As the Paris Diamond League dominated the track and field headlines over the weekend, a smaller meet on the outskirts of the French capital showcased the impressive performance of Quebec’s Charles Philibert-Thiboutot. The nine-year pro runner achieved the fastest 1,500m time of his career, clocking 3:33.54, comfortably under the 2023 world championship standard of 3:34.20.
Nouveau record personnel et record du Québec pour @Chuck_PT sur 1500m en France lors de l’événement Fast 5000m où il termina 2e en 3:33.54.
Standard pour les Mondiaux 2023 et maintenant 3e meilleur canadien de l’histoire sur 1500m.
Sa marque personnelle datait de 2015 à Monaco. pic.twitter.com/lw7YCV0OXO
— Felix A Lapointe (@CoachLapointe) June 10, 2023
Competing at On Track Nights in Montesson, France, Philibert-Thiboutot secured second place in the men’s 1,500m event, setting a new personal best and surpassing his previous Quebec provincial record of 3:34.23, Sep in 2015. This outstanding performance guarantees him an automatic qualifying spot on Team Canada for the upcoming 2023 World Athletics Championships in Budapest in August.
The 32-year-old middle-distance runner shared on Instagram that he had been persuaded to participate in the race just five days earlier by his friend, French miler Jimmy Gressier. Gressier ran a personal best time of 3:33.90, finishing third in the race, while victory went to Narve Gilje Nordas of Norway, who set a personal best of 3:32.39.
Philibert-Thiboutot expressed his excitement on social media, celebrating his new personal best and achieving the world championship standard. “Eight years in the making, it was about damn time,” he wrote.
With his remarkable performance, Philibert-Thiboutot now ranks as the third-fastest Canadian 1,500m runner in history, trailing only Canadian record holder Kevin Sullivan (3:31.71) and Toronto’s Justyn Knight (3:33.41).
Philibert-Thiboutot will race again in France next Sunday before returning to his home province of Quebec to compete at the Classique d’athlétisme de Montréal on June 29.