Jairus Birech of Kenya crosses the finishing line.

With the World Championships looming large, track and field stars are seeking to go faster at the Diamond League Series.

With the World Championships looming large, track and field stars are seeking to go faster, further and higher at the Diamond League Series in a quest to achieve qualifying times for the Beijing showpiece.

Some seriously fast times have already been achieved in three of the meetings that have already been held so far (there are 14 in total).

Former Olympic 100m gold medallist Justin Gatlin set a new 100m PB in Doha and then equalled his 200m PB in Eugene at the weekend before roaring “Where are you?” to the TV camera - presumably aimed at rival Usain Bolt.

Also in Eugene, South Africa’s Anaso Jobodwana improved his national record, set earlier in the month, as he finished second to Gatlin, beating the likes of Nickel Ashmeade and Curtis Mitchell. Steeplechase king and Olympic gold medallist Ezekiel Kemboi from Kenya chased down and pipped compatriot Jairus Birech at the line in an impressive 8:01:71 in his very first race of the year.

African sprint queens, Murielle Ahoure from Ivory Coast and Nigeria’s Blessing Okagbare-Ighoteguonor, also improved their times for the year in the 100m, Ahoure finishing second to world champion Shelley-Ann Fraser-Pryce with the same time of 10.81, a world-leading time.

Even faster times and possibly new world records are expected in the next four meetings with Rome, Birmingham, Oslo and New York all taking place this month and broadcast exclusively live on SuperSport and in HD. 

Rome’s Olympic Stadium is famous for being very fast, over 20 sub-10-second 100m runs having been posted there. Gatlin has confirmed his appearance and with the form he’s in, fans can expect a really fast time.

Bolt will run at the Adidas Grand Prix, to be held at New York’s Icahn Stadium, the scene of his first 100m World Record (9.72) in May 2008.

Two of track and field’s long standing world records are under serious threat, Javier Sotomayor’s 2.45m in the men’s high jump and Sergey Bubka’s 6.15m in the men’s pole-vault. These records could be history by the end of the month as Mutaz Barshim and Bohdan Bondarenko continue their epic battle to see who’ll transcend Sotomayor’s mark first while Renaud Lavillenie, who has already broken Bubka’s indoor record, is now seriously gunning for it outdoors. 

SuperSport viewers on the Compact bouquet will also get to enjoy some of the Diamond League Series action with the Adidas Grand Prix on Saturday, 13 June to be broadcast live on SS4 HD. 

Broadcast details:

Golden Gala – Rome, Thursday, 4 June on SS6 HD, Maximo at 20:00 CAT

Birmingham Grand Prix, Sunday, 7 June on SS7 HD, Maximo at 16:00 CAT

Bislett Games – Oslo, Thursday, 11 June on SS6 HD, Maximo2 at 20:00 CAT

Adidas Grand Prix, Saturday, 13 June on SS4 HD, Maximo2 at 19:00 CAT