© Copyright 2019 – Athletics Illustrated

It was only a matter of time before Toronto’s Gabriela DeBues-Stafford would become the first Canadian to clear the hurdle of four minutes in running the 1500-metre distance. This became abundantly clear after her record-setting run earlier this summer, where she took down Lynn Kanuka’s long-standing record of 4:00.27, with a 4:00.26. DeBues-Stafford set the mark on July 20 during the London Diamond League meet, improving on Kanuka’s performance from Belgium 1985.

Thursday, in Zurich, Switzerland during the Diamond League meet, she cleared 4:00 with a 3:59.59 result and along the way, she also defeated the legendary Ethiopian Genzebe Dibaba – the current world record holder.

It is at least the sixth time that DeBues-Stafford has bettered a national record.

This is the second time taking the 1500m record this year. She also bettered the mile (1609m) record with her 4:17.87 performance in Monaco in July. In May she took down the 5,000m record with her 14:51.59 in Stockholm, to display some range.

DeBues-Stafford also bettered the national indoor mile time in January in Boston with a 4:24.80. Indoors often result in slower times than outdoors, due to typically running on a smaller track, a 200m versus 400m and sometimes slower surfaces.

Two weeks prior she demonstrated a foreshadowing of what is to come with a 14:57.45 indoors performance in Glasgow Scotland, indoors, also a national record.

So far, this is a career-defining season for the 23-year-old. However, she may provide Canadian track fans with so much more as starting Sept. 28, the 2019 IAAF Doha World Track and Field Championships begin.