie||15 August 1993||Stuttgart (Germany)|
|9.91||James Dasaolu||13 July 2013||Birmingham (England)|
|9.93||Reece Prescod||31 May 2022||Ostrava (Czech Republic)|
|9.93||Eugene Amo-Dadzie||16 June 2023||Graz (Austria)|
|9.96||CJ Ujah||8 June 2014||Hengelo (Netherlands)|
|9.96||Joel Fearon||30 July 2016||Bedford (England)|
|9.97||Dwain Chambers||22 August 1999||Seville (Spain)|
|9.97||Adam Gemili||7 June 2015||Birmingham (England)|
|9.98||Jason Gardener||2 July 1999||Lausanne (Switzerland)|
|9.99||Nethaneel Mitchell-Blake||13 May 2017||Columbia (United States)|
Hughes will take great confidence from his performance with less than two months until the World Championships in Budapest.
The Briton powered away from the field in impressive fashion over the final 50m, beating Jamaica’s Ackeem Blake (9.93) to clinch victory at the New York Grand Prix
Saturday’s race also featured American 2019 world 100m champion Christian Coleman, who finished third in 10.02.
After Hughes, the next fastest times in the world so far this year have been recorded by Kenya’s Ferdinand Omanyala (9.84secs) and the United States’ reigning world champion Fred Kerley (9.88secs).
Hughes, whose personal best had been 9.91 since 2018, is coached by Glen Mills – the man who helped retired Jamaican sprinting legend Usain Bolt win his eight Olympic medals.
Mills is the head coach of the Racers Track Club in Kingston, Jamaica, which was also the home of 2011 world 100m champion Yohan Blake – the second fastest man in history behind Bolt.
“Anything is possible,” said Hughes.
“The great thing is, we haven’t started speed work yet, so this is just raw speed and endurance. My coach is going to be elated.”
Before thinking about the worlds, the UK Championships – which double as the trials for a place in the worlds team – will take place in Manchester on 8-9 July.