China’s Liu set a world record in 110-meter hurdles

Liu was a high jumper back in fifth grade when he was advised to give up sports after a bone test revealed he would remain too short to become a world-class athlete. He became China's first sprint Olympic gold medalist in Athens, and topped the mark he shared with Jackson, who ran 12.91 in Stuttgart, Germany, in August 1993.

Liu, who switched from the high jump to hurdles in 1998, has always done well on this Pontaise track.

On this track in 2002, running in the B race for lack of space in a star-studded main event that included Jackson, four-time world champion Allen Johnson, and then-Olympic champion Anier Garcia, Liu clocked 13.12, toppling Renaldo Nehemiah's junior mark that stood since 1978.

The following year, he won a bronze medal at the world championships, establishing himself as a medal contender for the 2004 Olympics in Athens, though perhaps not for the gold, the AP reports.