Learn English vocabulary to talk about the news. In a race being run by athletes in different locations, it looked like 200m sprinter Noah Lyles had broken Usain Bolt’s world record. However, it turns out that Lyles had accidentally only run 185m. Neil and Georgina look at the vocabulary in the news around this story.

Video chapters
0:00 – Introduction
1:22 – The story
2:10 – Headline 1: Noah Lyles: Sprinter ‘beats’ Usain Bolt’s 200m world record before blunder is uncovered
4:30 – Headline 2: Noah Lyles breaks 200m world record — but then it transpires he only ran 185m
6:40 – Headline 3: American Noah Lyles smashes Usain Bolt’s 200m record – before being told he had only run 185m in a mix-up over using the right STARTING LINE… with commentator Steve Cram left laughing in disbelief!
8:57 – Language summary

The story

A pretty spectacular mistake last night left athletics commentator Steve Cram almost lost for words. ‘Here’s Lyles he’s about to finish. That cannot be right! That cannot be right’. ‘I was about to say the exact same thing’. Yeah, this is the kind of stuff you can’t make up. US sprinter Noah Lyles was racing against two other athletes over 200m all in different locations using a special timing system and he is very fast, but he’s not that fast. He crossed the line in a time that would have smashed Usain Bolt’s world record only to find out… ‘He started at the wrong start line – ran 185 metres – make of that what you will’. So he was 15 metres short. It means he technically didn’t complete the race. He was moved into third place, so he didn’t bag the £8,000 prize either. Not his best day out.

Key words and phrases

careless or serious mistake

  • Tactical blunders cost him the election.
  • He blunders around knocking things over – he’s very clumsy.

becomes apparent

  • The electricity didn’t work but then it transpired we hadn’t paid the bill.
  • It transpired after the court case that he’d committed the same crime before.

mistake that creates confusion

  • It was a very embarrassing mix-up for the politician.
  • The ticket mix-up meant they missed half the game.

To download the audio and test your understanding, go to our website: https://www.bbc.co.uk/learningenglish/english/course/newsreview/unit-14/session-151

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