Said Aouita of Morocco set his second world record in a month today, running the 1,500 meters in 3 minutes 29.45 seconds at the Grand Prix meet here to break a five-week-old record set by Britain's Steve Cram.
Aouita, the Olympic 5,000-meter champion, cut 22 hundredths of a second off the mark set by Cram in Nice, France, July 16. Aouita set the 5,000-meter world record in Oslo, July 27, running 13:00.40.
"If I was not injured tonight, I would have run 3:27.5," said Aouita, who said he has a hamstring problem. "I think I could maybe break five world records this summer. But the doctor said I must give the injury 10 days to heal, so we shall have to see."
Aouita's performance overshadowed sprinter Carl Lewis' second loss in three days, this time in the 200 meters.
Wearing a red and blue bodysuit, Lewis was beaten badly. He challenged coming out of the turn, with Calvin Smith, holder of the 100-meter world record, outside him and Olympic silver medalist Kirk Baptiste inside. But with 40 meters to go, Lewis faded to fourth, finishing in 20.69. Baptiste was first in 20.45, Smith was second in the same time and the fourth American in the race, James Butler, was third in 20.63.
Before today's meet, the 13th stop on the International Amateur Athletic Federation's Mobil Grand Prix tour, Aouita had announced his intention to go after the 1,500 record. West Germany's Volker Blumenthal was the pacesetter for the first two laps, clocking 56.80 for 400 meters and 1:53.50 for 800.
Blumenthal then pulled off the track and Frank O'Mara of Ireland became the pacesetter. O'Mara also did his job well. He led the field past the 1,200-meter mark in 2:48.50.
Aouita then took over. With the crowd and athletes cheering him on, he crossed the finish line and began celebrating.
American Sydney Maree was second in 3:32.90 and Pierre Deleze of Switzerland was third in 3:33.04.
Aouita nearly broke the mile record Wednesday night in Zurich. He won in 3:46.92, the second-fastest mile time ever and just outside Cram's record of 3:46.31.
Lewis recently began competing again after taking two months off following an injury.
"I'm pleased with the performance," he said. "I finished fourth but I ran better than in Zurich. It was my first real 200 meters since last year. I tried to press but I got tired. I'll be running in Cologne. I'm getting over a tough injury layoff."
Willie Banks of the United States won the triple jump but fell short of his world record. Banks' winning jump was 55-6 1/4, compared with his record of 58-11 1/2.
Another U.S. victory came in the 400-meter intermediate hurdles, with Danny Harris winning in 48.34. The women's 400 hurdles also was won by an American, Judi Brown-King, in 54.73.