American Christian Taylor produced the second-longest triple jump in history, soaring 18.21 metres to take gold in a high-quality World Athletics Championships competition on Thursday.
In a week of outstanding head-to-heads in the Bird's Nest Stadium, the men's triple jump final always promised to be among the best and it did not disappoint.
Taylor and Cuba's Pedro Pichardo came to Beijing having between them produced the 10 best marks of 2015, with the Cuban leading the way with 18.08m.
- Also read: Bolt completes 100-200m double
Taylor delivered the coup de grace with his sixth and final jump, landing just short of the 18.29m World record that has stood to Britain's Jonathan Edwards since the 1995 World Championships.
Jumping last, Pichardo too had his best jump in the sixth round but his silver medal-winning 17.73m seemed modest compared to what the packed stadium had just witnessed.
The bronze medal was also won by a last-round jump as Nelson Evora of Portugal, the Olympic gold medallist in the Bird's Nest Stadium seven years ago, cleared 17.52m to snatch third place from Omar Craddock, the American who had moved into medal positions with a 17.37m effort in the penultimate round.
Taylor, 25, from North Carolina, who had previously won the world title in 2011, said: "It was a great fight."
"When you're that close to a record, it just makes you even hungrier for the next time you compete. "This is all just gearing up to Rio."
Felix wins women's 400 metres gold
Allyson Felix of the United States won her ninth World Championships gold medal and first at 400 metres with a dominating performance.
The Olympic 200-metre champion set off by far the quickest of the eight women finalists to hold a commanding lead by 150 metres.
Off the final bend she was four metres clear of her nearest rival, Shaunae Miller of the Bahamas, who could not close the gap down the final straight.
Felix's 49.26 seconds winning time was the fastest in the world this year while Miller claimed silver in 49.67s.
The bronze medal was won by Shericka Jackson, who led home Jamaican team mates in fourth (Christine Day), fifth (Stephenie McPherson) and sixth (Novlene Williams-Mills).
Britain's Christine Ohuruogu, the champion in 2007 and 2013 and Olympic gold medallist on this track seven years ago, faded on the home straight and finished eighth in 50.63.
The gold medal won by 29-year-old Felix is only the third won by the U.S. team after six days at the Beijing World Championships.
Dominant Wlodarczyk goes 80-plus to take hammer gold
Poland's Anita Wlodarczyk summoned up the second longest hammer throw of all-time to dominate the World Championships final in the same way she has her event all season and win the title for a second time on Thursday.
The 30-year-old is the only woman to throw the hammer beyond the 80 metre mark and she did it twice at the Bird's Nest Stadium on Thursday, winning gold with her fourth effort of 80.85 metres.
The only throw better in the history of the event was the 81.08 Wlodarczyk, who also won the world title in 2009, notched to improve her own World record at the start of this month.
China's Zhang Wenxiu delighted the local crowd by claiming silver with her best throw of the season (76.33m), while 21-year-old Frenchwoman Alexandra Tavernier took bronze with her best effort of 74.02 -- nearly seven metres behind the champion.
Schippers eases into 200m final, Asher-Smith breezes
In-form Dutch sprinter Dafne Schippers eased into the final of the 200 metres, further bolstering her position as favourite to take a first World title in the event on Friday.
The 23-year-old former heptathlete, who won silver in the 100 metres behind Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce on Monday, was well clear of her rivals after the bend and eased up to win her semi-final in 22.36.
British teenager Dina Asher-Smith, however, produced the fastest time of the round in the third semi-final, powering across the line in 22.12 seconds to improve her personal best for the second time in two days.
The 200 metres is wide open this year in the absence of reigning champion Fraser-Pryce, who decided against doubling up, and Olympic champion Allyson Felix, who preferred the challenge of the 400m when the schedule prevented her her from running both.
Elaine Thompson of Jamaica ran close to her personal best to win the opening semi-final in 22.13 seconds ahead of Candyce McGrone of the United States (22.26).
Another American, Jeneba Tarmoh, finished second behind Asher-Smith in 23.38 to qualify for the final along with Jamaica's Sherone Simpson, who was runner-up to Schippers in 22.53.
Ivat Lalova-Collio of Bulgaria ran a personal best of 22.32 to qualify as one of the two fastest finishers outside the top two in each race along with Veronica Campbell-Brown.
Twice Olympic champion Campbell-Brown, who ran much of her qualifying heat on Wednesday in the wrong lane, stuck firmly to lane four as she posted her best time of the season in 22.47.