Nick Willis in form for Diamond League race

Last updated 17:04 21/08/2012

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Nick Willis has come close to beating the New Zealand 1000m record in his build-up race for the Lausanne Diamond League meeting.

Willis set a personal best in Linz, Austria with a time of 2 minutes 16.58 seconds - just 1/100 second outside the New Zealand record of 2:16.57 held by Sir John Walker - set in Oslo, Norway in 1980.

The time is faster than Peter Snell's best of 2 minutes 16.6 seconds recorded at Auckland in 1964 - a hand-timed result which is listed alongside Walker's record.

The Linz race was won by Kenyan Benson Seurei in 2:16.39 from Canadian Nate Brannan in 2:16.52.

Brannan's time is a Canadian national record.

Willis was disappointed to miss the record by the barest of margins.

 "It was good to be back racing, and I'm happy to have a fast hit-out before the Lausanne Diamond League 1500m in three days," he said.

Willis currently sits in sixth-equal place on the Diamond League points tally.

The series is currently topped by Asbel Kiprop from Kenya, with compatriot Silas Kiplagat next placed.

Valerie Adams will also compete in the Lausanne meeting, where she should extend her series lead in the shot put.

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- © Fairfax NZ News

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