The newly laid track at Stade Charlety ©Michelle Sammet

The new, blue track at Stade Charlety, which is hosting next year's European Athletics Championships, will be christened tomorrow by the world's best at the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) Diamond League meeting in Paris.

Norway's world and European 400m hurdles champion Karsten Warholm was one of the first to test the new surface. 

"It was really good, really bouncy, it was hard, it was fast," she said.

"I think a lot of people should look forward to tomorrow when it comes to a lot of events."

One athlete relishing the action will be Conseslus Kipruto, Kenya's Olympic, world and Commonwealth 3000 metre steeplechase champion.

He returns to competition after recovering from a foot fracture diagnosed in May, and will now face the Moroccan he beat to the Diamond League title in Zurich last year, Soufiane El Bakkali.

The Moroccan leads this year's rankings with 8min 04.82sec, but doubtless carries painful memories of last year's Diamond League final in Zurich, where Kipruto overtook him in the closing stages to claim the title, despite having lost a shoe early in the race.

It would surely be too much to expect another win against the odds from the 24-year-old Kenyan, but if he can get into the top three in what is the last qualifying opportunity for the Diamond League finals, he may yet find himself in Brussels on September 6.

Paris is good karma for Turkey's Ramil Guliyev, who won the 200m in Stade Charlety in 2017, the last time it was a Diamond League race here, and went on to secure the world title in London.

But Guliyev didn’t have to race against Noah Lyles on that occasion.

The exuberant 22-year-old from Gainesville, Florida, leads this year's rankings with the 19.50sec he recorded at the Lausanne Diamond League, which put him fourth on the all-time list. 

He will be ready to inflict another defeat on the world champion, similar to the one he managed at last year's Diamond League final.

France's decathlon world record holder Kevin Mayer will be in World Championships mode ©Getty Images
France's decathlon world record holder Kevin Mayer will be in World Championships mode ©Getty Images

Also on the programme will be a triathlon for decathletes, to enable France's world record holder Kevin Mayer to hone his form ahead of the IAAF World Championships in Doha next month.

Mayer aims to speak to Diamond League organisers about incorporating similar triathlons at future meetings and offering multi-event athletes the same level of prize money as specialists.

"This is a very important goal," he said, citing the long jump at last Sunday's Diamond League meeting in Birmingham.

World and Olympic heptathlon champion Nafissatou Thiam won in a Belgian record of 6.86m, while Britain's world silver medallist Katarina Johnson-Thompson was joint second, a centimetre behind, delivering hugely entertaining action.

 "If this works we want to be treated as normal athletes, like Diamond League athletes who have fees and appearance money."

France's European 110m hurdles champion, Pascal Martinot-Lagarde, will seek to deliver a home win, but will have serious opposition from his friend and rival Sergey Shubenkov, the 2015 world champion whom he narrowly beat to gold in Berlin last summer.

Two other intriguing elements are the pair who came first and second in the US trials, Daniel Roberts and Grant Holloway, respectively.

It will be only the second professional race for each of these athletes, who have vied with each other in college competition for several years.

Roberts has run 13.00 this season, and Holloway 12.98.

There will also be a focus on the women’s 100m, with Rio 2016 Olympic 100m and 200m champion, Jamaican Elaine Thompson, joint fastest over the shorter distance this year having run 10.73 in Kingston on June 21. 

She faces double world 200m champion Dafne Schippers of The Netherlands and Marie-Josee Ta Lou, the world 100 and 200m silver medallist.